Low-voltage glaucoma linked to cognitive impairment
A brand new research revealed within the British Journal of Ophthalmology has linked a kind of glaucoma to cognitive impairment, a situation that normally precedes dementia. Whereas the research can’t set up causation, it provides to a physique of analysis suggesting that there are hyperlinks between glaucoma and neurodegenerative ailments.
Glaucoma is a state by which the optic nerve, which transmits all visible info from the retina to the mind, is broken. That is normally attributable to elevated strain within the eye. A rarer kind of glaucoma, referred to as regular pressure glaucoma, entails injury to the optic nerve with none change in regular eye strain ranges. Untreated glaucoma can result in visible impairment and even blindness.
Glaucoma and dementia
A earlier see once more had reported an affiliation between a kind of glaucoma referred to as main open-angle glaucoma (POAG) and Alzheimer’s illness. Nonetheless, the evaluate additionally famous that some research discovered no correlation or, in some instances, a detrimental correlation between POAG and Alzheimer’s illness. The brand new paper, written by Australian scientists at Flinders College and QIMR Berghofer Medical Analysis Institute, explored whether or not this conflicting proof might be attributable to the truth that in some instances POAG entails larger eye strain, whereas in others, regular pressure glaucoma is noticed.
To take a more in-depth take a look at these glaucoma subtypes, the researchers checked out 144 sufferers aged 65 and over from Australian and New Zealand Superior Glaucoma Registry, all of which have been recognized with the traditional pressure type of the illness. These people had been matched by age and intercourse with 146 sufferers with high-voltage glaucoma.
All sufferers in each teams underwent a well being questionnaire and cognitive evaluation, which was tailored from a device used to evaluate cognition in blind individuals, to keep away from confusion associated to sufferers’ poor imaginative and prescient.
The outcomes had been clear. After bearing in mind a battery of different danger components for dementia, resembling smoking, stroke, and hypertension, there was a marked enhance in cognitive impairment in sufferers with regular pressure glaucoma. Principal writer of the research Dr Sean Mullany, an ophthalmologist at Flinders College, summed up the findings: “Cognitive impairment was greater than twice as widespread in sufferers with regular pressure glaucoma than in these with excessive pressure glaucoma. Our discovery of an affiliation between the sort of glaucoma and cognitive impairment helps a rising physique of proof suggesting an affiliation between glaucoma and dementia.
Though the research was unable to determine whether or not the cognitive impairment was attributable to a selected kind of dementia and didn’t have usually sighted controls, it nonetheless highlights a situation that warrants an additional investigation. Mullany concluded: “This affiliation between regular pressure glaucoma and dementia has the potential to alter our understanding of glaucoma and offers perception into future instructions of remedy, however extra analysis is required to delve into this regular pressure glaucoma-dementia relationship extra definitively. .
Reference: Mullany S, Xiao L, Qassim A, et al. Regular pressure glaucoma is related to cognitive impairment. Br J Ophthalmol. 2021. do I: 10.1136 / bjophtalmol-2020-317461