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  • Cataract/Anterior Segment, Comprehensive Ophthalmology, Cornea/External Disease, Glaucoma

    A weekly roundup of ophthalmic news from around the web.

    Clinicians report burnout related to performing cataract surgery. A cross-sectional survey of 406 members of the Royal College of Ophthalmologists, administered between December 2019 and February 2020, found that even in this period prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, clinicians reported stress-related burnout related to performing cataract surgery. The overall reported rate of high-level burnout was 3.5%, but 40% of respondents reported high-level burnout within the survey section dealing with personal accomplishments. Furthermore, 17% of respondents said that they would be willing to give up surgical responsibilities if their pay remained the same. The authors conclude that “More must be done to further evaluate the impact of burnout on the specialty across clinical and surgical responsibilities with the inevitable increased burden on services.” European Journal of Ophthalmology

    Glaucoma is a risk factor for cardiovascular disease, but healthy lifestyle choices could offset that risk. Investigators studied data from more than 466,000 participants in the UK Biobank Study to assess the prevalence of incident cardiovascular disease (CVD) in patients with glaucoma and to see whether lifestyle modification has an effect on CVD risk. After adjusting for family history and other factors, participants with glaucoma (n = 8109) had a 1.2 times greater risk of incident CVD than the participants without glaucoma. Women and younger people were more likely to have CVD. However, glaucomatous patients with healthy lifestyle habits such as not smoking, high levels of physical activity, and good diet had reduced risk new-onset CVD than those with poorer lifestyle habits. Scientific Reports

    Do extracellular vesicles play a role in keratoconus pathogenesis? Possibly, according to researcher Dr. Dimitrios Karamichos, executive director of the Eye Institute at the University of North Texas. He and his team have published findings from a study that evaluated tear samples from patients with keratoconus and healthy volunteers, and found that tetraspanin extracellular vesicle (EV) counts were 1.31-fold higher in the keratoconus samples than in the normal samples. Dr. Karamichos noted, “If we can understand the role of EVs in keratoconus, we will unlock a slew of potential drug development and therapeutic options that can have a profound impact on the lives of patients who suffer from this condition.” The University of North Texas Health Science Center at Fort Worth; Experimental Eye Research

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    Don’t miss last week’s roundup: Working with dry eye disease, fat intake and AMD risk, blood pressure and glaucoma