• Why do my doctors take three intraocular pressure readings when I go for exams?


    Question:

    Is it necessary to have three pressure readings taken when I go for my bi-annual exams? I'm an American, live in Chile, and they always take a reading at 8 am, noon and then at 3 pm. When I lived in the U.S., my doctors only took one reading.


    Answer:

    Intraocular pressure generally changes throughout the day with the highest reading early in the morning and the lowest in the mid-afternoon. Due to this fact, your eye doctor in Chile feels more comfortable taking three pressure readings per day. This might be the standard of care in Chile, although most in the U.S, will take one reading as a reasonable sample and only ask for more if the medication and pressure seem to be working less well. It is generally standard of care in the U.S for glaucoma patients to be seen every 3 months.


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