• Cataract/Anterior Segment, Comprehensive Ophthalmology, Glaucoma

    A weekly roundup of ophthalmic news from around the web.

    Older adults have fewer falls after cataract surgery. The prospective Australian cohort study Falls in Older people with Cataract (FOCUS) enrolled 409 participants aged ≥65 years who had been referred for cataract surgery between 2013 and 2016. The authors evaluated the rates of self-reported falls before and after surgery. The sex- and age-adjusted incidence rate of falls was 1.17 per year prior to cataract surgery, 0.81 per year after first surgery, and 0.41 per year after second surgery (in those who needed a second surgery). Mean refractive error improved after surgery, as well. The authors conclude that “timely and equitable access to cataract surgery is needed to prevent injuries and to promote healthy aging.” The Medical Journal of Australia

    Having metabolic syndrome increases your risk of ocular hypertension, but not glaucoma. The long-term Rochester Epidemiology Project cohort study has been studying health-related data from ~131,000 adults aged ≥40 years residing in Olmsted County, Minnesota, between 2005 and 2018. Investigators reviewed records from 30,204 participants with metabolic syndrome (MetS) and 8082 controls to assess the relationship between MetS, ocular hypertension, and glaucomatous optic neuropathy (GON). Eighty-five percent of the participants with GON and 87% of those with ocular hypertension had MetS. While participants with MetS were more likely to have ocular hypertension than participants without MetS (odds ratio [OR] 1.66), they were not more likely to have GON (OR 1.04). People with both MetS and GON had higher IOP than people with GON alone, but this did not lead to more severe disease. Journal of Glaucoma

    Telehealth visits can improve eye exam rates in patients with diabetes. A US-based eye clinic implemented a telehealth program to monitor 8417 patients with diabetes who had visited the clinic in person during 2019 and had not yet completed in-person eye examinations before the COVID-19 lockdown in March 2020. Patients who had completed a telehealth eye appointment with an ophthalmologist in the 90-day period following lockdown were significantly more likely to return for an in-person examination than patients who had not (50.2% vs 40.3%, respectively), and this higher rate of return was seen in all racial/ethnic groups. Non-White patients who did not complete a telehealth visit had greater declines in in-person examinations than White patients who did not complete a visit. Therefore, telehealth visits may help close some of the healthcare disparity gaps for patients who are vulnerable to diabetes-related ocular conditions. Clinical Ophthalmology