Medical therapy for glaucoma is not becoming obsolete, but it is evolving away from conventional topical administration.
Considering the pace of innovation, Malik Y. Kahook, MD, suggested that drops will not be the primary method of treating glaucoma in 10 years. Dr. Kahook, professor of ophthalmology, The Slater Family Endowed Chair in Ophthalmology, University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus, Aurora, CO, outlined drug delivery platforms at the Glaucoma Symposium during the 2017 Glaucoma 360 meeting.
“Medical therapy has real shortcomings, with adherence being its major limitation,” said Dr. Kahook. “The emergence of new surgical options has generated a debate over whether surgery for glaucoma management should be done sooner.
“Although it is being said more and more that medical therapy for glaucoma is becoming obsolete, I believe that its demise is greatly exaggerated,” he added.
Strategies introduced to address poor adherence with prescribed topical therapies have included various dosing and other aids to enable accurate instillation or overcoming forgetfulness. Individually, they have not factored in all of the issues that limit adherence.
“There is an unmet need for some ‘GAP’ (Guided Administration of Pharmaceuticals) therapy that would fit in a zone between topical medical therapy and laser or surgery–and provide 100% adherence along with satisfaction among both physicians and patients,” Dr. Kahook said.