New Web site educates public about glaucoma

October 19, 2011

The Glaucoma Working Group has launched a new Web site to educate Americans aged 40 years or older about the risks for the disease as well as the importance of comprehensive eye examinations and proper disease management.

New York City-The Glaucoma Working Group has launched a new Web site to educate Americans aged 40 years and older about the risks for the disease as well as the importance of comprehensive eye examinations and proper disease management.

The site, www.takeonglaucoma.com, includes insights, interactive quizzes, and downloadable resources. Glaucoma Working Group members include the Glaucoma Foundation, the Alliance for Aging Research, and ophthalmologists, with funding from Merck.

According to the group, three major factors prevent optimal diagnosis and treatment of the disease:

  • Many older Americans do not consider glaucoma a personal health issue, although their age alone puts them at risk.
  • Many Americans do not visit an eye care professional often enough, and they may not always receive a dilated exam when they do.
  • Eye doctors may not directly address adherence issues, which can be complex.

“There is a silent nature to glaucoma, which often makes it difficult for people to take the condition seriously until irreversible damage is done,” said Scott Christensen, president and chief executive officer (CEO) of the Glaucoma Foundation. “Our goal with this program is to make people aware of their risks, to encourage them to ask the right questions of their doctors, and to stress the importance of properly managing their disease if [glaucoma is] diagnosed.”

Daniel Perry, president and CEO of the Alliance for Aging Research, said, “Our nation is aging rapidly, and glaucoma is one of the conditions often overlooked as we grow older. Aging Americans need to think ahead, understand the risks of glaucoma, and stay informed to help protect their eye health.”

James C. Tsai, MD, chairman of the department of ophthalmology and visual science at Yale University, New Haven, CT, and Glaucoma Working Group panelist, said, “As a practicing ophthalmologist, I see firsthand from my patients just how important and challenging it can be to make glaucoma a priority. There are many things in life that we must juggle, but taking the time to monitor your eye health and manage glaucoma should not be ignored.”

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