By Derek Bridges [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons
VectorVision CEO Dr. David Evans recently travelled to New Orleans to attend the 14th annual meeting of the Optometric Glaucoma Society for which he is a founding member. The presentations focused on new developments in imaging of the optic nerve and ganglion cells, new data about visual field progression and the clinical applications of the research findings. Dr. Evans had particular interest in the visual field data from primates in which glaucoma was surgically induced. The test results showed that the perimetric spot size most commonly used in the clinic for visual field examination (spot size 3) is too large to detect the early changes in vision loss. The primate data showed that spot size 1 is the most sensitive, but the presenters acknowledged that most patients do not like perimetry and will not tolerate the perimtery tests if the smaller spot is used.
Dr. Harry Quigley from Johns Hopkins gave several presentations at the meeting. He confirmed that if glaucoma patients experience vision recovery, then standard perimetry using current clinical techniques is most likely too insensitive to detect it. This data supports the idea that other tests are needed to monitor early vision loss and vision recovery potential in glaucoma patients. The data also explains why the vision recovery noted in glaucoma patients with contrast sensitivity has not been corroborated with visual field testing.