Glaucoma is a common chronic eye condition and the second commonest cause of blindness in the UK. It is typically influenced by the pressure in the eye (intraocular pressure) being too high, for a particular person. Treatments reduce eye pressure to delay or stop glaucoma getting worse. However, in some glaucoma may still progress, so patients need regular monitoring at hospital eye services where they have their eye pressure and the visual field measured. This allows doctors to assess effectiveness of current treatment and detect glaucoma progression. Patients need these check-ups for the rest of their lives. 

Hospital eye services are very busy, accounting for 10% of all NHS outpatient visits. Glaucoma patients represent a significant part of this workload, in England alone over 1 million visits per year are for glaucoma patients.  Resource constraints resulting in delays in patients’ access to glaucoma services have resulted in vision loss due to glaucoma [1]. Glaucoma services are overwhelmed and struggling to accommodate current demands [8]. Reducing the need for hospital-based services will improve the ability to see those most at risk of vision loss, which could alleviate both demand on the service and improve patient outcomes. Digital technologies that provide opportunities for home monitoring of glaucoma progression have potential to contribute to solve these challenges and, potentially, improve outcomes. However, understanding which patients could benefit most, the acceptability of the technologies, and the implications for the service need to be resolved before a definitive evaluative study can be conducted. This feasibility study will address these uncertainties. 

The overall aim of this study is to determine the feasibility and acceptability of digital technologies to monitor glaucoma at home and inform the possible need and design of a definitive evaluative study.

Funder: National Institute for Health Research Health Technology Assessment Programme

CI : Dr Katie Gillies



Ongoing - Reporting