Ocular hypertension occurs when intraocular pressure (IOP) is greater than the normal range with no evidence of vision loss or damage to the optic nerve. Individuals with ocular hypertension have an increased risk for glaucoma. The mean normal IOP is 15 mmHg and the mean IOP of untreated glaucoma is 18 mmHg. Elevated IOP commonly occurs in patients over the age of 50 and is often due to enlargement of the lens, narrowing of the angle, iridolenticular apposition, and pigment liberation that obstructs the trabecular meshwork. Cataract surgery and lensectomy can lower IOP and reduce the risk of glaucoma. The global wealth inequality of Blacks has created health inequities that have led to decreased access to surgical care contributing to higher rates of blindness from glaucoma. Greater education on the benefits of early cataract surgery and trabecular bypass for higher risk patients, as well as addressing wealth and health inequities, can help to bend the curve of blindness from glaucoma.
Part of the book: Ocular Hypertension