Glaucoma is a leading cause of irreversible blindness worldwide. There are five major glaucomas: primary open angle (to which persons of African descent are more susceptible); angle-closure (leading cause of blindness in China); normal-tension (comprises 30-40% of primary open-angle glaucoma in US and 80-90% in Korea and Japan); exfoliation syndrome (most common identifiable cause of open-angle glaucoma worldwide) and pigmentary glaucoma (affecting persons between ages 20-40, including 400,000 in the US).
New York Eye and Ear Infirmary of Mount Sinai (NYEE) is a foremost referral center for medical and surgical treatment of all forms of glaucoma. It is also a center for clinical drug trials, laser and surgical trials, and genetics studies with an emphasis on translational research to speed the progress of lab data to the clinical practice for immediate and useful results.
NYEE glaucoma staff are technological and clinical leaders. They are known for having performed the majority of the early research on ultrasound biomicroscopy (UBM), which led to a better understanding of angle closure glaucoma and other diseases of the anterior segment of the eye. They have developed new laser and incisional surgical techniques that make eye surgery easier and safer. This includes the titanium-sapphire laser for treating patients with uncontrolled open-angle glaucoma.
NYEE glaucoma scientists and clinicians conduct clinical trials of drugs for lowering intraocular pressure, increasing fluid outflow, and strengthening the eye against the effects of high pressure. They study new glaucoma drainage implants and surgical procedures and materials. In collaboration with colleagues from other institutions they perform research on exfoliation syndrome, the most common identifiable cause of open-angle glaucoma worldwide. Other research includes retinal imaging studies to understand the role of blood flow in glaucoma and new modalities of treatment to help prevent vision loss. NYEE doctors are also looking at genes involved in different forms of glaucoma and researching modifier genes that contribute to whether or not someone with a glaucoma gene mutation develops the disease.
Among NYEE's many valuable assets is the New York Glaucoma Progression Study (GAPS) database of clinical and research findings. GAPS contains data from more than 40,000 patients and has helped with understanding the role of risk factors on the development and progression of glaucoma.
- open-angle glaucoma
- angle-closure glaucoma
- normal-tension glaucoma
- secondary glaucoma
- congenital (childhood) glaucoma
- pigmentary glaucoma
- pseudoexfoliative glaucoma
- traumatic glaucoma
- neovascular glaucoma
- irido corneal endothelial syndrome