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What do patients with glaucoma see: a novel iPad app to improve glaucoma patient awareness of visual field loss
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  • Published on:
    Dimness and blur

    I read with interest the paper by Gagrani and colleagues, regarding the self-characterisation of visual field loss by glaucoma patients, and the development of an app to allow this to be measured.1

    The study helps to further understand the experience of glaucoma patients. Their experimental results support the view that patients experience their visual field defects as blur rather than 'black holes'. Hu et al found the most common subjective symptoms in glaucoma were "needing more light" (57%) and "blurry vision" (55%).2 In the study by Gagrani et al., subjects were able to modify both dimness and blur, though in practice they did not choose to use the dimness response at all.

    It is possible that differences in the measurement tools might potentially influence these findings. For example, patients may have found the dim response more difficult to use.

    The potential for this app to allow patients to better understand and self-pictoralise their visual disability is poignant and important. It will be interesting to see whether this novel approach yields similar results when replicated in future.

    1. Gagrani M, Ndulue J, Anderson D, Kedar S, Gulati V, Shepherd J, et al. What do patients with glaucoma see: a novel iPad app to improve glaucoma patient awareness of visual field loss. Br J Ophthalmol. 2020 Nov 20.
    2. Hu CX, Zangalli C, Hsieh M, et al. What do patients with glaucoma see? Visual symptoms...

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    Conflict of Interest:
    None declared.