Newer Glaucoma Treatments May Be Best For Less Advanced Disease Interview with:
Pradeep Ramulu MD MHS PhD

Associate Professor of Ophthalmology
Wilmer Eye Institute
Johns Hopkins University

MedicalResearch: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Dr. Ramulu: Looking at what procedures are used allows us to understand what doctors are doing, and how the landscape of our field is changing. We noted that overall numbers for glaucoma procedures were down – a surprise given that our population is aging, there are more Medicare beneficiaries, and there have not been recent advances in medical therapy for glaucoma.

MedicalResearch: What should clinicians and patients take away from your report?

Dr. Ramulu: There is a strong trend towards newer glaucoma procedures, particularly endocyclophotocoagulation, external mini-shunts, and canaloplasty. At the same time, traditional procedures such as trabeculectomy and tube shunts are still quite common, and the growth of these newer procedures should not imply that they treat glaucoma better than conventional therapies. It is also important for patients to realize that these newer therapies are often best suited as an initial therapy for less advanced disease.

MedicalResearch: What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?

Dr. Ramulu: Our hope is that there is increasing research to help understand the efficacy of these newer treatments in the treatment of glaucoma, particularly in the form of head-to-head trials with more conventional therapy.


Use of Various Glaucoma Surgeries and Procedures in Medicare Beneficiaries from 1994 to 2012

Arora, Karun S. et al.


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Pradeep Ramulu MD MHS PhD, Associate Professor of Ophthalmology, Wilmer Eye Institute, & Johns Hopkins University (2015). Newer Glaucoma Treatments May Be Best For Less Advanced Disease