Purpose of review: Over the past several years, numerous clinical trials in glaucoma have contributed to our understanding of the medical and surgical treatment of the disease. The goal of this review is to summarize the findings and conclusions of what the authors feel are the key clinical trials in glaucoma.
Recent findings: One of the major findings of Low-Pressure Glaucoma Treatment study was that patients randomized to the brimonidine group were statistically less likely to have progressive visual field loss than those randomized to the timolol group, even though there was no significant difference between the intraocular pressure (IOP)-lowering effect of these two drugs. The Ocular Hypertension Treatment Study has effectively demonstrated that patients with ocular hypertension should be risk stratified prior to initiation of treatment and that it appears to be relatively safe to delay treatment in low-risk patients. The 3-year canaloplasty study demonstrates the long-term safety and efficacy of this surgery. However, it also demonstrates that canaloplasty can deliver a modest IOP reduction and therefore is likely more suited for patients with mild damage and a higher target IOP. The 1-year results from the Ahmed Baerveldt Comparison Study do not demonstrate a clear superiority of one implant over the other. These findings are consistent with prior retrospective studies in the literature.
Summary: These four studies have furthered our understanding of the field of glaucoma and provided key insights into the medical and surgical management of patients with this complex disease.