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The Wills Eye Glaucoma App: Interest of Patients and Their Caregivers in a Smartphone-based and Tablet-based Glaucoma Application

Waisbourd, Michael MD; Dhami, Hermandeep BSc; Zhou, Chen BSc; Hsieh, Michael BSc; Abichandani, Pramod PhD; Pro, Michael J. MD; Moster, Marlene R. MD; Katz, L. Jay MD; Hark, Lisa A. PhD, RD; Myers, Jonathan S. MD

doi: 10.1097/IJG.0000000000000504
Online Articles: Original Studies

Purpose: To evaluate the interest of glaucoma patients and their caregivers in a smartphone-based and tablet-based glaucoma application (App), developed by the Wills Eye Glaucoma Research Center in collaboration with Drexel University.

Materials and Methods: Cross-sectional survey of patients with glaucoma and their caregivers. Main outcome measures are answers to survey questions regarding how receptive participants are to using the Glaucoma App.

Results: Fifty subjects completed the survey. The mean age (SD) was 59.5 (±17.3) years. A total of 88.6% of the participants lived in a household with access to a smartphone or tablet. The majority (72.3%) of participants would consider downloading the Glaucoma App, and younger participants (<65 y) were more likely to do so compared with their older (≥65 y) counterparts, P=0.025. Participants were more likely to download the App if it was free of charge, compared with a version that costs $3, P=0.018. Although only about one third (37.8%) of participants used eye drop reminders, nearly 3 of 4 (72.9%) participants were receptive to using the automated reminder feature of the Glaucoma App.

Conclusions: Glaucoma patients and their caregivers were very interested in using a Glaucoma App; however, many were not willing to spend $3 for an App they seem to value. The free Wills Eye Glaucoma App currently available on the Apple store, includes educational videos, eye drop and appointment reminders, medical and ocular data storage, visual field tutorial, and intraocular pressure tracker. These features aim to increase patients’ level of knowledge about glaucoma and improve their adherence to medication and follow-up appointment recommendations.

*Glaucoma Research Center, Wills Eye Hospital

Drexel University’s iSchool and College of Engineering, Philadelphia, PA

The Wills Glaucoma App was funded by Wills Eye Hospital (Innovation Grant) and Drexel University.

Disclosure: The authors declare no conflict of interest.

Reprints: Michael Waisbourd, MD, Glaucoma Research Center, Wills Eye Hospital, 840 Walnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19107 (e-mail:

Received November 4, 2015

Accepted July 13, 2016

Copyright © 2016 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. All rights reserved.