To determine the association between glaucoma and travel away from home.
Fifty-nine glaucoma suspect controls with normal vision and 80 glaucoma subjects with bilateral visual field (VF) loss wore a cellular tracking device during 1 week of normal activity. Location data were used to evaluate the number of daily excursions away from home as well as daily time spent away from home.
Control and glaucoma subjects were similar in age, race, sex, employment, driving support, cognitive ability, mood, and comorbid illness (p > 0.1 for all). Better-eye VF mean deviation (MD) averaged 0.0 decibels (dB) in controls and −11.1 dB in glaucoma subjects. In multivariable models, glaucoma was associated with fewer daily excursions (β = −0.20; 95% confidence interval [95% CI], −0.38 to −0.02) and a greater likelihood of not leaving home on a given day (odds ratio [OR], 1.82; 95% CI, 1.05 to 3.06). Each 5-dB decrement in the better-eye VF MD was associated with fewer daily excursions (β = −0.06; 95% CI, −0.11 to −0.01) and a greater chance of not leaving home on a given day (OR, 1.24; 95% CI, 1.04 to 1.47). Time spent away from home did not significantly differ between the glaucoma subjects and suspects (p = 0.18). However, each 5-dB decrement in the better-eye MD was associated with 6% less time away (95% CI, −12 to −1%).
Individuals with glaucoma, particularly those with greater VF loss, are more home bound and travel away from home less than individuals with normal vision. Because being confined to the home environment may have detrimental effects on fitness and health, individuals with glaucoma should be considered for interventions such as orientation and mobility training to encourage safe travel away from home.