Population-based persistency rates for topical glaucoma medications measured with pharmacy claims data

Am J Manag Care. 2002 Aug;8(10 Suppl):S255-61.


Background: Persistency with drug therapy reflects a number of factors, including patient tolerability of adverse events resulting from therapy and clinician satisfaction with the medication's effectiveness in reducing intraocular pressure.

Objective: This study assesses persistency with topical glaucoma medications administered as initial therapy by evaluating rates of discontinuation and change in therapy.

Methods: A retrospective cohort study was conducted using pharmacy claims data from 3 geographically diverse healthcare plans. Newly treated glaucoma patients younger than 65 years of age were selected based on an initial glaucoma medication fill during a 12-month period. Patients were followed for persistency, defined as discontinuation or change (switch or add-on) of initial glaucoma therapy; discontinuation of therapy was also evaluated as a separate end point.

Results: In all, 1330 patients (followed for 1126 person-years) met the eligibility criteria. Compared with latanoprost users, patients initiated on other topical monotherapies were more likely to discontinue or change therapy, and patients initiated on other topical monotherapies were more likely than latanoprost users to discontinue therapy.

Conclusion: Population-based data indicate that latanoprost offers superior persistency compared to agents from other popular classes of topical ocular hypotensives.

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Topical
  • Antihypertensive Agents / administration & dosage*
  • Female
  • Glaucoma / drug therapy*
  • Humans
  • Insurance Claim Review
  • Intraocular Pressure / drug effects
  • Latanoprost
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Ophthalmic Solutions / administration & dosage*
  • Patient Compliance*
  • Proportional Hazards Models
  • Prostaglandins F, Synthetic / administration & dosage*
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Self Administration
  • Survival Analysis


  • Antihypertensive Agents
  • Ophthalmic Solutions
  • Prostaglandins F, Synthetic
  • Latanoprost