Purpose: To investigate the feasibility of a glaucoma triage assessment based on the consideration of clinical data in a virtual clinic environment.
Methods: One hundred consecutive new patients were assessed by masked observers for a possible diagnosis of glaucoma or ocular hypertension by evaluation of clinical data compiled by a technician in the absence of the patient. The virtual clinic diagnoses were compared with those made by actual examination of the patient in the outpatient clinic.
Results: A total of 22% of subjects were excluded from interobserver comparison because of atypical scanning laser ophthalmoscopy. Of the 78% of subjects completing virtual and actual clinical assessments diagnostic agreement was good, weighted Kappa was of 0.72 (95% confidence interval 0.85 to 0.59), sensitivity 94.4% and specificity 86.7%. No case of glaucoma was misdiagnosed as normal by virtual assessment.
Conclusion: Clinical findings and data relating to glaucoma may be evaluated in a virtual clinic with satisfactory diagnostic accuracy.