Steroid-induced glaucoma: Epidemiology, pathophysiology, and clinical management

Surv Ophthalmol. 2020 Jul-Aug;65(4):458-472. doi: 10.1016/j.survophthal.2020.01.002. Epub 2020 Feb 11.


Glucocorticoids are a class of anti-inflammatory drugs commonly used to treat various ocular and systemic conditions. Although the role of glucocorticoids in the treatment of numerous serious inflammatory diseases is pivotal, their prolonged use may increase intraocular pressure resulting in steroid-induced glaucoma. We provide a detailed update on steroid-induced glaucoma as a preventable cause of blindness in the adult and pediatric population and describe its epidemiology, social impact, and risk factors. Furthermore, we explore the propensity of different steroids to increase the intraocular pressure, the role of different routes of steroid administration, dosage and duration of treatment, as well as the clinical features, genetics, and management of steroid-induced glaucoma.

Keywords: corticosteroids; intraocular pressure; optic neuropathy; steroid-induced glaucoma.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Glaucoma / chemically induced*
  • Glaucoma / epidemiology
  • Glaucoma / therapy
  • Global Health
  • Glucocorticoids / adverse effects*
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Intraocular Pressure / drug effects*
  • Risk Factors
  • Visual Acuity*


  • Glucocorticoids