African American patient-provider communication about glaucoma vision quality-of-life

Eye (Lond). 2024 Feb;38(2):343-348. doi: 10.1038/s41433-023-02693-8. Epub 2023 Aug 14.


Background/objectives: Little is known about African American patient-provider communication about glaucoma-related quality-of-life. The objectives of this study were to: (a) examine associations between patient socio-demographics and vision quality-of-life, (b) describe the extent to which eye care providers and patients discuss glaucoma-related quality-of-life, and (c) examine associations between patient and provider characteristics, whether the patient was in the intervention or usual care group, and whether the patient and provider discuss one or more glaucoma-related quality-of-life domains.

Methods: Adult African American patients with glaucoma who reported non-adherence to glaucoma medications were enrolled from three sites. Patients completed a vision quality-of-life VFQ-25 assessment. Patients were randomized into intervention and control groups with intervention group members receiving a glaucoma question prompt list and watching a video before a provider visit. Audio recordings from these visits were transcribed and assessed for glaucoma-related quality-of-life discussions.

Results: One hundred and eighty-nine patients were enrolled. Glaucoma-related quality-of-life was discussed during 12.3% of visits (N = 23). Patients initiated discussion 56.5% (N = 13) of the time and providers 43.5% (N = 10) of the time. Patients with worse health literacy (p < 0.001), more depressive symptoms (p < 0.05), and more severe glaucoma (p < 0.001) were significantly more likely to have worse vision-related quality-of-life. Glaucoma-related quality-of-life was significantly more likely to be discussed when African American patients saw African American providers (p < 0.05).

Conclusion: Patients and providers rarely discussed the patient's glaucoma-related quality-of-life. The intervention did not significantly increase communication about glaucoma-related quality-of-life. Residency programs should consider enhancing training regarding discussing patients' quality-of-life.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Black or African American*
  • Communication
  • Glaucoma* / drug therapy
  • Humans
  • Quality of Life