Measurements of reversibility of optic disc cupping and pallor in ocular hypertension and glaucoma

Ophthalmology. 1985 Oct;92(10):1396-1407. doi: 10.1016/s0161-6420(85)33850-2.


Four cases are presented of young and elderly glaucoma patients who had both surgical and medical therapy and showed reversal of cupping and pallor of the optic disc. The cupping was measured by photogrammetry and the pallor by computerized image analysis from photographs of the optic disc. Two patients showed regression of visual field loss. The optic disc and visual field changes corresponded to the changes in ocular pressures, generally showing worsening with an increase in ocular pressure. With a decrease in ocular pressure there was regression of visual field loss and a decrease in cupping; pallor did not decrease consistently. The changes in cupping and pallor in some patients followed similar courses but in others behaved in an independent manner. It is proposed that these new sensitive and reproducible techniques for measuring changes in the optic disc may allow the detection of disc changes early in the disease, prior to visual field loss. If treatment is begun at this time, reversal of optic disc changes may occur.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Child
  • Female
  • Glaucoma / pathology*
  • Glaucoma / physiopathology
  • Glaucoma / therapy
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Ocular Hypertension / pathology*
  • Ocular Hypertension / physiopathology
  • Ocular Hypertension / therapy
  • Optic Disk / pathology*
  • Photography
  • Visual Fields