Decreased basal tear turnover in patients with untreated primary open-angle glaucoma

Am J Ophthalmol. 1995 Jul;120(1):41-6. doi: 10.1016/s0002-9394(14)73757-2.


Purpose: To detect whether untreated primary open-angle glaucoma or ocular hypertension is associated with an impaired basal tear turnover.

Methods: Basal tear turnover was determined by fluorophotometry in 18 patients with newly detected, untreated primary open-angle glaucoma and 29 patients with untreated ocular hypertension. The results were compared with those of 27 age-matched control subjects.

Results: The basal tear turnover in glaucoma patients (mean +/- S.D., 11.4 +/- 3.1%/min) was 22% lower than in patients with ocular hypertension (14.7 +/- 3.0%/min; P = .0007) and 27% lower than in control subjects (15.7 +/- 5.3%/min; P = .001). Tear turnover of patients with ocular hypertension did not differ significantly from that of control subjects (P = .4). The basal tear turnover values were found to decrease with increasing vertical or horizontal cup/disk ratios (P = .004 and P = .008, respectively).

Conclusions: Primary open-angle glaucoma, but not ocular hypertension, was found to be associated with an impaired basal tear turnover. Dry eye complaints may originate from decreased basal tear turnover as a result of glaucoma drug therapy as well as from primary open-angle glaucoma itself.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Dry Eye Syndromes / physiopathology
  • Female
  • Fluorophotometry
  • Glaucoma, Open-Angle / metabolism*
  • Glaucoma, Open-Angle / physiopathology
  • Humans
  • Intraocular Pressure
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Ocular Hypertension / metabolism*
  • Ocular Hypertension / physiopathology
  • Tears / metabolism*