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Eur J Ophthalmol. 2005 Jan-Feb;15(1):41-7.

Optic nerve damage in highly myopic eyes with chronic open-angle glaucoma.

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Department of Ophthalmology and Eye Hospital, Faculty of Clinical Medicine Mannheim, University of Heidelberg, Mannheim, Germany.



To compare the amount of optic nerve damage in relation to intraocular pressure in highly myopic eyes with chronic open-angle glaucoma versus non-highly myopic eyes with chronic open-angle glaucoma.


The comparative clinical observational study included 1841 eyes of 1100 patients with chronic open-angle glaucoma. The highly myopic study group consisted of 25 eyes with a myopic refractive error equal to or higher than -8 diopters. It was subdivided into eyes with an optic disc size larger than 2.7 mm2 and eyes with an optic disc smaller than 2.7 mm2. The control group included the remaining, non-highly myopic eyes (n=1816). For all patients, a morphometric analysis of color stereo optic disc photographs was performed. Main outcome measures were morphometric optic disc measurements and intraocular pressure.


In the highly myopic, large-optic-disc study group compared with the control group, maximal and minimal intraocular pressure readings were significantly (p<0.05) lower and neuroretinal rim area corrected for optic disc size was slightly (p=0.16) smaller. Comparing the total highly myopic study group with a control group adjusted for optic disc area, neuroretinal rim area was significantly (p=0.039) smaller in the study group with no significant difference in intraocular pressure measurements between the groups.


At a given intraocular pressure in chronic open-angle glaucoma, optic nerve damage may be more pronounced in highly myopic eyes with large optic discs than in non-highly myopic eyes. This may suggest a higher susceptibility for glaucomatous optic nerve fiber loss in highly myopic eyes than in non-highly myopic eyes.

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