Big data has helped researchers discover that patients with uveitic glaucoma are nearly two times more likely to have rapid visual field progression and associated vision loss than primary open-angle glaucoma (POAG) patients, according to a new study.

Using electronic medical records data, researchers identified 672 uveitis plus glaucoma patients and 22,168 POAG patients from five regionally different glaucoma clinics in the United Kingdom. After analyzing the visual fields data also available for these patients (792,000 visual fields in total), the researchers realized 12.3% of those with uveitic glaucoma had rapid visual field loss, compared with 6.8% of those with POAG—the risk of progression is nearly double for with uveitis.

“It is important to identify this high risk group and enable early targeted treatment to preserve optic nerve function,” the researchers concluded. Their paper was presented yesterday morning at the ARVO annual conference in Honolulu, Hawaii.

Liu X, Kelly SR, Barry RJ, et al. Rapid visual field progression in uveitic glaucoma: evidence from ‘big data’ collected in glaucoma clinics in the United Kingdom. ARVO 2018. Abstract 1138.