Brain pressure may be linked to glaucoma risk

Low intracranial pressure could play a role in the development of glaucoma among patients who have normal intraocular pressure

Pixabay/Raman Oza

Scientists have explored low brain pressure as a potential factor in the development of glaucoma among patients with normal intraocular pressure (IOP).

A study led by researchers from Kaunas University of Technology in Lithuania examined 80 early-stage glaucoma patients with normal IOP.

As well as IOP and intracranial pressure, scientists calculated the difference between the pressure in the eye and the pressure in the brain, known as the translaminar pressure difference (TPD).

The researchers found that low brain pressure was associated with more significant changes to patient’s visual field, especially in the nasal zone.

In the study, which was published in Diagnostics, intracranial measurements were obtained using non-invasive technology developed by the Kaunas University of Technology.

The Transcranial Doppler (Vittamed UAB, Lithuania) measures brain pressure through the eye using ultrasound.

The study authors highlighted that further research is required to understand the role of intracranial pressure as a potential biomarker in normal-tension glaucoma patients.

Professor Arminas Ragauskas, from Kaunas University of Technology, highlighted that treatments that prevent further damage to the optic nerve by reducing eye pressure are ineffective for glaucoma patients with normal eye pressure.

“There is a growing awareness among the scientific community, that glaucoma is a condition caused by two pressures – inside the eye and the skull,” he said.