Routine screening of older African Americans for glaucoma -- a high-risk group -- would significantly reduce the incidence of blindness at relatively low cost, RPB researchers report in a recently published study.
According to the report, the prevalence of glaucoma-related blindness in this population would fall by half a percentage point if all African Americans in their 50s were screened for the condition with frequency-doubling exams.
Such a program also would cut the prevalence of undiagnosed glaucoma in older African Americans by half and would modestly reduce the frequency of glaucoma-related visual impairment.
The researchers wrote that, although Medicare covers glaucoma screening, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force has declined to recommend it because high-quality evidence from clinical trials is lacking. "... we aimed to help bridge this evidence gap."