Date: Fri 05/03/2021 - Sun 05/03/2023
Optometrist Credits: 0.50 Glaucoma Event Credits
Event Type(s): Online
Number: 09 929 3273
Glaucoma is a common eye condition that optometrists and ophthalmologists need to manage. The initial diagnosis is often unexpected by patients, and the uncertainty of living with a condition that could take away their vision is both worrying and terrifying for them. The diagnosis carries many psychosocial burdens. Patients may feel like they need to endure these by themselves, especially if they are left unsupported. It is vital that the clinician be holistically supportive of their patients as glaucoma is a life-long, often progressive condition. A good clinician-patient relationship can encourage treatment compliance and prevent vision loss.
In my 10+ year career as a doctor, I have come to understand that the psychosocial impact of a chronic disease diagnosis runs a lot deeper than what is seen on the surface. It has increasingly become one of my priorities to learn the unique psychosocial needs of each of my patients so that I can better serve them. Perhaps the best ways to describe this side of care is to ‘walk with them through life’, or similarly, ‘to be on the journey alongside them’. Here, I will describe a case that came into my office recently and then I will use this case to illustrate the psychosocial impact of glaucoma.
At the completion of this CPD Activity, participants should be able to:
- Be aware of the large range of emotional reactions that the prospect of visual loss can trigger,
- Understand the challenges that progressing glaucoma may have on a patient emotionally, physically and financially,
- Feel more prepared to discuss a glaucoma diagnosis with your patients, and
- Realise the importance of delivering measured, appropriate information and building on it.