Author(s): Hamelin N, Blatrix C, Brion F, Mathieu C, Goemaere I,
Abstract Share this page
Abstract PURPOSE: Evaluate the psychological consequences of announcing the diagnosis of glaucoma. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Two hundred patients completed a 20-item questionnaire designed to analyze the context in which glaucoma was discovered and the patients' reaction to this diagnosis. Behavioral modification in patients and their families are specified as well as their perception of the information received. COMMENTS: Most patients had open-angle glaucoma and showed either an anxious or a passive reaction to the announcement of the diagnosis. Severe anxiety led to prescription of minor tranquilizers or antidepressants in 11\% of cases. Nearly half of the patients declared that they had modified their behavior after receiving the diagnosis, indicating a need to play an active role in disease management. A large majority of the patients were conscious of the risk of blindness related to glaucoma; however, they did not feel ill but rather handicapped . Most were dissatisfied with the information provided by their doctor and sought other sources of information. CONCLUSION: Announcing a diagnosis of glaucoma is a decisive step in the physician-patient relationship, known to be important in future treatment compliance. Better adapted information with regular reevaluation of the need for additional information is necessary. The psychological impact should be evaluated regularly in order to promote an active role on the part of the patient and avoid a decline in quality of life.
This article was published in J Fr Ophtalmol
and referenced in Journal of Clinical & Experimental Ophthalmology