Study Aims

Aim 1:

To characterize the relationship of VF loss severity on fall rates in glaucoma patients. Fall rates will be measured a a rate over time, as well as a rate over steps taken. Steps will be measured in the subject’s normal routine using a waistband accelerometer. Understanding the relationship between disease severity and fall rates will identify which glaucoma patients are at a particularly high risk of falling, and therefore merit interventions to prevent falls.

Aim 2:

To identify potentially modifiable risk factors for falls in glaucoma patients. Risk factors to be evaluated will include features of the patient (e.g. balance and lower extremity strength), features of the environment (e.g. the number of hazards noted in a direct assessment of the home), and activity patterns (e.g. the amount of accelerometer-defined walking and the amount of travel outside the home as measured through a cellular tracking device). Outcomes from aim 2 will guide which features of the person should be targeted in programs to prevent falls in glaucoma.

Aim 3:

To characterize the downstream consequences of falls in glaucoma. Specifically, this aim will characterize whether higher fall rates are associated with increases in fear of falling, decreases in self-reported quality of life, decreases in daily walking and physical activity (measured through annual week-long accelerometer trials), and decrease in the number of excursions outside the home or the amount of time spent outside the home (measured through the use of annual week- long trials with a cellular tracking device. Outcomes from Aim 3 will guide which strategies should be used to prevent falls in glaucoma, while also addressing other aspects of mobility restriction.

Study Overview:

When coming in for a FIGS visit, we will review what will happen during your visit. We provide calendars for data tracking for any near falls or falls. A peripheral 60 (P-60) screening visual field test is performed to test far out in your peripheral vision. Several measures are taken, including height, weight, gait, balance. Other vision tests include visual acuity, color vision, and contrast sensitivity. One of our study coordinates will also perform a home assessment to evaluate fall hazards, including stair handrails, lighting, floor friction, and width of doorways and hallways. Study devices (a pedometer and GPS) are distributed with instructions on how to wear them and for how long. These relatively small devices help us track mobility and how many steps you take. The reason all of this is being evaluated is to help create falls prevention programs in the future and improve quality of life for glaucoma patients.