The purpose of the study is:
- To further determine the nature of vision loss and optic nerve structural change associated with glaucoma. Using recently developed psychophysical and imaging techniques, we will continue use of a multivariate approach for analysis of the functional and structural changes associated with glaucoma to delineate further the relationship of these changes to the underlying physiological mechanisms associated with magnocellular, small bistratified "blue-yellow", and parvocellular neural pathways.
- To evaluate and improve new diagnostic and monitoring techniques encompassing measures of visual function and optic nerve and retina nerve fiber layer structure and to compare the rate and patterns of progression of glaucomatous damage
- To improve techniques for evaluation of current management and new therapies for glaucoma as they become available. We will expand our analysis using multivariate techniques incorporating visual function, optic nerve structure, and various risk factors to improve detection of true change.
- To determine the quantitative temporal relationships between recognizable optic nerve damage and measurable visual field loss. Using new techniques with improved sensitivity, the detection and monitoring of early optic disc defects may provide profiles of people at risk for developing glaucomatous visual function loss thus better defining target populations for treatment.
SPECIFIC AIMS OF DIGS: STRUCTURAL ASSESSMENT Overall Aim: Develop improved methods to 1) detect the onset and progression of structural damage due to glaucoma, and 2) to measure the rate of glaucomatous progression and its determinants, and 3) characterize the relationship between structural and functional change over time. In addition, a major goal of this research is to develop methods to shorten the time frame needed to identify and verify progression of optic disc and retinal nerve fiber damage.
SPECIFIC AIMS OF DIGS: VISUAL FUNCTION Overall Aim: Develop improved measures to detect the onset and progression of glaucoma, to assess treatment effectiveness, and to validate predictive genetic testing using psychophysical measures of visual function.