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Using Technology to Assess Patient-recorded Outcomes in Glaucoma Treatment

In This Video

  • David S. Friedman, MD, PhD, MPH, is a clinician scientist and director of the Glaucoma Service at Mass Eye and Ear/Massachusetts General Hospital Department of Ophthalmology and professor of Ophthalmology at Harvard Medical School
  • Dr. Friedman discusses piloting a novel way to assess patient-reported outcomes during glaucoma treatment
  • Using computer-assisted testing, patients can report on emotional well-being, mobility, self-care and inconvenience of treatment in a brief survey before they meet with the doctor, allowing the doctor to address the issues at the appointment

David S. Friedman, MD, PhD, MPH, is a clinician scientist and director of the Glaucoma Service at Mass Eye and Ear/Massachusetts General Hospital Department of Ophthalmology and professor of Ophthalmology at Harvard Medical School. In the video, he discusses a pilot program to assess patient-reported outcomes during treatment for glaucoma. Using computer-assisted testing, patients can report on emotional well-being, mobility, self-care and inconvenience of treatment easily in a brief survey before they meet with the doctor, allowing the doctor and patient to address the issues during the appointment.

A research project that I'm currently working on is piloting a novel way to assess patient-reported outcomes. Many of the treatments we provide for glaucoma may lower pressure or alter vision or visual field over time, but how they impact patients in their daily lives is often not clear. This new approach uses a computer-assisted testing design so that patients can report on emotional well-being, mobility, self-care and inconvenience of treatment easily in a brief survey. We've already administered this survey to nearly a hundred patients, and it really is quite responsive to glaucoma severity. We're hoping that this can become a major tool for care, as well as for research studies.

One of the real benefits of having this computer-assisted test is that it allows us to gather this information as you enter the room with a patient. So, you receive a summary of how they're doing, and it enables you as the physician to bring up key areas for that patient. As an example, several of my patients reported significant limitations in mobility, and I was completely unaware of that. I think that we often treat the numbers in the clinic, and this will allow us to be more holistic in our thinking about how we're treating the patient. One of the key outcomes that the FDA and other organizations are requiring in new therapies is an assessment of the impact on the patient. I think this approach, which is a quite simplified and streamlined design, will allow for easy implementation of patient-reported outcomes in clinical research.

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