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Study Finds Glaucoma Drug Effective

Xalatan lowers pressure inside eye, Swedish researchers say

TUESDAY, July 13, 2004 (HealthDayNews) -- A Swedish study finds that the most commonly prescribed ophthalmology drug is safe and effective.

The drug, latanoprost (sold by Pfizer Inc. under the brand name Xalatan), lowers intraocular pressure in glaucoma patients, said Dr. Albert Alm of University Hospital in Uppsala, Sweden.

Glaucoma is a condition in which the pressure inside the eye rises. If left untreated, glaucoma can damage the optic nerve and other parts of the eye, and can lead to blindness.

About 70 percent of the 380 patients participating in the drug trial received some relief from the drops, Alm said.

Also, 127 participants had increased iris pigmentation in one or both eyes, a sign that the drug helped improve vision.

The report appears in the July issue of the Archives of Ophthalmology.

More information

The National Eye Institute has more about glaucoma.

SOURCES: American Medical Association, news release, July 12, 2004
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