Acquired Childhood Glaucoma More Common Than Congenital

In one-county sample, overall incidence 2.29 per 100,000; acquired, secondary most common

THURSDAY, April 15 (HealthDay News) -- Over a 40-year period in Olmstead County, Minn., the incidence of childhood glaucoma was 2.29 per 100,000 residents younger than 20, with acquired and secondary forms of the condition being most common and juvenile and congenital glaucoma being rare, according to research published in the April issue of the Archives of Ophthalmology.

Elisabeth P. Aponte, M.D., of the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., and colleagues conducted a retrospective review of the medical records of all patients under the age of 20 living in Olmstead County, Minn., between 1965 and 2004 who were diagnosed with glaucoma or glaucoma suspect.

The researchers found that 30 patients were diagnosed with glaucoma during the study period, which corresponds to an overall incidence of 2.29 per 100,000 residents younger than 20 years. Acquired (1.46 per 100,000) and secondary (0.45 per 100,000) glaucoma were the most common. The incidences of primary childhood glaucoma, juvenile glaucoma and primary congenital glaucoma were found to be 0.38, 0.32 and 0.07 per 100,000, respectively. The researchers also identified 24 individuals with glaucoma suspect, corresponding to an incidence of 1.9 per 100,000.

"The difference in incidence between this and other studies may be attributable to a number of reasons. First, some of the reported incidences are not population based and are likely to have been artificially elevated. Second, the diagnostic classification and inclusion criteria for childhood glaucomas have been inconsistent among studies. Finally, race and consanguinity may affect the incidence of primary congenital glaucoma," the authors write.

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