Eye Health News

Glaucoma medication costs are draining wallets

A study published online in the Archives of Ophthalmology highlights the dramatic increase in spending on glaucoma medications from 2001 to 2006. Most notably, the increase in spending was the most significant among women, those on public-funded insurance and those with less than a high school education. The study involved the analysis of the trends of glaucoma medication expenditure in 1,404 people aged 18 years and older who participated in the U.S. Medical Expenditure Panel Survey between 2001 and 2006. The expenditure was adjusted for inflation. What researchers found was a substantial increase in the average annual glaucoma medication expenditure per person. The expenditure was $445 in 2001 and jumped to $557 in 2006. Researchers attribute this increase to several factors. The most commonly used therapy for glaucoma is prescription eye drops. They believe the increase in the use of these drops which can contain prostaglandin analogs as well as changes in insurance coverage were factors in the increased spending on glaucoma medications.  An alternative to the eye drops is CoolLaser SLT and you can learn more about this therapy by watching the video below from Dr. Krawitz:* Elise Ervin Staff Writer

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