It is often claimed that glaucoma is not a primary ocular disease, but, rather, is a manifestation of some generalized vascular or neurovascular upset—``the sick eye in the sick body." This assertion appears to receive support from the frequent association of glaucoma with cardiovascular disease, but whether this correlation is significant remains to be proved. It is reasonable to assume, however, that if such disease had an incidence among the glaucomatous higher than in the general population, then the former should show a shorter expectation of life than average.
Few investigations to check the validity of this assertion have been undertaken. Duke-Elder2 (1955) states that such a deviation does exist, however.
In the course of a larger investigation, I took the opportunity to put this matter to the test. This involved the follow-up of all cases of primary acute congestive and chronic simple glaucoma operated on at the Southampton
BENNETT G. Mortality Rates in Glaucomatous Subjects. AMA Arch Ophthalmol. 1955;54(5):637–640. doi:10.1001/archopht.1955.00930020643001
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