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October 1964

Effect of Oral Glycerol on Intraocular Pressure in Normal and Glaucomatous Eyes

Author Affiliations

Vancouver, BC, Canada
From The Ophthalmology Research Unit, University of British Columbia, and Department of Ophthalmology, Shaughnessy Hospital, Department of Veterans Affairs.

Arch Ophthalmol. 1964;72(4):491-493. doi:10.1001/archopht.1964.00970020491009

The osmotic agents have recently reappeared in the management of acute rises of intraocular pressure and as an adjunct in producing preoperative hypotension required prior to ocular surgery. Urea and mannitol have the obvious drawback of intravenous administration and have been reported to produce pulmonary edema and anginal pain due to the rather sudden increase in blood volume. The appearance of reports1-3 that 50% glycerol by mouth can produce comparable osmotic changes with a reduction in intraocular pressure was therefore significant. The literature also suggests that tromethamine (THAM,4 tris-(hydroxymethyle)aminomethane) may be an even better oral osmotic agent but it has yet to be tried in a large number of patients.

The present report deals with the effect on intraocular pressure and serum osmolarity of 50% glycerol by mouth in 10 nonglaucomatous and 14 glaucomatous eyes.

Method  All patients had their intraocular pressures recorded with a certified Schiotz tonometer

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