Ophthalmology is the branch of medicine that relates to the study, diagnosis, and treatment of conditions that affect the eye.
What conditions affect the eye?
The most common eye conditions include refractive errors (for example, myopia, hyperopia, astigmatism, and presbyopia), glaucoma, cataracts, and retinal conditions, such as age-related macular degeneration and diabetic retinopathy. Common eye conditions that are apparent from a young age include amblyopia (lazy eye) and strabismus (ocular misalignment).
What eye conditions are inherited?
There are over 350 heritable eye conditions, with up to 60% of blindness among children caused by inherited eye disorders1. Genetic eye disorders include congenital cataracts, congenital glaucoma, and retinal dystrophies such as retinitis pigmentosa, Stargardt macular dystrophy and Usher syndrome.
How are eye conditions treated?
Eye conditions are treated by ophthalmologists who may specialise in one or more eye conditions. Treatments vary depending on the eye condition, and include strategies such as eyeglasses, prescription medications, surgery, photodynamic therapy, and laser therapy or laser eye surgery, amongst others. Gene therapy for eye conditions are also now available to help slow down and prevent blindness for some forms of inherited retinal dystrophies or degenerative eye conditions3.
Related news and insights
Outlook Therapeutics presented pivotal safety and efficacy data from the Phase III NORSE TWO trial for ONS 5010 (bevacizumab) for use in wet age-related macular degeneration (wet AMD) and other retinal indications.
Genentech/Roche announced that the FDA has approved Susvimo (ranibizumab injection) 100 mg/mL for intravitreal use via ocular implant for the treatment of people with wet, or neovascular, age-related macular degeneration (AMD) who have previously responded to at least two anti-vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) injections.
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- Gilbert C, Foster A. Childhood blindness in the context of VISION 2020--the right to sight. Bull World Health Organ. 2001;79(3):227–32.
- Couser NL, Brooks BP, Drack AV, Shankar SP. The evolving role of genetics in ophthalmology. Ophthalmic Genet. 2021:1-4. doi: 10.1080/13816810.2020.1868011.
- Guimaraes TAC, Georgiou M, Bainbridge JWB, Michaelides M. Gene therapy for neovascular age-related macular degeneration: rationale, clinical trials and future directions. Br J Ophthalmol. 2021;105(2):151–157.