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Homemieditorialmivision Issue 187 March 2023

mivision Issue 187 March 2023

Although relatively rare, paediatric glaucoma is a leading cause of irreversible childhood blindness worldwide, and accounts for an estimated 6.9% of childhood vision impairment.

If you’re like me, you’ve probably never had direct contact with a child who lives with glaucoma.

I am exceptionally fortunate to have three healthy adult children who’ve made it through the world to date with no major health issues. I can’t imagine how it feels to have a child born with glaucoma. I can’t imagine being a child, growing up in an increasingly complex world, blinded by glaucoma.

So how can we begin to understand what they’re going through? And how can we empathise with them and their parents?

In this special glaucoma issue, we shed light on what it means to be a child with glaucoma with a raft of articles prepared by specialists in the field.

Orthoptist/PhD candidate Lachlan Knight explores findings from a fascinating survey of the lived experiences of kids with glaucoma, their parents, and carers.

Optometrist Anna Delmadoros provides an overview of the symptoms to look out for when examining paediatric patients; and strategies to manage the challenges of communication and treatment.

To assist with diagnosis, ophthalmologist Dr Jon Ruddle gets into more detail about the major subtypes of childhood glaucoma that may present, while Drs Elias Kehdi and Amy Wang explore surgical options for treatment.

But that’s just a snippet of our glaucoma issue. Our lead story looks at the significant costs of glaucoma on our society, we explore local glaucoma research that’s building our knowledge of this disease, and new technologies.

And we also pay tribute to ophthalmologist Professor Ivan Goldberg – the truly gentle man who co-founded Glaucoma Australia and in doing so, has made a difference to the lives of tens of thousands of people.

Thank you to Glaucoma Australia for its support in bringing this issue together. Thank you also to the generous contributors, especially at a time when eye care professionals are pushed to capacity.

Enjoy this issue.