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Homemieditorialmivision Issue 198 March 2024

mivision Issue 198 March 2024

Glaucoma Awareness Week runs from 10–16 March 2024.  To arm you with the latest available knowledge on glaucoma diagnosis, management, and interventions, we’ve worked with Glaucoma Australia and called on experts in the field to contribute a diverse array of articles for this issue.

But I encourage you to begin at the beginning with the lead story. It’s the story of a business executive from Western Australia – the son of medical parents – who in his late 40s was shocked to discover that he had glaucoma and, without rapid intervention, would quickly lose his sight.

He was also shocked to discover that he should have been having regular eye health examinations for many years.

You see, like many people, he thought eye examinations were only necessary if your vision was failing. Even when he’d been to see his GP for his mid-life comprehensive health check, he hadn’t been alerted to the need.

Alarmingly, when he suddenly had problems with glare and headaches, he didn’t know who to turn to. It was his mother-in-law who suggested a visit to an optometrist, sensibly pointing him in the direction of Lions Eye Institute in Perth.

When you’re immersed in a profession or area of interest, it’s easy to assume that everyone else has at least an inkling of an understanding about it. Yet Duncan Craib’s story comes as a timely reminder that many people in the community remain unaware of the optometrists’ role – let alone the need for a regular eye check – even those who are worldly and well-educated.

While individual optometrists can’t mount mainstream awareness campaigns, it is possible to generate awareness with social media (see Paul Sallaway’s article on page 110 for ideas to maximise your reach) and by networking with other health professionals in your area.

As we head into Glaucoma Awareness Week, I hope you find the articles in this issue provide conversation starters that help you connect with community, build awareness of your role in their eye health, and generate eye examinations.

Thank you to all the contributors. Enjoy!