Meditation decreases IOP in primary open angle glaucoma

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Mindful meditation decreased intraocular pressure (IOP) and changed trabecular meshwork (TM) gene expression in patients with primary open angle glaucoma (POAG), according to a study in the American Journal of Ophthalmology.

In this parallel arm, single masked, randomized controlled trial, 60 patients with POAG with IOP ≥ 21 mmHg on maximal topical medication and scheduled for trabeculectomy, were included. Half of the participants (n = 30) underwent mindful meditation for 45 minutes per day for 3 weeks in addition to medical therapy and the other half (n = 30) underwent only medial therapy.

After 3 weeks, a significant decrease in IOP was seen in the group who underwent mindful meditation compared to the group undergoing medical therapy alone. The change in IOP was significantly higher in the mediation group than the medical therapy alone group.

Significant upregulation of nitric oxide synthetase (1 and 3) and neuroprotective genes with downregulation of proinflammatory genes were found in the mediation group compared to the therapy alone group.

The authors concluded that the results indicated that mindful meditation has a direct impact on ocular tissues.

Dada T, Bhai N, Midha N, et al. Effect of mindfulness meditation on intraocular pressure and trabecular meshwork gene expression: A randomised controlled trial. Am J Ophthalmol. 2020; DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ajo.2020.10.012

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