Sleep Position Can Improve Eye Pressure in Glaucoma Patients

A recent study out of the Department of Ophthalmology and Vision Sciences at the University of Toronto New indicates that glaucoma patients can reduce intraocular pressure by sleeping with their head elevated at a 30-degree angle as opposed to sleeping with their heads flat on a mattress.  This resulted in a 20% lower IOP.  Study participants exhibited no differences in blood pressure or ocular perfusion pressure between the two positions.  Ocular perfusion is the relationship between IOP and blood pressure – another glaucoma marker.

Previous studies had established that raising the head lowers IOP and that lying down supine results in higher IOP.  Scientists found that comparing lying down to a 45 degree raised position from the horizontal results in a 10% to 15% lower IOP.

This new research gives some more specifics to help the glaucoma patient.

Sources:

Ophthalmology,  Feb 24, 2010
http://www.aao.org/publications/eyenet/201101/glaucoma.cfm
http://www.eyeworld.org/article-sleeping-position-alters-intraocular-pressure