Background An optic disc haemorrhage (DH) has been associated with subsequent structural glaucoma progression, but it is unknown if there is structural progression prior to a DH. We evaluated a cohort of patients to determine whether structural progression occurs before a DH, after a DH or is simply associated with a DH.
Methods Eyes meeting inclusion criteria were placed into two groups. Group 1 included eyes that each had a baseline photograph of the optic nerve and a photograph with a DH at follow-up. Group 2 included eyes that each had a photograph of the optic nerve with a DH at baseline and a photograph at follow-up. Flicker images were created and graded by two ophthalmologists for structural glaucomatous change. We compared the proportion of structural progressors between Groups 1 and 2. Patient characteristics were also compared between the two groups.
Results 49 patients and 51 unique eyes were included. Groups 1 and 2 had 28 and 38 sets of photographs, respectively. The proportion of global progression in Groups 1 and 2 were 21.4% and 39.5%, respectively ( p=0.12). No significant differences in any structural progression feature and patient characteristics (besides age at time of DH (p=0.04) between the two groups were found.
Conclusions Patients show structural glaucomatous progression before and after the event of a disc haemorrhage without significant differences. This suggests that a DH is an ongoing structural progression in glaucoma and may not be a discrete event that leads to subsequent progression.