Topical apraclonidine hydrochloride in eyes with poorly controlled glaucoma

A. L. Robin, R. Ritch, D. Shin, B. Smythe, T. Mundorf, R. P. Lehmann, G. L. Spaeth

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Object: We determined whether the addition of topical apraclonidine hydrochloride to eyes receiving maximal medical therapy, with inadequate intraocular pressure (IOP) control, and scheduled to undergo surgery, could adequately lower IOP, postponing the need for surgical intervention. Design: A prospective, 90 day, multi-centered, placebo-controlled, double-masked parallel study. Patients: We enrolled 174 glaucoma patients with inadequate IOP control on maximally tolerated medical therapy. All were candidates for either laser trabeculoplasty or invasive surgical intervention. We enrolled only one eye per patient. Interventions: We continued to administer maximum- tolerated medical therapy for glaucoma. Patients took the study medication every eight hours. Study medications were either apraclonidine hydrochloride 0.5% or placebo (apraclonidine's vehicle). Major Outcome Measures: We evaluated lOP, IOP change from baseline, and the number of eyes requiring surgery after the addition of study medication. Results: Sixty one percent of patients treated with apraclonidine maintained adequate IOP control throughout the study, avoiding additional surgery compared to 33.9% patients treated with placebo (P <.001). Apraclonidine treatment resulted in significantly more patients achieving either an additional ≥20% reduction in IOP from baseline (resulting an IOP ≤ 20 mm Hg) (P < 0.05). The most common ocular complications were conjunctival hyperemia (12.6%), itching and foreign body sensation (6.8%), and tearing (4.5%). The most frequent non-ocular adverse events related to apraclonidine were dry mouth (4.5%) and unusual taste perception (2.2%). Conclusions: Apraclonidine appears safe and efficacious. It significantly lowered IOP when used in combination with a patient's maximum tolerated medical therapy. This delayed or prevented further glaucoma surgery for at least 90 days in approximately 60% of treated patients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)421-441
Number of pages21
JournalTransactions of the American Ophthalmological Society
StatePublished - 1995

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology


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