Original Research

A correlational study of systemic blood pressure and intraocular pressure in a young South African adult population*

H. L. Sithole, T. Arbee, N. Nxumalo, N. D. Tshatsha, K. Perumal, Z Mohamed Ali, T. Souza
African Vision and Eye Health | South African Optometrist: Vol 68, No 4 | a176 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/aveh.v68i4.176 | © 2009 H. L. Sithole, T. Arbee, N. Nxumalo, N. D. Tshatsha, K. Perumal, Z Mohamed Ali, T. Souza | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 17 December 2009 | Published: 17 December 2009

About the author(s)

H. L. Sithole, University of KwaZulu-Natal, School of Physiotherapy, South Africa
T. Arbee, University of KwaZulu-Natal, School of Physiotherapy, South Africa
N. Nxumalo, University of KwaZulu-Natal, School of Physiotherapy, South Africa
N. D. Tshatsha, University of KwaZulu-Natal, School of Physiotherapy, South Africa
K. Perumal, University of KwaZulu-Natal, School of Physiotherapy, South Africa
Z Mohamed Ali, University of KwaZulu-Natal, School of Physiotherapy, South Africa
T. Souza, University of KwaZulu-Natal, School of Physiotherapy, South Africa

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Abstract

Increased blood pressure (BP) and raised intraocular pressure (IOP) are probably both common oc-currences among the South African population. If left untreated both conditions have detrimental

complications. Previous cross-sectional studies suggested BP was positively related to IOP. This study therefore sets out to determine in a young South African adult population the correlation between systemic BP and IOP.  Systemic BP was measured using an electronic sphygmomanometer and IOP using a Goldman applanation tonometer. For all subjects, two averages were obtained fromthree measurements each of BP and IOP. Other clinical procedures such as uncompensated visual acuity (VA), pinhole and direct ophthalmoscopy were done to exclude underlying factors possiblyaffecting either BP or IOP before the commencement of the investigation. Two hundred (N = 200)
subjects were included in the study and their ages ranged from 18 to 30 years with a mean of 21 ± 3.9 years. The correlation coefficients between average IOP and average systolic or diastolic BP respectively were 0.67 and 0.55. These weak positive
correlations suggested that with an increase in BP there is a corresponding increase in IOP. Also, similar correlation between IOP and BP was found toexist amongst both males and females with systolic BP having a greater effect. This study validates the
importance of evaluating either systemic BP or IOP amongst all patients seen by primary eye-care practitioners, and that such evaluations should form part of daily routine patient examination.


Keywords

Blood pressure (BP); intraocular pressure (IOP); correlation research; glaucoma

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