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IMPULSE Study: Impact of COVID-19 in the present of ophthalmology focusing on ocular surface and future trends

HumanInsight IMPULSE Study: Impact of COVID-19 in the present of ophthalmology focusing on ocular surface and future trends

Arch Soc Esp Oftalmol. 2023 Jan 24. doi: 10.1016/j.oftal.2023.01.004. Online ahead of print.


INTRODUCTION AND OBJECTIVE: Digital evolution represents an opportunity for ophthalmology to adapt to new care models. This study aimed to find out how the pandemic has modified the clinical practice and training activities of the ophthalmologist specialized in ocular surface, as well as to analyze emerging trends and needs.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: This study was carried out through an online survey. A committee of 3 specialists developed a questionnaire of 25 questions structured in: 1) Participant profile; 2) Impact of the pandemic on patient management and professional activities; 3) Trends and needs.

RESULTS: 68 clinical ophthalmologists participated. There was a high degree of agreement (90%) that the pandemic has delayed ophthalmological follow-up visits and diagnosis. The participants agreed that the frequency of patients with dry eye disease (75%), stye/chalazion (62%) and blepharitis (60%) has increased. According to 28%, remote monitoring of pathologies such as dry eye, glaucoma, diabetes, conjunctivitis, hyposphagmas, styes, etc., will be common, especially in the young population. This will be especially relevant in chronic or mild pathologies of the ocular surface, and in the follow-up of patients after cataract and diabetic retinopathy interventions.

CONCLUSIONS: During the pandemic, an increase in the incidence of certain ocular surface diseases has been perceived. The telematic follow-up of chronic or mild pathologies of the ocular surface entails the need to provide specific training for both the patient and the healthcare professional, in addition to screening and referral protocols that would optimize the flow of care.

PMID:36713825 | PMC:PMC9870759 | DOI:10.1016/j.oftal.2023.01.004

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