Impact factors on intraocular pressure measurements in healthy subjects

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Aim:To evaluate whether intraocular pressure (IOP) calculation by applanation tonometry is determined more essentially by the subject’s neck position or by neck constriction.Methods:23 right eyes of 23 healthy subjects (12 male, 11 female) were included. IOP was measured by applanation tonometry with the TonoPen on sitting participants under four different conditions: with open collar upright (A) or with the head in the headrest of a slit lamp (B), with a tight necktie upright (C) or in slit lamp position (D). All measurements with neck constriction were performed 3 minutes after placing the necktie.Results:Mean IOP was 16.9 (SD 2.3) mm Hg (range 11–21 mm Hg) (A), 18.1 (SD 2.2) mm Hg (range 14–22 mm Hg) (B), 17.9 (SD 2.9) mm Hg (range 12–25 mm Hg) (C) and 18.7 (SD 2.7) mm Hg (range 13–24 mm Hg) (D). Mean IOP increased by 1.3 (SD 2.6) mm Hg (p = 0.028, paired t test, range +0.2 to +2.4 mm Hg) if subjects changed position from A to B. There was no statistically significant difference between measurements with or without neck constriction.Conclusion:Applanation tonometry may be inaccurate if performed in slit lamp position. In contrast, tight neckties do not significantly affect IOP evaluation in healthy subjects.

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