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If You Have Glaucoma, You Want To Read This

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Study Shows Certain Poses May Pose Greater Risks To Those With Glaucoma

January is Glaucoma Awareness Month so we wanted to share a recent study with you. 2.7 million people over the age of 40 suffer from Glaucoma. It’s projected that this number will grow to over 4 million by 2030. While practicing yoga does have wonderful health benefits, certain poses can prove riskier than others for those that are suffering from Glaucoma. In this article, a small study was done involving glaucoma patients and the results were telling.

Check out the article below to learn more

By Marie Ellis – Yoga is an ancient Indian practice that seeks to harmonize the body with the mind and breath through breathing techniques and physical postures. Though it has become a popular form of exercise in the Western world, a new study provides a point of caution, as its findings suggest certain poses increase eye pressure and present risks for individuals with glaucoma.
The downward dog position in yoga increases pressure on the eyes, presenting risks for glaucoma patients, according to the latest study.

Although yoga has been lauded for its health benefits – including improving symptoms of arthritis and benefitting men with prostate cancer – the researchers of this latest study investigated the potential risks the practice can present for glaucoma patients.

The team, led by Dr. Robert Ritch, from the New York Eye and Ear Infirmary of Mount Sinai (NYEE) in New York, NY, notes that glaucoma is the leading cause of irreversible blindness in the US.

They focus on elevated intraocular pressure (IOP), which is the most common risk factor for glaucomatous damage and the only modifiable factor that has been proven to prevent or slow glaucoma progression.

All four yoga poses increased eye pressure

The researchers say that previous studies have only tested the headstand position in yoga, which showed a two-fold rise in IOP.

As such, for their latest research, the team asked healthy participants without eye-related disease and glaucoma patients to complete a series of inverted yoga positions, which included downward dog, standing forward bend, plow and legs up on the wall.

At baseline seated, the researchers captured the IOP in each group, and then again while performing the pose, 2 minutes while holding the pose, just after the pose in a seated position and then again 10 minutes later in the seated position.

Results showed that both groups of study participants had a rise in IOP in all four yoga poses, but the greatest pressure increase was found during downward dog.

Study author Jessica Jasien, from NYEE, notes that although their results do not reveal a major difference in IOP between the normal participants and the glaucoma patients, the team believes that further studies with larger populations and longer durations of inversions should be carried out.

The small sample size of participants is a limitation of the study; the researchers say this limitation could explain the lack of statistically significant differences between the glaucoma and non-glaucoma groups.

Regarding this limitation, they add that the “absence of proof is not necessarily a proof of absence if the study sample is small.”

The team calls for future studies to assess whether certain yoga poses increase the risk of glaucoma progression.

For the full article from medicalnewstoday, click here.

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