As part of its efforts to raise public awareness of glaucoma, Santen Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. (hereinafter “Santen”), based in Osaka, will sponsor glaucoma awareness-raising activities to be conducted around the world during the World Glaucoma Week, from Sunday, March 10, to Saturday, March 16, 2019.
Glaucoma is an eye disease that causes damage to the optic nerve, resulting in progressive visual field loss. Although this disease can lead to loss of vision when left untreated, early treatment often allows patients to maintain visual field throughout their lifetime. Therefore, early detection through regular ophthalmic consultation is the desirable starting point when treating glaucoma. The World Glaucoma Association, of which Santen is an Associate Glaucoma Industry Member, defines one week every March as the World Glaucoma Week and hosts various events and awareness-raising activities around the world to encourage people to detect and begin treating glaucoma as early as possible.
Santen has also implemented various initiatives to increase public awareness of the importance of early detection and continued treatment of glaucoma. As part of such initiatives, Santen hosted the disease awareness-raising event “Recommendations for Continued Treatment and Care” targeting glaucoma patients in Nagoya, Aichi Prefecture, central Japan, on November 17, 2018. This event included a makeup lesson given by facial therapist Ms. Reiko Kazki (hereafter “Ms. Kazki”), a pioneer in rehabilitation makeup*, and a lecture by glaucoma specialist Dr. Aiko Iwase (Director of Tajimi Iwase Eye Clinic, hereafter “Dr. Iwase”).
Although many types of eye drops are available for treating glaucoma, they can sometimes bring about adverse effects, such as hyperpigmentation (abnormal coloring) around the eyes and deepening of the upper eyelid sulcus (sunken eyes).
An important challenge of glaucoma treatment is that some patients hesitate to receive continued treatment out of concern about such side effects or stop using eye drops based on their own judgment. This event was held to provide such patients with the opportunity to overcome their feelings about the adverse effects and increase their awareness of the importance of continued treatment.
At the event venue, Ms. Kazki’s demonstration of rehabilitation makeup* aimed at making the adverse effects of eye drops for glaucoma inconspicuous met with cries of surprise from both female and male audience members. Ms. Kazki also gave a hands-on makeup lesson to some in the audience. Dr. Iwase explained in her lecture, “Continued glaucoma treatment allows patients to maintain vision field. Drug side effects sometimes inevitably accompany glaucoma treatment, and discourage some patients to continue receiving treatment. My strong desire to change this situation motivated me to participate in this event.”
Santen also continues to regard the World Glaucoma Week as a period for employees to learn about glaucoma on their own initiative and impart their learning to their loved ones, including family members and friends. The company will devote further efforts to encouraging all employees, including those working around the world, to deepen their understanding about glaucoma.
* Rehabilitation makeup: Makeup for nullifying a defect or helping return to the original condition