Prevalence of POAG in Japan Dwarfed by Other Markets

21st December 2017 (Last Updated December 21st, 2017 14:52)

The total prevalence of primary open-angle glaucoma (POAG) is substantially lower in Japan when compared with other markets. In most of the seven major markets (7MM: US, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, UK, and Japan), the age-standardized prevalence of POAG is at least 1.29% in men 40 years and older and 1.39% in women 40 years and older. However, the age-standardized prevalence of POAG in this age group in Japan is 0.27% in men and 0.15% in women. Figure 1 shows the age-standardized total prevalence of POAG in men and women ages 40 years and older in the 7MM in 2016.

Glaucoma is a group of relatively common eye diseases that cause damage to the optic nerve, resulting in progressive, irreversible vision loss. Glaucoma is one of the leading causes of blindness worldwide, particularly in the elderly population. Glaucoma is generally categorized as open-angle glaucoma (OAG) or angle-closure glaucoma (ACG). OAG and ACG can be classified as primary or secondary glaucoma, depending on the cause. However, there are several other types of glaucoma, such as normal-tension glaucoma (NTG).

In a population-based prevalence study in Tajimi City, Japan, most of the patients with optic disc appearance indicative of glaucoma had intraocular pressure below 21mmHg. Therefore, most of these patients are classified as NTG rather than POAG. As a result of its low prevalence of POAG, Japan had the fewest number of total prevalent POAG cases among the 7MM in 2016. This was true across all age groups.

While Japan has a much lower prevalence of POAG than other markets, the prevalence of primary ACG and other subtypes in Japan is similar to that in other markets. For a more detailed breakdown of the epidemiology of glaucoma in the 7MM, please see the Glaucoma EpiCast Report and Glaucoma EpiCast Model in GlobalData’s Report Store.