The Glaucoma Patient Support Group was set up in 2010 with the team from the Royle Eye Department at Pilgrim Hospital, Boston, offering the opportunity for patients to meet other patients and their families, listen to interesting speakers and ask questions to clinicians from the hospital team.
To date, the group has been able to support 360 people and continues to meet three times a year.
Julia Needle (74), from Sutterton, joined the group after being diagnosed with acute closed angle glaucoma in 2012.
While there are different types of glaucoma, acute closed angle glaucoma is caused by the drainage in the eye becoming blocked and can raise the pressure inside the eye very quickly, requiring urgent treatment.
Julia said: “I didn’t know this was a condition and that it could make me blind. I learnt so much from the group, they really helped me to understand what glaucoma was.”
After receiving initial treatment in hospital following her diagnosis, Julia meticulously used prescribed eye drops for seven years. She has since been maintaining her condition at home, with regular check-ups at the hospital.
Julia added: “I found out about the group through the hospital after I had been diagnosed and I have been going ever since. Although I am now maintaining my condition, I still find that I learn things at the group because there are different agenda items each time. If you want to ask questions, there are always staff there who are happy to help.”
Ophthalmology Consultant Mohit Gupta, from United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust, said: “We’re really proud to be able to bring people together to talk about glaucoma and share their experiences in a welcoming and relaxed environment.”
The next group meeting will take place on Friday 2 February 2024 in the Lecture Hall at the Medical Education Centre, Pilgrim Hospital Boston.
Those who wish to attend are welcome to join for tea and coffee at 1.30pm for a 2pm start.