Exposure to cockroaches and cats may increase the risk for glaucoma, new research shows.
People with glaucoma had significantly higher levels of immunoglobulin E, a type of allergic antibody, compared to people without glaucoma. The tests showed that it is specifically cockroach and cat allergens that increased the probability of glaucoma—there was no increase of risk with dog allergens. These findings raise the possibility that the immune system plays a role in glaucoma. The study was published in the American Journal of Ophthalmology.