• Diaton;
  • Goldmann applanation tonometry;
  • intraocular pressure


Background:  To assess agreement between the Diaton, a new transpalpebral tonometer, and Goldmann applanation tonometry, the accepted gold standard.

Design:  Comparative study of two devices in a hospital setting.

Participants:  Two hundred and fifty-one patients attending the eye casualty and general ophthalmology clinics at St James' University Hospital, Leeds between February and December 2009.

Methods:  Intraocular pressure was measured using Goldmann applanation tonometry and Diaton tonometry by one examining ophthalmologist. Patient preference for either technique was also recorded.

Main Outcome Measures:  Intraocular pressure measured by Diaton was compared with intraocular pressure measured by Goldmann applanation tonometry. Limits of agreement were determined using the Bland-Altman method.

Results:  Two hundred and fifty right eyes underwent both Goldmann applanation tonometry and Diaton tonometry. Mean intraocular pressure was 13.8 ± 3.6 mmHg using Goldmann applanation tonometry and 13.2 ± 4.3 mmHg using Diaton tonometry. Upper and lower limits of agreement were +8.4 mmHg and −9.6 mmHg, respectively. Order of intraocular pressure measurement and positioning did not influence limits of agreement in a clinically significant manner. Overall, more patients expressed preference for Diaton tonometry (40.2%) than Goldmann applanation tonometry (30.3%). Those aged 50 or less were more likely to prefer Diaton tonometry.

Conclusions:  The Diaton tonometer is portable, lightweight, user-friendly and well tolerated by patients. However, it shows poor agreement with Goldmann applanation tonometry, thereby precluding it from being regarded as a substitute in routine clinical practice.