Glaucoma is the second leading cause of blindness. Sometimes called the silent thief of sight, glaucoma can damage your vision so gradually you don't notice any loss of vision until the disease is at an advanced stage. Glaucoma is an eye condition that develops when too much fluid pressure builds up inside of the eye. This increase in pressure, called intraocular pressure, can damage the optic nerve, which transmits images to the brain. If damage to the optic nerve from high eye pressure continues, glaucoma will cause loss of vision. Without treatment, glaucoma can cause total permanent blindness within a few years. Because most people with glaucoma have no early symptoms or pain from this increased pressure, it is important to have regular routine eye exams so that glaucoma can be diagnosed and treated before long-term visual loss occurs.
There are two basic types of glaucoma:
Open angle glaucoma and angle-closure glaucoma
Open-angle glaucoma is the most common type of glaucoma. Slowly, damage to the optic nerve can result in loss of the peripheral vision. High ocular pressure is a common feature of open-angle glaucoma. Because this form of glaucoma is typically gradual and painless, patients will not be aware of a problem. Lowering eye pressure can slow or halt visual loss.
Angle-closure glaucoma, or the risk of this affects less than ten percent of glaucoma patients. Pain, redness and blurred vision may occur suddenly in one or both eyes. Vision can be preserved with prompt, effective treatment. The treatment for angle-closure glaucoma, or narrow-angle glaucoma, is generally initiated with a laser to open the drainage channels of the eye.
Our doctors employ current technology for detection and treatment of glaucoma.
In addition to measuring the intraocular pressure, we employ the latest OCT and visual field testing to detect and follow the condition.
Optical coherence tomography (OCT) is a painless and quick method of optical signal acquisition and processing used to examine the structure of the optic nerve.
Visual field test is an examination that may be performed to analyze the function of the visual pathway.
If glaucoma needs to be treated, you will be instructed on how to instill eye drops as necessary. In addition, laser therapy is often employed if additional control is necessary. There are other surgical procedures that can be used when drops or lasers are not sufficient.