Glaucoma is the result of the eye’s drainage passage being blocked or not functioning properly. The clear fluids build up and eventually cause the intraocular pressure to rise. Over time, this pressure damages the optic nerve resulting in peripheral vision loss and finally the loss of central vision. Even if the intraocular pressure is below average, the optic nerve could still be damaged.
There are no early symptoms of the most common kinds of glaucoma. And unfortunately, once a patient loses vision due to glaucoma, it is usually too late. Early glaucoma treatment can help to control most of the problems with glaucoma.
Glaucoma can affect individuals of any race and any age. Risk factors increase with the following:
- Increased age
- African American heritage
- High blood pressure
- Family history
- Extreme nearsightedness
- Long-term steroid treatment
- Injury or trauma to the eye
Check for glaucoma during annual eye examinations. While there is no cure for glaucoma, there are treatments that can control it.
Our recommended glaucoma treatments come in pill form or as an eye drop (most patients use the drops). Medications on the market today have few side effects and prevent blindness.
Patients need to see the eye doctor for pressure checks every three to six months, depending on how severe the glaucoma is and how the pressure is responding to glaucoma treatment. When medication and/or laser surgery do not control the intraocular pressure, filtration surgery is utilized by our ophthalmologists. This glaucoma treatment creates a new drainage channel that allows the aqueous humor to drain from the eye.