Glaucoma: Treatment, Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis
Glaucoma is a common eye disease, which can unfortunately lead to permanent vision loss when the treatments are delayed. It is important to learn about this eye condition to identify potential signs and implement an effective treatment plan when needed. Regular appointments with an experienced eye doctor are key to early diagnosis so that you can slow the progress of this eye disease.
Glaucoma Causes: What You Need to Know
When a person has glaucoma, the pressure is building the eye, and it eventually causes damage to the optic nerve. Since the optic nerve is a critical part of vision, the increasing pressure in the eye can eventually lead to partial or even full vision loss. Once the optic nerve has been damaged, there is no way to reverse the damage to restore vision.
Eye care professionals don’t have a clear picture of the exact reasons why pressure builds in the eye. But it has been found that certain risk factors increase the likelihood of developing this eye disease:
• Family history of glaucoma
• Over the age of 40
• Other health problems, such as diabetes
If the above risk factors apply to you, then it is essential that you maintain regular eye exams with your optometrist. Even though the initial signs of the disease don’t cause pain or discomfort for the patient, certain factors can be identified in the eye exam for early diagnosis.
Glaucoma symptoms might include:
• Blind spots in peripheral vision
• Blurred vision
• Eye pain
Since this eye disease is irreversible, it is one of the leading causes of blindness. Unfortunately, glaucoma symptoms aren’t often noticed until it is too late, which is why this eye disease is often known as the “silent thief of sight.”
Treatment Options for Glaucoma
When a glaucoma diagnosis is identified, the most important thing you can do is partner with your eye care provider to design the best treatment plan for your needs. Even though the eye condition can’t be reversed, early diagnosis and immediate treatment can slow the vision loss.
Here are some of the most common glaucoma treatment options:
• Medicated Eye Drops: These drops can lower eye pressure by reducing the amount of fluid in the eye. The medication either increases the outflow of fluid from the eye or reduces the formation of fluid.
• Laser Surgery: Several types of laser eye surgery can be helpful for glaucoma patients to increase the flow of fluid out of the eye (and decrease pressure at the same time). The goal is to stop the blockage of fluid for patients with open-angle glaucoma.
• Trabeculectomy: This surgery involves creating a small channel for the eye fluid to drain. While this surgery can be an effective treatment in some cases, there are situations where the surgery fails, and it needs to be redone.
Talk to Your Eye Doctor About Glaucoma
Even though there isn’t a way to prevent glaucoma, regular eye exams offer an effective option for early diagnosis. If your eye doctor discovers increased pressure in the eye, then glaucoma treatments can be implemented to slow the progression of the disease and protect your optic nerve. For more information about treatments for glaucoma and other eye diseases, talk to our experienced team. We’re here to help with your eye health!
Call our office today +1 773-360-8900 to learn more about your options.