Glaucoma is a serious eye disease that can lead to permanent blindness. It happens when the pressure inside your eye gets too high and damages your optic nerve. It is important to get your eyes checked regularly to be screened for glaucoma as it can often start without symptoms. The doctors at Cohen Eye Institute are well equipped to detect, manage and treat glaucoma should it be needed for your eyes.
The main cause of glaucoma is high pressure inside your eye, which is also called intraocular pressure. Your eye produces a clear fluid called aqueous humor, which fills the front part of your eye and provides nourishment to your cornea and lens. This fluid also maintains the pressure inside your eye. When this fluid doesn’t drain properly, or when too much of it is produced, the pressure inside your eye increases, causing damage to your optic nerve.
There are two main types of glaucoma: open-angle glaucoma (OAG) and angle-closure glaucoma (ACG). OAG is the most common type, and it happens when the drainage canals in your eye become clogged over time, leading to an increase in intraocular pressure. ACG, on the other hand, happens when the iris, which is the colored part of your eye, is too close to the drainage canals, blocking the flow of aqueous humor and causing a sudden increase in intraocular pressure.
In addition to high intraocular pressure, other risk factors for glaucoma include age, family history, ethnicity, certain medication use such as corticosteroids, and certain medical conditions such as diabetes and high blood pressure.
Yes, glaucoma is a severe condition that can lead to permanent blindness if left untreated. It’s the second leading cause of blindness worldwide, after cataracts. However, with early detection and treatment, the progression of the disease can be slowed or stopped, and further vision loss can be prevented.
It’s important to note that not all types of glaucoma are the same, and the severity of the disease can vary depending on the individual case.
Unfortunately, there’s no cure for glaucoma, and any vision loss that happens due to glaucoma is irreversible. However, early detection and treatment can help slow or stop the progression of the disease and prevent further vision loss.
Treatment options for glaucoma include medication, laser therapy, and surgery. Eye drops are the most common form of medication used to treat glaucoma. They work by either reducing the production of aqueous humor or increasing its drainage. Laser therapy, such as selective laser trabeculoplasty (SLT), is a non-invasive treatment option that can help reduce intraocular pressure by improving the drainage of aqueous humor. Dr. Cohen has performed thousands of successful SLT and glaucoma surgeries procedures to aid patients with glaucoma.
In the early stages, glaucoma often has no symptoms, and you may not notice any changes in your vision. That’s why it’s essential to get regular eye exams, especially if you have risk factors for glaucoma. The doctors at Cohen Eye Institute regularly treat patients for glaucoma and are very comfortable in it’s management.
As glaucoma progresses to advanced stages, there are some signs and symptoms to look out for, including:
If you experience any of these symptoms, it’s important to see an eye doctor as soon as possible for a comprehensive eye exam. Early detection and treatment can help prevent further vision loss. Schedule your appointment today if you or someone you love needs a glaucoma exam.