Glaucoma, known as a sneak thief of eyesight, is one of the most sight threatening condition of the eye. It usually occurs among the people above 40 years of age especially who have family history of glaucoma. It is caused due to excess build-up of fluid inside the eye, which in normal case, is drained in blood stream. The fluid exerts pressure on vital parts of the eye like optic nerve and causes irreversible damage. Initially, field of vision is affected.
Glaucoma is one of the leading causes of blindness for people over the age of 60. It can occur at any age but is more common in older adults. Many forms of glaucoma have no warning signs. The effect is so gradual that one may not notice a change in vision until the condition is at an advanced stage.
Because vision loss due to glaucoma can’t be recovered, it’s important to have regular eye exams that include measurements of eye pressure so a diagnosis can be made in its early stages and treated appropriately. If glaucoma is recognized early, vision loss can be slowed or prevented. If you have the condition, you’ll generally need treatment for the rest of your life.
- Patchy blind spots in side (peripheral) or central vision, frequently in both eyes
- Tunnel vision in the advanced stages
Acute angle-closure glaucoma
- Severe headache
- Eye pain
- Nausea and vomiting
- Blurred vision
- Halos around lights
- Eye redness
If left untreated, glaucoma will eventually cause blindness. Even with treatment, about 15 percent of people with glaucoma become blind in at least one eye within 20 years.
These self-care steps can help detect glaucoma in its early stages, which is important in preventing vision loss or slowing its progress.
- Get regular dilated eye examinations.Regular comprehensive eye exams can help detect glaucoma in its early stages, before significant damage occurs. As a general rule, it is recommended to have a comprehensive eye exam as under:
- 10 to 40 years: Every five to 10 years
- 40 to 54 years: Every two to four years
- 55 to 64 years: every one to three years
- Over 65 years: Every one to two years
- Glaucoma at-risk cases: More frequent screening may be needed as advised by the treating Doctor.
- Know your family’s eye health history. Glaucoma tends to run in families. More frequent screening may be necessary if anyone in the family has Glaucoma
- Exercise safely. Regular, moderate exercise may help prevent glaucoma by reducing eye pressure. Talk with your doctor about an appropriate exercise program.
- Take prescribed eyedrops regularly. Glaucoma eyedrops can significantly reduce the risk that high eye pressure will progress to glaucoma. To be effective, eyedrops prescribed by the doctor need to be used regularly even if you have no symptoms.
- Wear eye protection. Serious eye injuries can lead to glaucoma. Wear eye protection when using power tools or playing high-speed racket sports in enclosed courts.
The damage caused by glaucoma can’t be reversed. But treatment and regular checkups can help slow or prevent vision loss, especially if the disease is detected in its early stages.
Glaucoma is treated by lowering the eye pressure (intraocular pressure). Treatment options may include prescription eyedrops, oral medications, laser treatment, surgery or a combination of any of these
At Sankara, facilities are available for the full range of detection and treatment of Glaucoma