What is glaucoma?
Glaucoma occurs when pressure in the eye becomes elevated. In normal function, fluid drains through a mesh-like organ in the front of the eye, and is constantly replaced by new fluid. With glaucoma, the fluid does not drain properly and pressure builds up, pushing against the optic nerve, often damaging it. Reduced vision is typically the result. Left untreated, glaucoma can lead to irreversible blindness.
What causes glaucoma?
While anyone can develop glaucoma, some significant risk factors are:
- Family history
- Nearsightedness or farsightedness
- Age (over 45 years).
- Those with black ancestry are also at elevated risk.
What are the symptoms?
Initially, glaucoma symptoms are subtle, and they often go unnoticed. For this reason, glaucoma is sometimes called “The Silent Thief of Sight.” When symptoms do appear signaling the onset of glaucoma, they may include:
- Eye pain
- Difficulty adjusting to the dark
- Deteriorating peripheral vision
Often, your family eye doctor can detect glaucoma through a routine pressure check.
How is glaucoma treated?
Individual treatments will vary from person to person. Treatments include medications (eye drops and/or pills), standard surgery, and laser surgery (Selective Laser Trabeculoplasty, Micropulse Laser Trabeculoplasty, and Endoscopic CycloPhotocoagulation). Several of our ophthalmologists now also perform minimally invasive glaucoma surgery (MIGS) to treat glaucoma, depending on the severity of the disease. For advanced cases, Dr. Christopher Knight offers glaucoma filtration surgery at our Warsaw facility.
To aid in the diagnosis of glaucoma, Grossnickle Eye Center utilizes Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT), visual field testing, and ophthalmic photography to provide an accurate evaluation of the eye.