Glaucoma is a group of eye diseases that cause the pressure in the eye to build up, leading to permanent vision loss and sometimes blindness. Below we sort fact from fiction.
MYTH 1: Glaucoma is a single disease
Glaucoma is a group of eye diseases; the most common ones are open-angle glaucoma (OAG) and angle-closure glaucoma (ACG).
In open-angle glaucoma, the drainage structure in your eye is open but there is still resistance to the outflow of fluid. As a result, the fluid inside the eye does not drain correctly. This, in turn, causes an increase in intraocular pressure (IOP) that damages the optic nerve. OAG develops slowly and without obvious symptoms or pain, so by the time people notice symptoms, such as peripheral vision loss, their optic nerve has already sustained damage.
Angle-closure glaucoma occurs when the drainage flow is blocked and the eye can’t drain fluid as it should. The most common cause of ACG is a narrowing of the drainage channel between your cornea and iris, causing an increase in eye pressure. This pressure damages the optic nerve, leading to vision loss. ACG can occur gradually or suddenly. Symptoms include eye pain, nausea and vomiting, a severe headache, and seeing halos around lights.
MYTH 2: Once you have glaucoma nothing can be done
While there's currently no cure for glaucoma, there are many successful treatment options. Eye drops, oral medications, as well as surgical and laser procedures can help slow the progression of glaucoma. Each treatment option is used to reduce pressure inside the eye by improving the fluid flow out of the eye.
MYTH 3: With glaucoma, vision loss is inevitable
While glaucoma can’t be prevented, it’s possible to prevent significant vision loss or blindness.
How? By undergoing regular comprehensive eye exams. As soon as your eye doctor detects you have glaucoma, the sooner you can start treatment. That’s why routine eye exams which include glaucoma testing are so important.
Early detection is key in preventing or slowing ocular damage. Contact EYEcenter Optometric in , Gold River, Rocklin, Folsom and Sacramento to book your comprehensive eye exam today!
At EYEcenter Optometric, we put your family's needs first. Talk to us about how we can help you maintain healthy vision. Call us today: 916-727-6518 or book an appointment online to see one of our Citrus Heights eye doctors.
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