Glaucoma

Glaucoma is a condition which causes damage to the optic nerve. This is usually due to raised pressure in the eye and results in reduced peripheral vision. Glaucoma affects around 2% of the population over the age of 40 with risks of developing the condition being higher in people of African-Caribbean origin or those people with diabetes. Glaucoma can occur in young adults and children but is relatively uncommon.

There are 4 main types of Glaucoma:

  • Chronic (slow onset) Glaucoma is the most common form of Glaucoma and occurs when either too much fluid is produced or the drainage system inside the eye slowly becomes ‘blocked’. This results in increased pressure in the eye occurring over several months.
  • Acute (sudden onset) Glaucoma is where there is a sudden blockage of the drainage system in the eye. This results in very high pressures and results in severe red and painful eye requiring immediate treatment. Permanent damage to the eye can result if treatment is not sought immediately.
  • Secondary Glaucoma can be caused by another disease, typically diabetes, affecting eye pressure.


Treatment of Glaucoma

If detected early glaucoma can usually be treated with eye drops. These drops act by either reducing the amount of fluid your eye produces or by opening up the drainage channels to more efficiently drain the fluid away. In most cases these drops, used daily, reduce and stabilize the pressure in the eye preventing any further damage and sight loss

‘At risk groups’

  • Those over the age of 40
  • Those with immediate family (brothers, sisters, parents) with glaucoma
  • Diabetics
  • People who are very short-sighted
  • People of African origin

In most cases glaucoma has no outward symptoms (see slow onset glaucoma) so it is vitally important that everyone, especially those in the ‘at risk’ groups, have regular eye tests

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John Smith
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26/06/2015 - 10.00am
Eye Test
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