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Tag Archives: what is glaucoma

  • What is Glaucoma? - The in's and out's of this silent killer

    Our patients frequently ask about the prevention, treatment, and symptoms of glaucoma which is a natural response when hearing about the effects. People want top know what they can do to keep themselves safe. However, to understand the causes and effects of a disease first you need to know what it is.

    What is Glaucoma?

    There is a simple and a complicated answer for this, just like anything in life. So i'll do my best to simply break it down. Glaucoma actually refers to a category of eye disorders. (6 of them to be exact). In a nut shell, glaucoma is the dangerous buildup of internal pressure against the optic nerve, which when not treated can lead of irreversible damage and even sight loss. So no let's take a closer look into the specific types of glaucoma.

    Open Angle Glaucoma - 

    Open angle glaucoma is the most common form seen today. It occurs from the trabecular meshwork of the inner eye starting to breakdown and become less effective at draining fluid out. As this happens, your intraocular pressure rises and slowly starts to damage the optic nerve.

    Like most types of glaucoma, there are no signs in the early stages. Once you start to notice black spots in your visual field, it is most likely too late.

     

    Normal Tension Glaucoma - 

    Normal tension glaucoma is essentially the same as open angle, however it doesn't have to do with higher pressure in the eye. In fact, some people who suffer from normal tension glaucoma actually have low eye pressure rates. The cause for this is fairly unknown. Most doctors speculate that it has to do with blood flow to the eye, because people with vascular diseases have a high rate of getting it.

    Angle Closure Glaucoma (closed angle glaucoma, narrow angle glaucoma) - 

    Another type of glaucoma, (with three different names) which is rare, especially when compared to the other types is angle closure glaucoma. This occurs as a result of the drainage angle of the eye being blocked off. Eye pressure can rise very fast, and cause damage quickly. Some symptoms of this are severe eye or brow pain, red and blurry eyes, seeing "halo's" around light, headache, nausea, vomiting, and other minor symptoms. Because of the quick nature of this, it needs to be dealt with asap. If you think you are having an "attack" seek medical attention immediately, especially if you are at high risks for glaucoma (hereditary, etc.)

    Congenital Glaucoma - 

    Congenital Glaucoma affects newborns and toddlers, as 85% of the cases are diagnosed before 16 months. It is a result of narrow angles in the eyes causes blocks and pressure build ups. This is extremely hard to determine because obviously children that young have no idea what is going on to them. If you notice any type of cloudy, white, mixture in the eye or any type of protruding, take them to the emergency room asap.

    Secondary Glaucoma - 

    Secondary Glaucoma is a result of another action. Frequent cases of this come from freak accidents and high intensity "ball" sports such as tennis or racquetball. Being hit in the eye or the area around it can damage nerves, create unwanted pressure and lead to this type of glaucoma.

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