Since this month has been designated National Glaucoma Awareness Month, in this article we would like to review the importance of being aware of the indications of this vision threatening disease. Glaucoma is a category of progressive ocular disorders that damage the optic nerve, which can lead to a permanent loss of vision. If not treated, glaucoma often first results in peripheral vision loss and ultimately ends up causing a complete loss of vision. Glaucoma is the number one cause of avoidable loss of vision and according to estimates, over sixty million people around the world have the disease.
The main source of glaucoma is thought to be elevated pressure in the eye referred to as intraocular pressure. As the pressure increases, this damages the optic nerve which transmits messages to the brain. In instances where this pathway doesn't work properly, vision is affected. At the current time, optic nerve damage can't be fixed.
Glaucoma is especially threatening because distinct from other causes of vision impairment, it is an asymptomatic condition until it may be too late.
It is due to this that glaucoma is known as the "sneak thief of sight." The problem is: how is it possible to detect a condition which is asymptomatic?
Early diagnosis of glaucoma is crucial to effective treatment. Although glaucoma risk is universal, specific groups have a higher risk than others. Serious risk factors for glaucoma may include adults over 45 years of age, those with family members who have had glaucoma, diabetes, or other eye conditions such as myopia, hyperopia, eye injuries or high intraocular pressure.
There are many different kinds of glaucoma such as open-angle or closed angle glaucomas. Both eyes are usually affected, however the disease has been known to progress more quickly in one of the eyes.
An effective way to detect glaucoma is to find a qualified optometrist. There are a number of diagnostic eye evaluations used to measure intraocular pressure and the risk of glaucoma. Particularly if you are 45 or older or have one of the other risk factors named above, you should book a comprehensive eye exam at least once a year.
The truth is that most forms of glaucoma cannot be prevented. Nevertheless the deterioration of sight can be prevented by early diagnosis and treatment. Don't delay! Contact Timothy P Kenkel and Associates today, for annual glaucoma screening.