Take a Proactive Approach to Preventing Vision Loss

Glaucoma is a disease that develops when the optic nerve sustains gradual, cumulative damage. Over 3 million Americans have glaucoma, but only half of those know they have it. Early intervention is key to preventing permanent vision loss from this disease.

Some patients have a higher chance of developing glaucoma, including people:

  • With a family history of glaucoma
  • Who are over the age of 40
  • Who have myopic or hyperopic eyes
  • Have thin corneas
  • Have diabetes
  • Have high or low blood pressure
  • Experience migraines

Medical Optometry America can help prevent permanent vision loss through early detection and management of glaucoma. By scheduling regular eye exams with your Medical Optometry America practice, you can help protect your vision and ocular health for years to come.

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Main Types of Glaucoma

There is a chamber between your iris and your lens called the anterior chamber. Through this chamber flows a fluid called the aqueous humor. If the aqueous humor does not drain properly from the anterior chamber, your intraocular pressure rises, which can eventually damage your optic nerve.

In open-angle glaucoma, there is enough space between the iris and the lens to allow drainage, but the drainage ducts do not allow the aqueous humor to flow correctly.

In cases of angle-closure glaucoma, the eye’s drainage ducts function properly but the space between the iris and the lens suddenly closes, filling with aqueous humor. This type of glaucoma typically occurs in individuals who are hyperopic, since their eyes have a comparatively narrow space or “angle” between the iris and lens.

Angle-closure glaucoma can come on very quickly and is often accompanied by nausea, significant eye pain, excessive tears, and headache. Angle-closure glaucoma is a medical emergency. If you experience these symptoms, contact a medical professional immediately.

Normal-Tension Glaucoma

Glaucoma is often associated with high intraocular pressure; however, that is not always the cause. Normal-tension glaucoma occurs when the drainage ducts work correctly and the space between the iris and the lens is wide enough to facilitate outflow, but the optic nerve still sustains damage. Medical scientists do not yet know why this happens.

How is Glaucoma Detected?

Medical Optometry America uses advanced diagnostic testing to detect glaucoma, often before you even notice vision loss.

Testing intraocular pressure is essential for assessing glaucoma risk, but it is only a small part of a comprehensive glaucoma examination. Other tests also play a vital role in the eventual diagnosis and management of this complex disease, such as:

Medical Optometry America clinicians have the latest technologies and expertise to provide comprehensive glaucoma care. Our approach can lead to early diagnosis and management, decreasing your risk of vision loss.

“The old saying that glaucoma is the silent thief of sight does not have to ring true anymore. Through technology and modern techniques, optometrists can detect glaucoma earlier than ever before, preserving more of your vision. However, glaucoma does not always exhibit symptoms, especially in its early stages, so even if you have perfect vision, trouble may be afoot. ”

Symptoms of Glaucoma

Glaucoma is often called “the silent thief of sight” for the way it can develop slowly and without symptoms. By the time patients realize their vision is changing, they have often already lost a significant portion of their eyesight. As such, it is vital to have your eyes examined by an Medical Optometry America doctor frequently.

Unlike many other types of glaucoma, acute angle-closure glaucoma does usually produce noticeable and severe symptoms, which may include:

  • Headaches
  • Severe eye pain
  • Excessive tears
  • Glare or halos around lights
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting

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