Glaucoma – A Brief Overview

Although there are many debilitating diseases that can complicate an individual’s ability to lead a healthy and productive life, glaucoma can be a particularly difficult condition to grapple with. In short, glaucoma is a disease marked by increased pressure within one’s eyeball. The condition results in a gradual loss of one’s vision and can thus negatively impact the life of the sufferer. Unfortunately, glaucoma is the leading factor precipitating blindness in the world. It is also the second leading cause of blindness in America. By learning more about glaucoma, individuals can arm themselves with the information necessary to engage in preventive measures while also attaining the data necessary to treat the condition.


Glaucoma Basics

As stated earlier, glaucoma is an eye disease that results in a gradual loss of vision. In addition to this, glaucoma can lead to blindness. Unfortunately, the condition has few symptoms and few warning signs. However, one clear sign that may indicate the presence of glaucoma is the individual’s loss of peripheral vision. Because glaucoma typically has few or no symptoms, it is important for individuals to have regular eye exams for detection purposes.


Types of Glaucoma

There are two basic kinds of glaucoma, as well as several unique types of the condition within each category. For example, glaucoma and cataracts are frequently referred to as the same condition. Nevertheless, the two illnesses are distinct and unrelated to one another.


Primary Open-Angle Glaucoma

The first kind of glaucoma is referred to as POAG, or primary open-angle glaucoma. POAG transpires when an individual’s eye canal becomes blocked, thus entailing an increase of pressure in the eye as a result of a lack in drainage. This type of glaucoma affects more than three million people in the U.S. However, when the condition is detected early, treatment can be effective. But without completing regular eye exams, POAG can entail the gradual loss of vision. Unfortunately, the condition can be irreversible if it is diagnosed too late.





Angle Closure Glaucoma

The second kind of glaucoma is referred to as angle closure glaucoma (or acute glaucoma). This form of the condition is less common than POAG and is different in that the pressure within the eye develops faster. With angle closure glaucoma, the cornea and iris of the eye do not open as fully as they are supposed to. Generally, treatment for angle closure glaucoma will involve a surgery that trims the iris’s outer edges. Symptoms of angle closure glaucoma can include nausea, headaches, and blurred vision.


Other Types of Glaucoma

Several other types of glaucoma exist, and they include normal tension, pigmentary, secondary, neovascular, and traumatic. Individuals interested in learning more about glaucoma should also note that the disease can be hereditary, especially for people who are of Japanese descent of have a family history of the condition. Other people at risk of glaucoma include individuals who have endured an eye injury or have heart problems.


Treatment for Glaucoma

Individuals who want to optimize eye health should place primacy upon prevention. Yet glaucoma treatment is available for individuals who have been diagnosed with the condition. Treatments for the condition include surgery, medication, and eye drops. If you believe that you or a loved one have glaucoma, be sure to consult with a trained medical professional for diagnosis and treatment.


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