Glaucoma: the Silent Thief of Sight
How Would You Describe Your Eyesight?
- It’s fine – no problems here!
- Severe eye pain
- Red eyes
- Large pupils
Guess What? All of These May be Signs of Glaucoma
Yes, even no symptoms at all.
Glaucoma is a group of eye diseases that can gradually destroy your peripheral vision without warning and usually without symptoms until you have nothing left but tunnel vision. After that, it is usually not long until all vision is lost. Loss of vision is caused by damage to the optic nerve. The optic nerve, exiting from the back of the eye, is actually a bundle of over a million nerve fibers and is responsible for carrying the images we see to the brain. When there is damage to the optic nerve, you’ll have damage to your vision.
A common cause of glaucoma in Colorado Springs is high intraocular pressure (IOP), but even people with normal levels of IOP can experience vision loss from glaucoma. If you have a family history of glaucoma you may be at greater risk of developing this disease.
Types of Glaucoma
- Open-angle glaucoma: The trabecular meshwork is a sponge-like tissue that normally allows fluids to escape from the eye. When this trabecular meshwork becomes blocked, fluid is trapped, leading to elevated eye pressure.
- Angle-closure glaucoma: Less common that open-angle and considered a medical emergency, this type causes sudden pressure to build up because the iris obstructs part of the angle of the eye (angle-closure), preventing fluid escape.
- Congenital glaucoma: Some infants are born with an eye angle that prevents fluid drainage.
- Secondary glaucoma: Increased eye pressure can develop as the result of an injury, disease or an eye surgery.
If it’s been a while since you had an eye exam, we encourage you to schedule one. Eye exams are the only way to know if you have glaucoma and undergo glaucoma treatment to preserve your vision. Sometimes glaucoma can be corrected at the same time as cataract surgery. Contact us today to schedule an eye exam in Colorado Springs.