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GlaucomaGet rid of darkness

  • Glaucoma there is a continuous balance between fresh production of liquid [aquous humor] and its drainage .When fluid is not drained out properly or fluid is produced too much then intra ocular pressure is raised .This harms the health of the eye. This causes ganglion cell and nerve fiber damage resulting into many signs of optic neuropathy.

    It is a silent killer of sight. Without any pain, headache, difficulty in near and distance vision (contrary to common belief)
    Type of glaucoma :
    - Congenital
    - Developmental

    1. Angle Closure

    2. Open Angle

    1. Primary open-angle or chronic glaucoma: most common form of glaucoma, it damages the vision gradually without any pain, headache, difficulty in near and distance vision (contrary to common belief) . Affected person does not know about this seriously damaging but silent disease. It is detected only by routine check up by an eye specialist .In most of the cases by the time of detection, eye is at end stage.
    2. Closed angle or acute glaucoma: In this type of glaucoma, the intraocular pressure increases abruptly due to a sudden and severe blockage of fluid drainage within the eye. This type of glaucoma is associated with pain ,redness ,watering and decrease in vision. This needs quick treatmentl.
    3. Other types of glaucoma are Pigmentary glaucoma and Secondary glaucoma.

    All types of glaucoma have three common features, these are:

    . Increased intraocular pressure: It is measured with Schiotz tonometer, Goldmann Applantion Tonometer or computerized automated non contact tonometer .
    . Cupping of optic disk or atrophy of the Optic Nerve: This is the drying up of the optic nerve due to high pressure in the eye. This is assessed by fundus examination of the eyes.
    . Visual Field Defects: It results in and because of presence of partly or fully nonseeing areas in the field of sight. This is assessed and recorded by mannual or computerized field charting.

    Which are the high-risk groups who can get glaucoma?

    - Everybody over forty years of age should be examined regularly to rule out glaucoma.

    . People having high refractive error.
    . People suffering from diabetes.
    . People belonging to families with a history of glaucoma.
    . People with any injury to the eye.
    . People with a history of prolonged use of steroid eye drops.

    Treatment for glaucoma Unfortunately glaucoma can neither be prevented nor treated. But it can be controlled and further damage to the optic nerve can be slowed down or halted. This control can only be sustained through very disciplined and regular treatment as advised by the ophthalmologist. It is life long process. Even after surgery regular eye check up is necessary. In early stage one or two eye drops are sufficient. In later stages number, frequency and concentration of eye drops increases . Generally the surgery is done early if glaucoma is not controlled properly with few and less toxic medications or patient is not taking medications due to poverty or carelessness. An emergency operation called as laser iridotomy may be required for the treatment of acute glaucoma. This creates a drainage hole in the iris to relieve the pressure build up. This technique can be performed by laser surgery without making an incision in the eye. Sometimes a surgery called Trabeculectomy is performed to control intra ocular pressure in which a new drainage channel or passage is formed for the fluid to exit, thus lowering the pressure in the eye. facts about Glaucoma.

    Immediately get in touch with an eye specialist, if you experience any of the following:

    - Poor night vision

    . Persistent redness of the eye
    . If you are over forty, go for regular tonometry (a check of the intra ocular pressure) by mannual or automated non contact.
    . There is no preventive measures for glaucoma.
    . Only in few cases and end stage glaucoma pain or vision loss is experienced by the patient.
    . Timely treatment of glaucoma may prevent further loss of vision and blindness.