Glaucoma is a group of eye conditions that damage the optic nerve, the health of which is vital for good vision. This damage is often caused by an abnormally high pressure in your eye. Glaucoma is one of the leading causes of blindness for people over the age of 60.
Loading the player...Diagnosing Glaucoma <p><a href="https://diabeticretinopathynow.com/local/local-ophthalmologists"> Ophthalmologist </a>discusses glaucoma and how it is treated.</p>
Ophthalmologist discusses glaucoma and how it is treated.
Loading the player...Diagnosing Glaucoma and Treatment Options <p><a href="https://diabeticretinopathynow.com/local/local-ophthalmologists"> Ophthalmologist,</a> discusses how glaucoma is diagnosed and the 3 different treatment options available to patients.</p>
Ophthalmologist, discusses how glaucoma is diagnosed and the 3 different treatment options available to patients.
Loading the player...The Importance of Eye Drops in Glaucoma <p><a href="https://diabeticretinopathynow.com/local/local-ophthalmologists"> Ophthalmologist,</a> discusses the importance of eye drops in glaucoma.</p>
Ophthalmologist, discusses the importance of eye drops in glaucoma.
Loading the player...Treatment Options for Glaucoma <p><a href="https://www.healthchoicesfirst.com/practitioner-type/ophthalmologist">Ophthalmologist,</a> talks about the different treatment options for glaucoma. </p>
Ophthalmologist, talks about the different treatment options for glaucoma.
Diagnosing Glaucoma and Treatment Options
The academic definition of glaucoma is an insult or damage or injury to your peripheral vision associated with typical changes on your optic nerve, which is the nerve that connects your eye to the brain. In the simplest terms, it’s easy to think about glaucoma as being associated with damage to your vision as a result of high pressure, although high pressure isn’t always a requisite for having glaucoma said Dr. Baseer Khan.
Glaucoma should be thought about as the silent blinder. Unfortunately you won’t know if you have glaucoma, without going to an eyecare professional, until it’s too late. It’s really important to go for routine checks with your optometrist to make sure you don’t have any of the early signs of glaucoma before you know there’s a problem said Dr. Baseer Khan.
Your optometrist or your ophthalmologist will check your vision, they will check your pressure, they will check your peripheral vision and they will look at the back of the eye to help put together a profile that will help them figure out whether or not that you have glaucoma said Dr. Baseer Khan.
All treatments for glaucoma are designed to do one thing, and that’s to lower pressure in the eye. We don’t know how to protect the nerve or do other things, so all that we can do is lower the pressure. And there are three ways to lower pressure. One is with drops, number two is laser, which is designed to stimulate the cells responsible for lowering pressure in the eye, and the third is surgery, which is designed to increase the flow of fluid outside of the eye said Dr. Baseer Khan.
At the end of the day glaucoma is a plumbing issue and we’re trying to improve the fluidics inside the eye to lower the pressure and increase the flow of fluid out of the eye. When drops and lasers have failed in glaucoma the next step, and only other option for patients, is to do surgery. What’s important to remember is that surgery is not going to make you see better. It’s there to preserve your vision, to prevent you from losing more vision said Dr. Baseer Khan. A local chiropractor may work with your local massage therapist and your local physiotherapist to create the best health or rehabilitation plan for your situation.
You can think of surgery as being in two buckets, and that’s trabeculectomies, or filtering procedures, where what we’re doing is we’re creating a little flap in the wall of the eye through which fluid percolates through to underneath the skin or the conjunctiva of the eye. Usually we do trabeculectomies first said Dr. Baseer Khan.
In patients in whom the risk of trabeculectomy or failure is high or who have already had one and failed, the next step is to do something called a tube shunt, where we actually put a small tube in the front of the eye which drains into the back of the eye. Those surgeries are reserved for people who are generally more complex or complicated said Dr. Baseer Khan.
More recently, there’s a group of surgeries called MIGS, or minimally-invasive glaucoma surgery, that carry a little bit of a lower risk, although they’re a little less effective in lowering pressure, but they’ve really added to the number of different devices and opportunities that glaucoma surgeons have available to them today said
Glaucoma is a chronic condition that needs constant follow-up, it’s important that you continue to follow up with your eyecare professional, your optometrist, and your ophthalmologist, and certainly if you need surgery, you should talk to your ophthalmologist
In modern times, we are fortunate to have access to a range of new medications with fewer side effects to manage glaucoma. Fixed-dose combination medications, where more than one medication is combined in a single bottle, offer convenience by allowing both medications to be applied simultaneously. This eliminates the need for separate drops with a time interval.
Combination drops offer the advantage of more rapid pressure reduction, which is crucial as lower intraocular pressure decreases the likelihood of glaucoma progression.
Micro invasive glaucoma surgery is another advanced option. These procedures allow for quicker patient recovery. Small stents, measuring less than a millimeter, or comfortable implants can be inserted to improve eye comfort, distinguishing them from traditional glaucoma surgeries. It's advisable to discuss these possibilities with your ophthalmologist.
A glaucoma diagnosis can evoke anxiety and depression in patients. Seeking support groups and professional help is essential. Openly discussing concerns with your ophthalmologist or optometrist is encouraged. Remember, you're not alone, and many treatment options are available. These treatments often halt disease progression, enabling a healthy lifestyle and preserving your ability to enjoy the things you love seeing.
If you have questions or concerns about glaucoma, don't hesitate to reach out to your ophthalmologist or optometrist. They are there to assist you in managing your condition and maintaining your eye health.