Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Glaucoma: One of the More Easily Prevented Causes of Blindness

Glaucoma is one of the more easily preventable causes of blindness.

Simply a raised internal eye pressure Glaucoma in its early phase has no visible manifestation. You may after a while think that you need new glasses or notice lack of peripheral vision.  By this time damage is becoming severe and treatment is necessary. Treatment can include use of drops or an implant of a tube under the eyelid to allow the release of internal eye pressure by allowing the fluid inside the eye to exit over the surface of the eye. This tube is not noticable after a few hours, I have had to receive this treatment myself. Now and again my eye will seem to water excessively, that is liquid from inside the eye, leaking to the outside.

In this interesting article about Glaucoma testing in Australia, More Australians fear Blindness than Spiders, but do nothing.. The fear of blindness is very real.  After all, more people go blind every year than are seriously injured by spiders, or any of the half dozen other phobias mentioned in the article.

I have had Glaucoma, mine was induced by the use of steroids for my Central Retinal Vein Occlusion (CRVO) I was made aware of the risk, for glaucoma by my retinologist at the start of treatment. Unfortunately the glaucoma was much worse than we estimated, causing major damage to the optic nerve.

That aside, Glaucoma for the general population is easily tested for, a pressure check takes all of thirty seconds, and measuring of the optic disc a matter of minutes too.

If undertaken as part of a semi-annual check means little effort is required by you to help prevent the most easily treatable problem and prevent long term damage. Or Blindness.

My glaucoma problem is not typical, it was a calculated risk taken by me and my retinologist, in the light of severe consequences doing nothing.

But most Glaucoma damage is very preventable.

Ask your eye doctor to add the neccessary checks into your normal eye checks. There is no invasive procedure, no pain and in the long term it can save your sight.

Glaucoma, take the Test advice