What is glaucoma?
Glaucoma is a common progressive disease that leads to optic nerve damage. Glaucoma develops when the drainage in the front of your eye isn’t functioning correctly, allowing fluids to build up, which can damage your optic nerve.
There are several types of glaucoma, including:
● Open-angle glaucoma
With open-angle glaucoma, the drainage between your iris and your cornea slowly clogs, causing fluid to build up. This is the most common form of the condition, accounting for 90% of the cases. It’s also one of the hardest to detect because you rarely feel any symptoms.
● Angle-closure glaucoma
This type of glaucoma is caused by a closed or narrow-angle between your cornea and your iris. Symptoms of angle-closure glaucoma come on quickly and demand immediate medical attention. You experience this type of glaucoma acutely in the form of discomfort and pain.
● Normal-tension glaucoma
Your optic nerve is damaged, even without significant pressure in your eyes.
What causes glaucoma?
The causes of glaucoma remain a mystery, but several factors put you more at risk of developing the condition, including:
● High blood pressure
● Macular degeneration
● Age (over 60)
● African Americans: six to eight times more common
● Eye injury
Since there’s no known cause of the disease, there is no cure. There is, however, much that Dr. Ngo can do to halt its progression, especially if she catches it early.
How is glaucoma detected and treated?
Since most cases of glaucoma don’t have any symptoms, it’s essential to keep up with your regular eye exams so Dr. Ngo can spot and test for early signs of the condition. To do this, she turns to:
● Ocular coherence tomography to study your retina
● Visual field testing to detect peripheral vision loss
● Digital camera imaging of your retina to detect changes
If Dr. Ngo detects glaucoma, she recommends the following treatments, depending on how far along it’s progressed:
● Prescribed daily eye drops to lower pressure
● Laser surgery for better drainage
If you have any questions about our services, please contact us today at (713) 722-9066.
Can being on Glaucoma medication lead to dry eyes?The answer is Yes, being on Glaucoma medication can lead to dry eyes. It is one of the most notable side effects of using glaucoma medication. The high concentration of preservatives that are in most glaucoma medications is believed to be the main cause. The chronic nature of the condition itself leads to the necessity of being on these drops usually for life. There are other treatments, but due to the progressive nature of glaucoma, most patients will end up being on multiple medications, even after any kind of surgical intervention.
Most patients will develop dry eyes along with glaucoma as the condition progresses. There are other factors that also influence the development of dry eyes with glaucoma. But for the purpose of this post, we will only concentrate on the prolonged use of glaucoma medications and dry eyes. Don’t hesitate to ask your eye doctor about dry eyes if you are on glaucoma medications. Many glaucoma patients suffer undetected dry eyes because most feel that glaucoma is the worst of the two evils. But you should not have to suffer dry eyes. They should be treated concomitantly.