Catonsville Eye Group
Optometrists located in Catonsville, MD
Glaucoma, a leading cause of blindness, affects more than 3 million Americans, including about 2.7 million over the age of 40. If you live in or around Catonsville, Maryland, and have a family history of glaucoma, you should have regular comprehensive eye exams with the expert optometrists at Catonsville Eye Group so your eye doctor can catch it early. The doctors and their staff diagnose glaucoma and provide treatments to protect your vision. Call the practice or schedule your next eye exam online today.
Glaucoma Q & A
What is glaucoma?
Glaucoma is a condition where excessive pressure in your eye damages your optic nerve. It’s one of the leading causes of blindness in America today.
The two most common forms of glaucoma are open-angle and closed-angle. They get their name from the condition of the drainage angles in your eyes. The drainage angles are located between your iris and your cornea and allow excess fluid to escape your eye. When your eye fluid doesn’t drain properly, it accumulates and increases the pressure in your eye, eventually damaging your optic nerve.
Open-angle glaucoma is the most prevalent form of the disease. Your drainage angles are open, but your trabecular meshwork is partially blocked and prevents proper drainage. Closed-angle glaucoma develops when your iris bulges and narrows or blocks your drainage angle.
What are the symptoms of glaucoma?
An anecdotal name for glaucoma is the silent thief of sight. This is because glaucoma doesn’t cause symptoms until your optic nerve is already damaged and your vision is irreparably harmed. The only way to diagnose glaucoma is to have regular comprehensive eye exams with the experts at Catonsville Eye Group.
As the disease advances, you may notice blind spots in your vision or start to have severe headaches and eye pain. If you notice these symptoms, call Catonsville Eye Group to schedule an appointment immediately.
What are the risk factors for glaucoma?
While glaucoma can occur at any age, it’s diagnosed more often in people over the age of 60. Other risk factors include:
- A family history of glaucoma
- Health conditions like high blood pressure, diabetes, and heart disease
- Severe nearsightedness
- Eye injuries or surgery
- Long-term use of medications like corticosteroids
If you have any of these risk factors, make sure you have a comprehensive eye exam including glaucoma screenings annually.
How is glaucoma treated?
If your Catonsville Eye Group optometrist diagnoses glaucoma in its early stages, he usually begins treatment with medicated eyedrops. The drops help your eyes produce less fluid, which can reduce the pressure in your eye.
However, if your condition is more advanced, your doctor may suggest treatments to open your drainage angles, laser therapy, or other procedures to improve drainage.
Routine eye exams are the best way to protect your eye health and your vision. Call Catonsville Eye Group or schedule an appointment online today.