Can you imagine if three million Americans had a disease, but only half of those know they even had it?! It may sound crazy, but that is the case where glaucoma is concerned. To compound the issue, the National Eye Institute projects the number of Americans affected by glaucoma will reach a staggering 4.2 million by 2030; a significant increase.
At Center For Sight, we are committed to educating our patients about this sight-stealing disease, which is the second leading cause of blindness in the world, according to the World Health Organization. We do this by providing the latest glaucoma treatments and management strategies.
All About Glaucoma
Glaucoma is a group of eye conditions that cause an increase in your eye’s intraocular pressure (IOP). Most of the time, this is caused by your eye being unable to drain fluid effectively. As pressure builds within the eye, it can lead to complications, most commonly damage to the optic nerve. Glaucoma is dangerous because it damages the eye slowly and shows no symptoms until it has reached an advanced stage.
Glaucoma is called “the silent thief of sight” since there are typically no symptoms, and once vision is lost, it cannot be reversed. Glaucoma can cause blindness if it is left untreated. And unfortunately, approximately 10% of people with glaucoma who receive proper treatment still experience loss of vision. Glaucoma, in fact, is the leading cause of irreversible blindness. Among African American and Latino populations, glaucoma is even more prevalent.
Glaucoma comes in many different forms, but the two main types are open-angle and angle-closure. Both are marked by increased pressure within the eye. Open-angle glaucoma is far more common, accounting for more than 90 percent of diagnosed cases.
Glaucoma Treatments at Center For Sight
The goal of glaucoma treatment at Center For Sight is to preserve your current level of vision and to prevent any further vision loss. Treatment can vary, depending on the type of glaucoma diagnosed, the degree to which the condition has progressed and your underlying risk factors, among other variables.
Glaucoma is a more complex disease than most people think. For this reason, it’s so important to choose a trusted and experienced doctor for your glaucoma management. For most patients with glaucoma, medication alone (eye drops) will be enough to control eye pressure. In some cases, several medications working together are necessary to maintain adequate pressure control. When medical treatment alone fails to sufficiently reduce the pressure, surgery is another option.
There are also a number of ocular implants that can now be used to provide glaucoma relief. These often decrease or eliminate the need for medicated eye drops. Ask your Center For Sight ophthalmologist if iStent® or Hydrus Microstent® could help you reduce your need for glaucoma medication.
iStent is a small intraocular stent that is intended to be placed during cataract surgery. It works by creating a small passage that allows for the inner eye fluid to drain out of the eye. This makes the pressure of your inner eye decrease in a way similar to how your eye manages pressure naturally.
Hydrus Microstent is designed to reduce eye pressure in adult patients with mild to moderate primary open-angle glaucoma. It works by acting as a support structure in one part of the natural drainage pathway of the eye and can be placed at the time of cataract surgery.
Healthy Eyes Make for a 20/Happy Outlook
At Center For Sight, our ophthalmologists have the training and experience to treat your glaucoma safely and effectively. After careful evaluation of the type and severity of your glaucoma, age, lifestyle and a host of other factors, we will recommend a personalized treatment plan that is customized for your individual needs. Schedule an appointment today.