8 Common Questions About Glaucoma
At ICON Eyecare in Grand Junction, we’re a Glaucoma Center of Excellence. As the only glaucoma clinic between Denver and Salt Lake City, we perform advanced research on the disease and offer exceptional care to our patients. We are also pleased to offer everyone information about glaucoma because, as with diabetes, many people with the condition don’t realize that they have it, and so delay treatment.
Besides progression without obvious symptoms, diabetes and glaucoma have these traits in common:
- Millions of people in the U.S. have these conditions.
- There are excellent treatments available.
- Knowing that you have these conditions and getting treatment can make a big difference in your life.
Eye doctors check your eye pressure, a sign of glaucoma, at every routine eye exam. It’s how we help to get patients on the road to treatment early and help save their eyesight. Here are eight common questions our patients ask about glaucoma, its symptoms, causes and treatment options.
1. What is usually the first sign of glaucoma?
Common open-angle glaucoma rarely shows symptoms until it’s far along. A high eye pressure result at your regular eye exam is usually the first way that glaucoma is detected. Rarer forms of glaucoma show as eye pain and vision disturbances, so seek help quickly if you experience those.
2. Can glaucoma be stopped?
Yes. Simple treatment, usually just lifelong daily eye drops, can stop or slow the progression of glaucoma, but cannot reverse its effects.
3. What happens if you have glaucoma?
Depending how severe your glaucoma is you may have certain vision changes, such as reduced peripheral vision. Damage to the optic nerve over time will result in loss of vision.
4. What is the best treatment for glaucoma?
Currently, the most common treatment is eye drops. Sometimes systemic treatments and brief laser surgery are used, all to lower the eye pressure.
5. What age do you usually get glaucoma?
Open-angle glaucoma, the slowly developing type most glaucoma patients experience, typically appears around age 60 but could develop sooner based on the patient’s particular risk factors.
6. How quickly does glaucoma progress?
For open-angle glaucoma, the progression is typically slow. Developing over months or years, the early stages may go undetected by patients. However, other less common forms of glaucoma, such as narrow- or closed-angle glaucoma can progress quickly.
7. What is the main cause of glaucoma?
High intraocular eye pressure (IOP) is highly associated with development of glaucoma, affecting the optic nerve. Contributing factors include family history and certain medical conditions.
8. What happens if glaucoma is left untreated?
This is a tough question to answer because glaucoma is so treatable. Without treatment, unfortunately, the patient’s vision will often degrade, leading to blindness in advanced stages.
Experienced, Compassionate Eye Doctors Providing Expert Ophthalmology and Treatment for Glaucoma in Grand Junction.
At ICON Eyecare in Grand Junction, we’re advancing medical knowledge about the eye so that we can offer our patients the best possible treatment. Our experienced doctors and team-based approach to treatment make us the best choice for specialized, expert care of your eyes.