Tuesday, December 11, 2018
Text Size

Glaucoma

Glaucoma is defined as a disease that affects the optic nerve and results in progressive vision loss. The optic nerve is the large bundle of over 1 million nerve fibers that connects your eyes to your brain. The loss of these fibers over time directly corresponds to loss of vision. With early detection and preventative eye care, Glaucoma can be effectively managed to help prevent severe vision loss. 

 Glaucoma

Studies show that high intraocular pressure, the pressure inside the eyeball, is a major risk factor for Glaucoma. Towards the front of our eye is a space called the anterior chamber, where a nourishing fluid sustains nearby tissue. This fluid flows through the chamber, and exits through a mesh work at an angle, where the cornea and iris meet. In open angle glaucoma, the fluid has trouble draining through the mesh work and the fluid builds up. This build up causes the pressure inside the eye to spike and this high pressure damages the optic nerve, resulting in vision loss. In some cases, the angle that the fluid drains out of is too narrow, and results in closed angle glaucoma. If the angle is too narrow and the pressure spikes a person may feel nausea and pain; this is a medical emergency.

 Glaucoma

The demographics at highest risk for this disease are African Americans over 40, Mexican Americans over 60 and those with a family history of glaucoma. There is no cure for Glaucoma but there are eye drops that are effective at lowering the pressure in the eye thus reducing risk of vision loss. There are those that are born with congenital glaucoma, and also those who have lost vision even though they have normal pressures (low-tension). 

Dr O'Connor does not perform surgeries or procedures for glaucoma, but she is committed to her patients eye care. Working closely with many ophthalmologists, she will be able to refer you for any procedures or surgeries that you may need. 

 

See What You've Been Missing