Glaucoma affects 2% of the world’s population and is a major cause of blindness. Fortunately, it can be treated with medication or surgery.
Glaucoma is commonly the result of elevated pressure in the eye. This pressure can damage the main nerve connecting the eye to the brain, known as the optic nerve. When the pressure is not relieved, it leads to blind spots in one’s peripheral vision. Over time, these blind spots grow as shown in the images below. The ultimate result, left untreated, is total blindness.
Risk factors for glaucoma include: a family history of glaucoma, high eye pressure, thin corneas, high nearsightedness, and asymmetry in optic nerve appearance between your two eyes. Older eyes are also at higher risk of developing glaucoma.
If you have any risk factors, complete routine eye exams are recommended. We especially encourage patients over age 65 to conduct yearly exams with our clinic.