Glaucoma is a disease of the eye in which the optic nerve is damaged. It is the second leading cause of blindness in the world.
Glaucoma affects 1 in 200 people aged 50 and younger, and 1 in 10 over the age of 80. It is a progressive and irreversible disease which results in the loss of peripheral vision.
It is often associated with a build up of pressure of fluid behind the eye. Raised intraocular pressure is a significant risk factor in developing the nerve damage. It is important to have regular eye examinations as one person may develop nerve damage at a relatively low pressure, where as another may have a relatively high pressure for many years and never develop any damage.
If left untreated it leads to permanent and irreversible damage to the optic nerve resulting in visual field loss, which can cause progress to blindness. Glaucoma has been nicknamed ‘silent thief of sight’ because the loss of vision normally occurs gradually over some time without any symptoms.
It is often recognised once it is in its advanced stages. Once the visual field is damaged it cannot be corrected. If the condition is detected early enough it is possible to slow down the development and progression with medical and surgical treatment.
Our highly skilled optometrists, together with our state of the art technology can detect early stages of glaucoma and monitor its progress.
It is highly recommended to get screened for glaucoma as part of your regular eye examination, as the earlier the detection the more sight you can maintain.