GLAUCOMA; THE SILENT THIEF OF SIGHT.
Glaucoma is a group of eye conditions that damages the optic nerve ( the part of the eye that conveys sensory information from the retina to the brain). This damage is most often caused by an abnormally high pressure in the eye. Glaucoma is one of the leading causes of blindness for people over the age of 60. It can occur at any age but is more common in older adults. Glaucoma can be inherited
Blindness from glaucoma can often be prevented with early diagnosis and treatment.
SO, WHAT CAUSES GLAUCOMA?
The fluid inside the eye, called aqueous humour, usually flows out of the eye through a mesh-like channel (drainage). If this channel gets blocked, or the eye is producing too much fluid than is being drained, the liquid builds up. Most of the times, the cause of this blockage is usually unknown, however, it can be inherited. (Passed down from parents to offspring)
Less-common causes of glaucoma include a blunt or chemical injury to your eye, severe eye infection, blocked blood vessels inside your eye, and inflammatory conditions. It usually affects both eyes, but it may be worse in one than the other.
The very dangerous thing about glaucoma is that at the early stage, it doesn’t show any symptoms. That is why it is universally regarded as the “silent thief of eye sight”.
There are many types of glaucoma but the common ones are the Open Angle Glaucoma (commonest) and Acute Closed Angle Glaucoma. The Open angle glaucoma does not present symptoms like the closed angle type.
WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS OF GLAUCOMA?
The symptoms you will experience depends on the type and stage of glaucoma.
You will notice patchy blind spots in your side (peripheral) or central vision, frequently in both eyes. You will also notice deteriorating vision.
Acute closed angle glaucoma: The symptoms are immediate. They include;
Severe headache, Eye pain, Nausea, vomiting, Blurred vision, Halos around lights and Eye redness
SO, WHO ARE THOSE AT RISK?
Everyone is at risk of glaucoma. But, here are the risk factor of glaucoma!
- Age over 45 years
- Family history of glaucoma
- Being black, Asian or Hispanic
- History of elevated intraocular pressure
- Decrease in corneal thickness and rigidity
- Being extremely nearsighted or farsighted
- Having certain medical conditions, such as diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure and sickle cell anaemia
- History of eye injury or certain types of eye surgery
- Taking corticosteroid medications, especially eyedrops, for a long time
WHAT CAN YOU DO IF YOU ARE AT RISK?
Know your family’s eye health history and get a dilated eye examination at least once in a year. Only regular eye examination can uncover open angle glaucoma when it sets in.
At Supreme Vision, we care.
Supreme Vision (Eye Clinic)
2, Bouar Close, Off Bangui Street, Off Adetokunbo Ademola Crescent Wuse 2, Abuja.
Call us on +234 808 586 1111