I’ve heard of glaucoma before. Back in my college days, I knew someone who was in the early stage of glaucoma. But I never really looked into it, not realizing how serious it actually was.
Only in the recent days have I began realizing how serious a disease glaucoma is.
Glaucoma is one of the leading causes of blindness. In fact, glaucoma almost always leads to blindness. It is a disease where the nerve that is responsible for our vision – the optic nerve – becomes damaged.
It is important to recognize the early signs of glaucoma. Sometimes, glaucoma sets in suddenly, characterized by headache, nausea, eye pain, blurred vision and halos. The eyes’ visual fields gradually become more and more narrow, until only a tunnel of vision remains. In advanced stages, the patient goes blind.
For most, the symptoms become apparent only when the damage to the optic nerve is extensive. What’s alarming is that there is no cure for glaucoma. Once it sets in, the damage it causes cannot be reversed. So early detection of glaucoma is absolutely necessary.
Treatment of glaucoma includes eyedrops or oral medications to decrease eye pressure. For more advanced cases, surgery may be necessary to reduce eye pressure. Laser surgery, iridotomy, and operative surgery are some of the options for treatment. The Asian Eye Institute offers these services, as well as patient education.
If you have any of the symptoms mentioned above, or if you have relatives who suffer from glaucoma or blindness, it may be time to have your eyes checked. Remember, it is possible to save sight if glaucoma is diagnosed early.