Glaucoma is a progressive eye disease that can lead to the gradual loss of vision, and it is one of the leading causes of blindness in the United States. While glaucoma is not a preventable condition, it can be managed and controlled through medical eye treatment. The key to successfully managing glaucoma and preventing blindness is early intervention. While it is ideal for patients to undergo regular eye exams so that conditions such as glaucoma can be caught early on, it is also important to understand the most common glaucoma symptoms so treatment can be sought at Monterey County Eye Associates as soon as any signs of trouble develop. Our eye doctors are happy to teach patients about the early symptoms of glaucoma, and discuss treatment options with those patients who are diagnosed with this condition.
There are actually two types of glaucoma and they each result in a different set of symptoms for patients. Unfortunately, primary open-angle glaucoma, which is the most common form of this eye disease, may not result in any sudden or obvious symptoms. Instead, this condition causes a gradual loss of peripheral vision, which will eventually lead to tunnel vision if the condition is not recognized and treated. It is always important to take even the slightest changes in vision seriously and to report these to your eye doctor as soon as possible so that the eyes can be checked for conditions such as glaucoma.
Although not as common as primary open-angle glaucoma, there are patients who suffer from a form of glaucoma known as acute angle-closure glaucoma. This condition is more likely to produce significant side effects that will be noticed by patients. Below are some common symptoms of acute angle-closure glaucoma:
- Severe eye pain, sometimes accompanied by nausea and vomiting
- The appearance of red eyes
- Sudden changes in vision
- An onset of glares or halos around sources of light
- Blurry vision
Again, these are all symptoms that should be immediately reported to one of our eye doctors so that the eyes can be examined for signs of glaucoma or other eye diseases.
Once glaucoma has developed, any damage that has occurred cannot be reversed. However, our doctors can help to control the symptoms of glaucoma and prevent further damage to vision by offering treatment that is meant to lower eye pressure and improve drainage of eye fluids. There are several treatment options to consider in cases of glaucoma. When glaucoma is caught in its earliest stages, our doctors will likely start with the most conservative form of treatment, which will involve medicated eye drops and/or oral medication. As glaucoma progresses, or if patients are unresponsive to medicinal treatment, more invasive treatment may become necessary. Our doctors also offer laser surgery to open clogged drainage canals so that fluid can be drained from the eye more effectively.
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The key to early treatment for glaucoma or any other eye disease is early detection. We urge patients to have their eyes and vision checked regularly so that any conditions can be addressed right away. Schedule an appointment with one of our experienced eye doctors at your earliest convenience. We look forward to hearing from you!