Our eye care experts can help you live with glaucoma.
Glaucoma is a leading cause of blindness. When patients have glaucoma, fluid in the front of the eye does not drain properly. As the fluid builds up, pressure inside the eye rises. Without treatment, this pressure can damage the optic nerve and cause vision loss.
Glaucoma is a lifelong disease, but treatment and surgery can often help control it. Affinity Health System eye care experts in the Fox Cities and Oshkosh can evaluate your risk for glaucoma, and recommend appropriate treatments.
Types of Glaucoma
Open angle glaucoma develops gradually and without symptoms. It is usually found in the early stages, during a routine eye exam.
- Closed angle glaucoma results from a sudden blockage of fluid draining from the eye. The patient usually feels sharp eye pain and blurred vision.
- Glaucoma can occur as a complication after an injury, inflammation or a disease such as diabetes.
- Congenital glaucoma is due to a defect in the eye’s drainage system, which occurs as a baby is developing. Parents may notice their baby’s eye getting bigger, cloudy, watering and closing in response to light.
Anyone can get glaucoma. Older adults, people with a family history of glaucoma, diabetics and those taking long-term steroid medications are at higher risk. African Americans have the highest risk of glaucoma. Glaucoma is the leading cause of irreversible blindness among the black population.
There are usually no early warning signs of glaucoma. In later stages, symptoms include difficulty focusing on close work, seeing halos around lights, loss of peripheral vision, tunnel vision and frequent changes in eyeglass prescriptions.
Tests and Procedures
An eye exam may detect glaucoma. The most effective exam includes dilating the pupil and looking inside the eye.