Who Is At Risk of Developing Glaucoma?
Although over three million people are affected by glaucoma in the United States alone, many people remain unaware that they have this debilitating condition. In the earliest stages of glaucoma, patients typically do not exhibit any symptoms, even if the disease is beginning to impair their quality of vision. In addition, according to the Glaucoma Research Foundation, people can lose up to 40% of their vision without realizing a change is taking place.
When left untreated, glaucoma can result in blindness. In fact, the Glaucoma Research Foundation has stated that up to 12% of all cases of blindness in the United States are caused by glaucoma. Therefore, our eye doctors believe it is particularly important for high-risk individuals to undergo routine glaucoma screenings so they can receive prompt treatment if the disease is detected. Characteristics of patients who are more likely to develop glaucoma include:
- Over the age of 60
- African or Hispanic descent
- Type 2 Diabetes
- Family history of glaucoma
- Severe nearsightedness
- High eye pressure
If we discover you have glaucoma during a screening, there are a number of treatment options available that can help preserve vision. In addition to prescription eye drops and oral medication, laser treatment such as Selective Laser Trabeculoplasty (SLT) and small medical devices such as the iStent® or the CyPass® Micro-Stent can relieve pressure on the optic nerve and prevent further damage.
For more information about glaucoma, or to schedule an eye exam with one of our doctors, please contact us today.