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All About Glaucoma and Its Treatment
Glaucoma is a condition characterised by damage to the optic nerve, resulting in vision loss and potential blindness. This condition is often associated with ageing but can also be caused by other factors such as eye injuries, certain medications, and certain medical conditions. Fortunately, early detection & timely intervention can help to halt the progression of glaucoma disease.
Types of Glaucoma
Open Angle Glaucoma
Open-angle glaucoma is the most common type and develops gradually over time. It occurs when the eye's drainage angle becomes less efficient, leading to increased fluid pressure within the eye. This elevated pressure can damage the optic nerve, resulting in gradual vision loss. Open-angle glaucoma is often asymptomatic in its early stages and can progress unnoticed until significant vision impairment occurs.
Angle-closure glaucoma is less common but considered a medical emergency. It happens when the eye's drainage angle becomes completely blocked, causing a sudden and severe increase in eye pressure. This glaucoma can cause intense eye pain, redness, blurred vision, nausea, and vomiting. Angle-closure glaucoma requires immediate medical attention to prevent permanent vision loss.
Normal-tension glaucoma, also known as low-tension glaucoma, is a form of glaucoma in which optic nerve damage and vision loss occur despite normal eye pressure. The exact cause of normal-tension glaucoma is not fully understood, but it is believed that factors other than elevated intraocular pressure contribute to its development. Regular eye exams are crucial for early detection and management of this type of glaucoma.
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What causes Glaucoma?Glaucoma can be caused by factors such as elevated intraocular pressure, impaired blood flow to the optic nerve, genetics, age, certain medical conditions, and certain medications.
Does Glaucoma only affect elderly people?Glaucoma can affect people of all ages, including infants and young adults, although it is more common in older individuals.
What are the side effects of Glaucoma treatment?Glaucoma treatment may have minor side effects like stinging, redness, or blurred vision with medications. Surgical interventions carry a small risk of complications such as infection, bleeding, or vision changes. Serious complications are rare.