Ophthalmologist Questions Glaucoma

What exactly is glaucoma?

I hear about glaucoma and I get tested for it but I have no idea what glaucoma really is. How do you get it? Can you prevent it?

15 Answers

Here is a webpage on the diagnosis and treatment of glaucoma that we send our patients. https://totaleyecare.com/glaucoma-diagnosis-treatment/
We recommend check for glaucoma yearly since there is no pain associated with it and also I would recommend baseline photos and OCT to have for future changes and keep in your files to show your doctors in the future. It can happen at any age.
Just like your blood pressure, glaucoma is high pressure in the eyes which, if it exceeds its healthy pressure, its level may lead to optic nerve damage. If left undetected and untreated, it can result in decreased peripheral vision and eventually lead to blindness.

You can read more about it on my website at:
The short answer: Glaucoma is a disease where the optic nerve (which transmits information from your retina back to your brain for processing) is unhealthy and not functioning correctly.

This disease can occur due to various reasons. Traditionally, we check for elevated (fluid) pressure within the eye. The thinking is that this fluid pressure can build up and injure the optic nerve and prevent it from working correctly. If the nerve does not work correctly, it can't transmit retinal information appropriately, and the brain therefore cannot interpret the vision, AKA loss of vision. However, this is only one way of developing glaucoma. Often times, glaucoma is inheritable, but can be individual and associated with other outside factors such as trauma to the eye.

A few potential measures one can take to lessen the risk of glaucoma: 1) stop smoking or don't start smoking, 2) maintain good cardiovascular health - which includes measures to reduce the risk of diabetes, and 3) be cautious to prevent eye injuries.
The exact definition of glaucoma is complicated but for simplicity it is a group of eye disorders associated with elevated eye pressures which can cause permeant and irreversible vision loss. (some glaucoma's occur at normal pressure). The damage from Glaucoma usually can be prevented with early detection and treatment if needed. See your Eye MD provider.
Glaucoma is a genetic disease . There are different types of glaucoma . Narrow angle , open angle , congenital , secondary open angle , traumatic glaucoma , drug induced glaucoma etc .
It has to diagnosed and monitored by glaucoma work up which includes visual field tests , GDx or Optic nerve head OCT , pachymetry , gonioscopy etc. infra ocular pressures need to be checked . It is treated by eye drops as well as laser and other types of surgeries depending on the severity of glaucoma and type too .
Great question!

Glaucoma is an eye disease that destroys the nerve fibers that make up the
optic nerve. The destruction of the nerve fiber layer causes loss of
peripheral vision. The loss of peripheral vision occurs at such a slow rate
that patients are not aware they are losing vision until the end stages of
the disease. For this reason, everyone should have an annual eye health
exam to screen for eye diseases such as glaucoma, whether or not they need
vision correction. If you need a great eye doctor, reach out to us today,
www.starsinyoureyes.com. Dr. Richards and Dr. Colorado want to help you
save your vision.

Glaucoma is treatable, but must be caught early in order to prevent
devastating vision loss. There is no way to prevent glaucoma. Genetics can
play a part, but even if you do not have a family history, you can still
develop glaucoma. Below are some other risk factors that can increase your
chance of developing glaucoma.

- Having high internal eye pressure (intraocular pressure)
- Being over age 60
- Being black or Hispanic
- Having a family history of the condition
- Having certain medical conditions, such as diabetes, heart disease,
high blood pressure and sickle cell anemia, sleep apnea
- Having certain eye conditions, such as nearsightedness
- Having had an eye injury or certain types of eye surgery
- Early estrogen deficiency, such as can occur after removal of both
ovaries (bilateral oophorectomy) before age 43
- Taking corticosteroid medications, especially eyedrops, for a long time
- This is from Mayo website.
Glaucoma is progressive damage to the optic nerve, which is responsible for taking the "signal" from the eye to the brain. In many cases, this is associated with higher pressure in the eye, though not always. Risk factors include a family history of glaucoma, age, gender and other comorbidities (diabetes). In most cases patients will not notice visual symptoms until glaucoma is advanced. These include loss of peripheral vision, blurred vision and pain. Glaucoma can be diagnosed with a careful eye exam by an eyecare professional which includes a detailed history, exam to include eye pressure and evaluation of the optic nerve, and in some cases, pictures and visual field testing.
Glaucoma is a condition in which the pressure of the fluid in the eye can be high enough to cause damage to the optic nerve and peripheral vision. One way to prevent it is to have your eye pressure checked through a routine eye examination. It is often a "silent" disease in which a person would not know if their eye pressure is high or not.
Glaucoma is a silent chronic disease which if undiagnosed leads to blindness.
Thus it is important to see an Eye MD physician to evaluate if you are at risk.
Some risk factors include family history, color of your skin, thickness of the cornea, the pressure inside the eye, and the actual function and structure of the optic nerve itself. It is the damage to the nerve which leads to blindness. So glaucoma is multifactorial. Glaucoma is NOT just pressure.
Glaucoma is a eye disease which is normally associated with high intraocular pressure, although there is a rarer form in which the pressure in the eye can be in the normal range. The disease effects the ocular nerve of the eye which in turn damages the nerve fibers. The early signs are silent- in which the patient does not notice any difference in their vision, but their peripheral vision begins to be reduced.
It is often hereditary, and when treated early, can be treated with eye drops or more advanced cases require surgery.
Stacey Michaels OD
Glaucoma is a silent disease which can cause permanent blindness, if not detected. It damages the nerve of your eye usually slowly. Once damage is done to the nerve, it causes loss of the peripheral vision as well as will increase the normal blind spot we all have. The good news is, glaucoma most often can be diagnosed early through comprehensive eye exams with an ophthalmologist and is most often treated and controlled with no vision loss. Glaucoma can be heredity, from trauma or just through normal aging. There is nothing that can be done to prevent getting this disease, but as I said, can most often be detected and controlled with yearly eye examinations. If your ophthalmologist feels you are at a higher risk of getting the disease, they will advise you to be seen more often.
Glaucoma is most commonly an age-related condition, where the normal internal circulating eye fluid "pressure" begins to rise. Most problems related to aging cause less effective internal "eye drains". This pressure build-up puts stress on the optic nerve "computer vision processing cable" that is responsible for sending your "vision" to your brain for processing. Long term pressure build-up damages this connection, leading to potential for visual loss. It is usually a "SILENT" disease in its most common forms and requires eye exam & testing to diagnose.

There are other less common glaucoma conditions, sometimes associated with other eye diseases. Most cases occur after a person turns 40 years old, but rarer forms can be seen earlier.
Glaucoma is the damage of the optic nerve, specially in the part which connects to the eye, and it can be caused by trauma, high intraocular pressure, low oxygenation, etc. There are many factors including family, race, intraocular pressure, cataracts, ambiental, etc. The more factors you have, the more likely you have glaucoma. Some types of glaucoma might be preventable with getting your eyes checked atleast once a year by an eye specialist.
Glaucoma is raised eye pressure, somewhat like raised blood pressure and must be reduced to a normal level. Persistent raised eye pressure damages the eye nerves leading to permanent blurring and loss of vision. Causes include genetics, family history, trauma, diabetic eye complications etc. Prevention is by regular check-ups to measure the eye pressure, visual fields and OCT tests on a yearly basis.