Glaucoma:Silent Thief of Sight
- Did you know glaucoma is the second leading cause of
blindness in black Americans?
The Glaucoma Research Foundation reports this disease occurs
five to eight times more often in black Americans than
Exactly why this happens is not known, but research points to
a genetic component. Research has also shown glaucoma occurs
earlier and progresses more rapidly in black Americans.
- What is glaucoma?
Glaucoma is an eye condition that damages the optic nerve.
Pressure associated with build up of a clear fluid found
normally in the eye causes this damage which leads to
vision loss or blindness. Good vision depends on a healthy optic
The most common form of glaucoma, open angle glaucoma,
can strike without warning, pain or symptoms.Thus, it is
"the sneak, thief of sight".
A second form of glaucoma, closed angle, is far less common.
is sudden with severe eye pain, eye redness and a change in
vision. Closed angle
glaucoma requires immediate medical attention.
- Beside race, what other factors contibute to the
disease in black Americans?
- Family History
- Age greater than 40
- Diabetes and Hypertension
- Steroid use over a long time period
- Very near-sighted or far-sighted
- History of previous eye injury
- What can I do to protect my sight?
Early diagnosis and treatment is key in preventing vision loss
Glaucoma is detected by a complete(comprehensive)eye exam.
This exam includes tests to determine how well you can see(visual
field and acuity),
whether there is damage to the optic nerve and measurement of
pressure inside the eye(tonometry).
Immediate treatment for early-stage, open-angel glaucoma can
delay progression of the disease.
- What are the treatments for this
Eye drops(drug therapy) and surgery are the two standard
treatments for glaucoma.
Once vision loss occurs, it cannot be reversed.
Fortunately,further vision loss can be prevented once glaucoma is
Learn More About Glaucoma
Last updated: 6-December-2015
Webmaster: Suzanne Pearson
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©copyright 2015 by Suzanne Pearson