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common eye conditions

Glaucoma

Glaucoma is a disease that is complicated and results in optic nerve damage that causes progressive and irreversible loss of vision. It is second to cataracts as a disease that causes blindness.

Glaucoma is a disease of the eye that steals vision gradually. Typically, there aren’t any early signs to warn you nor do people feel pain as a result of glaucoma. This disease slowly develops and you may not notice loss of sight for several years. Of the people who have glaucoma, most feel normal and initially do not realize any vision changes. This is because the vision loss starts with a loss of peripheral or side vision. The sharpness or visual acuity is still present until the disease is much further along. The disease is quite advanced when a patient notices vision loss. If glaucoma is not treated, it can cause blindness. There is good news! You can maintain your vision through detecting and treating glaucoma early by having eye exams regularly.

Glaucoma is a group of diseases.

  • Primary Open-Angle Glaucoma
  • Angle-Closure Glaucoma
  • Normal-Tension Glaucoma
  • Other Types of Glaucoma

People who have angle-closure glaucoma may have very blurred vision, headaches, experience nausea, eye pain, and may see rainbows around lights at night. To treat this condition, Dr. Parikh may need perform an iridotomy with either a laser surgery or conventional surgery to remove the small portion of the outer edge of the iris that has bunched up and caused your drainage canals to be blocked.

Glaucoma image 1

Primary Open-Angle Glaucoma

About three million Americans are affected by this form of glaucoma. It is the most common form of glaucoma. The disease occurs over time when the eye’s drainage canals are clogged.

The correct amount of fluid can’t drain out of the eye and causes the eye’s inner pressure (intraocular pressure [IOP]) to rise.

This form of glaucoma occurs even though the entry to the eye’s drainage canal is clear and appears to be correctly working. However the clogging of the canal is happening further inside. This is very similar to a sink’s drain pipe clogging up under the sink.

Open-Angle Glaucoma does not present symptoms or warning signs to the patient. If it is not diagnosed and treated, you can expect gradual vision loss. This disease slowly develops and you may not notice loss of sight for several years. When discovered and treated early, this disease generally responds well to medication. If your vision loss progresses, you may need to have Dr. Parikh perform a trabeculectomy to lower the IOP.

Glaucoma image 2

Angle-Closure Glaucoma

Angle-Closure Glaucoma is a rare form of glaucoma and is also called acute glaucoma or narrow angle glaucoma. It differs from open-angle glaucoma because the eye pressure rises very rapidly. The eye pressure rises quickly because the drainage canals become blocked or are covered over. This is similar to something covering your sink’s drain. When you have angle-closure glaucoma your iris is not as wide and therefore not as open. For example if you have angle-closure glaucoma and if you walk into a dark room, your pupil may enlarge too much or may enlarge too fast. This causes the outer edge of the iris to bunch up and block the drainage canals. Dr. Parikh can perform a quick test, called gonioscopy, to see if your angle is normal (wide) or not normal (narrow).

People who have angle-closure glaucoma may have very blurred vision, headaches, experience nausea, eye pain, and may see rainbows around lights at night. To treat this condition, Dr. Parikh may need perform an iridotomy with either a laser surgery or conventional surgery to remove the small portion of the outer edge of the iris that has bunched up and caused your drainage canals to be blocked.

Learn more about Glaucoma
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