Glaucoma (pronounced as Glou-ko-ma’) is the leading cause of blindness in the United States, especially among older people. Glaucoma is a loss of vision resulting from damage to optic nerve fibre (which carries the images seen by the eye to the brain) due to elevated intraocular pressure.
Intraocular pressure is the pressure inside the eye as a result of the good working relationship between aqueous humour production and drainage.
The mechanism of raised intraocular pressure in glaucoma is impaired outflow of aqueous resulting from abnormalities within the drainage system of the anterior chamber angle or impaired access of aqueous to the drainage system.
The intraocular pressure is determined by the rate at which aqueous is produced and the rate at which it exits from the eye. In glaucoma, this balance has been disrupted, thus fluid formed does not leave as rapidly as it is formed so the pressure builds up.
The increased pressure damages the optic nerves of the retina and vision is affected.
Once a significant number of nerve fibres are damaged, blind spots develop in the visual field. Blindness results when the entire nerve fibre is damaged.
This is why early detection and treatment by the Best Ophthalmologist are the keys to preventing damage to the optic nerve fibre and blindness from the disease.
Different Types of glaucoma are Primary and Secondary glaucoma depending on the presence or absence of associated factors contributing to the pressure rise.
According to this mechanism of intraocular pressure, glaucoma is classified into open-angle glaucoma and closed-angle glaucoma.
Thief of Sight
Open-angle glaucoma is one of the most common types of glaucoma. Here aqueous drainage becomes inefficient over time mostly as a result of ageing this leads to a gradual build-up of pressure within the eye.
When there is damage to the optic nerve due to this increase in pressure, then it is called Chronic open-angle glaucoma.
This is often the reason glaucoma is called,” the thief of sight”. The damage to vision is so gradual and painless that you are not aware of it until the damage is done.
Therefore there is a need for regular checks by people of the age group 40-70 because sometimes the disease is asymptomatic. Visit your eye doctor today for an eye exam.