Glaucoma is an eye condition in which damage to the optic nerve leads to progressive, irreversible vision loss. This damage is usually due to fluid build-up within the eye that causes high eye pressure.

What are the symptoms?

Initially, glaucoma symptoms are subtle and often go unnoticed. For this reason, the disease is often called “The Silent Thief of Sight.” Noticeable symptoms may include headaches, eye pain, difficulty adjusting to the dark, and deteriorating peripheral vision.

A routine pressure check can often detect glaucoma before symptoms become noticeable.

How is it treated?

Although there is currently no cure for glaucoma, there are several effective treatment options to slow or halt progression of this disease.

  • Medication, usually in the form of eye drops, can help relieve pressure within the eye.
  • Recent advances in laser surgery make it possible to improve the underlying condition that contributes to elevated eye pressure. Open-angle glaucoma can be treated with ALT (Argon Laser Trabelculoplasty), and a peripheral iridotomy procedure can be performed to treat closed-angle glaucoma.
  • Most of the time, the efficiency of the drainage canals can be improved by treatment with the previous two methods. However, if these treatments are not effective, the most common surgical option, trabeculectomy, can be performed to alter the eye’s drainage system.