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Glaucoma

Glaucoma is a group of eye diseases that gradually cause the decrease in eyesight without warning. Vision loss is caused by damage to the optic nerve. Experts estimate that half of the people affected by glaucoma may not know they have it. Although IOP(intraocular pressure) is clearly a risk factor of optic nerve damage, other factors must also be involved because even people with "normal" levels of pressure can experience vision loss from glaucoma.

There is no cure for primary open angle glaucoma-yet. However, medication or surgery can slow or prevent further vision loss. The appropriate treatment depends upon the type of glaucoma among other factors. Early detection is vital to stopping the progress of the disease.

Are You at Risk For Glaucoma?

  1. Everyone is at risk for glaucoma. However, certain groups are at higher risk than others People age over 60 are six times more likely to get glaucoma.
  2. Family members with glaucoma increases risk of glaucoma four to nine times.
  3. Asians People of Asian descent appear to be at some risk for angle closure glaucoma.
  4. Steroid Users. 40% increase in the incidence of ocular hypertension and open angle glaucoma in adults who require approximately 14 to 35 puffs of steroid inhaler to control severe asthma.
  5. History of eye injury. It is important to have your eyes examined regularly. Anyone with high risk factors, should be tested every year or two after age 35.

Tests for Glaucoma available at Thai eye center

Tonometry

Tonometry

The tonometry test measures the inner pressure of the eye. Your intraocular eye pressure (IOP) is important to determining your risk for glaucoma. If you have high IOP, careful management of your eye pressure with medications can help prevent vision loss.

Ophthalmoscopy

Ophthalmoscopy is used to examine the inside of the eye, especially the optic nerve. This helps the doctor look at the shape and color of the optic nerve.

Visual Field Test

Visual field test

During this test, you will be asked to look straight ahead and then indicate when a moving light passes your peripheral (or side) vision. This helps draw a "map" of your vision.

 

Optical Coherence Tomography

Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT)

Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT) is new technique of optic nerve image scanning. The OCT machine can create a contour map of the optic nerve, optic cup and measure the retinal nerve fiber thickness. This machine can detect loss of optic nerve fibers.

 

Treatment at Thai Eye Center

Eyedrops

Glaucoma treatment often starts with medicated eyedrops. Be sure to use the drops exactly as prescribed and follow up regularly as assigned.

Oral medications

If eyedrops alone don't bring your eye pressure down to the desired level, your doctor may also prescribe an oral medication. Doctors commonly prescribe carbonic anhydrase inhibitors, such as acetazolamide (Diamox), for glaucoma. Take these pills with meals to reduce side effects. Add bananas and apple juice to your diet to minimize the potassium loss caused by these medications.

Laser Surgery

Laser surgery.

In the last couple of decades, a procedure called trabeculoplasty. This is an office procedure lasting 10 to 20 minutes, and you can usually resume normal activities.

Laser iriotomy

Laser iriotomy is used to prevent and treat acute angle closure glaucoma in people who have narrow angle.

Filtering surgery.

If eyedrops and laser surgery aren't effective in controlling your eye pressure, you may need an operation called a filtering procedure or trabeculotomy.