The eye is filled with a watery fluid which nourishes the structures in the eye. Proper drainage allows eye pressures to be at normal levels. However, in many types of glaucoma, the eye drainage system does not work properly and the fluid builds up. Persistent high pressure in the eye can damage the delicate nerves in the retina, leading to irreversible vision loss.
This can be halted by treatments which lower the intra-ocular pressure, such as eye drops, LASER, or surgery. There are several surgical options to treat glaucoma, and they each involve creating a new drain for fluid inside the eye to be redirected out of the eye to a reservoir where it gets reabsorbed by the body. Your doctor will discuss which type of surgery would provide the best control for your type of glaucoma.
Kaz Vision & Laser Center has the latest diagnostic equipment technology and years of experience in effectively treating all forms of glaucoma. Call 757-875-7700 to make an appointment today.
Types of Glaucoma
Open-angle glaucoma is the most common form of the disease. Most people who develop open-angle glaucoma don’t experience any noticeable symptoms at first. Glaucoma is essentially the build-up of fluid pressure on the eye that ends up damaging the optic nerve. It happens so slowly that you may lose vision before you're even aware of a problem. As the disease progresses, blind spots develop in your peripheral (side) vision at which point there is serious injury to the eye. That’s why it’s critical to have regular eye exams, so that your eye doctor can detect problems early on.
Angle-closure glaucoma, also called closed-angle glaucoma, has the same result. The difference is angle-closure causes the iris to bulge outward to affect the drainage angle formed by it and the cornea. As a result, fluid doesn't circulate and pressure on the eye increases.
Angle-closure glaucoma can happen suddenly or gradually. A medical emergency situation is typical with sudden acute angle-closure glaucoma.
This is a case where the optic nerve becomes damaged without the associated abnormal fluid build-up within the eye. The causes for this remain generally unknown but seem linked to genetics, limited blood flow or a hyper-sensitive optic nerve.
Symptoms of Glaucoma
Most common forms of glaucoma display gradual degradation symptoms which is completely different from Acute angle-closure glaucoma which comes on suddenly and should be considered a medical emergency to avoid permanent loss of sight.
Symptoms of Open-angle Glaucoma, Chronic Angle-closure Glaucoma & Normal-tension Glaucoma:
- Gradual loss of peripheral vision, usually in both eyes;
- Tunnel vision in the advanced stages.
Symptoms of Acute Angle-closure Glaucoma:
- Severe eye pain
- Nausea and vomiting (accompanying the severe eye pain)
- Sudden onset of visual disturbance, often in low light
- Blurred vision
- Halos around lights
- Reddening of the eye