Article provided by: Coastal Eye Institute
Schedule an appointment at the Lakewood Ranch Glaucoma Center for early detection of Glaucoma, or for treatment options available. If your eye doctor has referred you to a specialist, call Coastal Eye at 941-748-1818.
Glaucoma cannot be cured at the present time, however in most cases it can be successfully controlled. They key to preservation of vision involved both early diagnosis and treatment with regular care. Glaucoma usually begins without any symptoms, which is why it is often called a silent disease, making it necessary to test for it on a regular basis. Annual eye exams help detect Glaucoma in its earliest forms.
You should be checked for Glaucoma if you: have a family history of Glaucoma, are 35 years or older, are African-American, have a history of severe eye inflammation or infection, have a history of eye trauma, have had previous eye surgery, have arthritis, have used steroids, or have diabetes.
Glaucoma specialists say that there are three pieces to the Glaucoma puzzle:
- Eye Pressure is checked frequently. Maintaining pressure at the normal level is a primary goal of treatment.
- Visual Field Tests are performed once or twice yearly. These very important tests evaluate any peripheral visual field loss caused by glaucoma.
- Optic Nerve - Your doctor will evaluate the health of your optic nerve through annual dilated eye exams, and Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT) testing. Optic Nerve Photos will also help to monitor any optic nerve damage.
Many patients come to the Lakewood Ranch Glaucoma Center with questions about Glaucoma and what it is. Glaucoma affects the optic nerve found at the back of the eye. In Glaucoma, the pressure inside the eyeball is high enough to cause damage to the optic nerve. Just like high blood pressure, patients do not feel the pressure in the eye. Visual impairment begins in the periphery and progresses slowly. As it does, more nerve cells are damaged and the field of vision narrows. Left untreated, Glaucoma can lead to complete blindness.
Treatment of Glaucoma involves lowering the pressure in the eye to a level that no longer causes damage. The lakewood Ranch Glaucoma Institute accomplishes this with the use of medicine, laser or surgery, or in some cases, a combination of all of these.
For open angle Glaucoma, medicine can often control the profession by means of eye drops, which are very effective and can easily be integrated into the patient’s daily routine.
Laser surgery is also used to treat Glaucoma and decrease the dependence of the patient on eye drops. There are two types of laser surgery that is currently available at Coastal Eye: Selective Laser Trabeculoplasty and Peripheral Laser Iridotomy.
Glaucoma surgery may be required in some cases when preservation of vision depends on the surgical procedure. At the Lakewood Ranch Glaucoma Institute, there are three surgical options available for Glaucoma.
If you would like to schedule an appointment at the Lakewood Ranch Institute, call Coastal Eye at 941-748-1818 and speak with one of their fellowship-trained Glaucoma specialists to see which procedure will work best for you.