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Answers to Your Frequently Asked Questions About Glaucoma

The team at Eye  1st Vision Center often gets questions from our patients about the malady known as glaucoma. If glaucoma is a concern for you or a member of your family, you will be glad to know that our Sandy Spring optometrists have treated many patients with this condition and we welcome the chance to provide service to you as well.  Before you come in for a consultation, we would like to take a moment and answer some of our patients’ most frequently asked questions about glaucoma and glaucoma treatment.

diagram of normal eye vs eye with glaucoma showing increased pressure and drainage canal blocked

What Are the Causes of Glaucoma?

Glaucoma happens when fluid pressure grows high inside your eye. Too much pressure leads to optic nerve damage. Untreated glaucoma can result in total blindness.

Scientists have determined that pressure buildup occurs when there is a problem circulating fluid in the front area of the eyeball. If the channel supplying the fluid (known as aqueous humor) is blocked, pressure increases. While still not known, the problem could be genetic, occurring in successive generations of a family.

Glaucoma can also happen when a patient has blocked blood vessels, a chemical injury, inflammation or blunt force trauma.

Who Is Typically Affected by Glaucoma?

In general, glaucoma affects people aged 40 and up. However, infants and younger adults can wind up with glaucoma. People are more likely to contract glaucoma if they are of African-American, Hispanic, Inuit, Irish, Japanese, Russian or Scandinavian ancestry. 

You are more likely to be at risk if you have diabetes, vision problems or a family history of this disease. Steroid medications like prednisone can lead to glaucoma.

What Are Symptoms and Signs of Glaucoma?

Unfortunately, people typically do not experience any symptoms in the beginning. Initially, you may notice a decrease in your peripheral (side) vision. Signs and symptoms to be aware of include:

  • Hazy looking eyes
  • Loss of vision
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Pain in the eyes
  • Redness in the eyes
  • Seeing halos around lights
  • Tunnel vision

If you experience side effects not listed here but think they might be related to glaucoma, do not hesitate in reaching out to our staff to ask about your concerns.

How Can Our Optometrist Diagnose, Treat and Manage Glaucoma?

Our optometrist will conduct an exam before making a customized plan of treatment. We conduct standard optometry tests to diagnosis glaucoma (visual test, eye test and tonometry test to check eye pressure). 

Treatment varies according to each patient. Options include eye drops, laser surgery or microsurgery. Only after your exam can the eye doctor tell you what options would be best for you, including glaucoma surgery. 

Contact our Sandy Springs Optometrist for More Information About Glaucoma

If you suspect that you might have glaucoma, it’s imperative that you visit an eye doctor as soon as possible. We know that our patients are busy with duties at work and home and we will do our best to arrange an appointment that is convenient for your schedule. If you have any questions or concerns about diagnosing and treating glaucoma, please contact our optometrists in Sandy Springs. Call Eye  1st Vision Center at 404-252-1702.