According to specialists in Ophthalmology , glaucoma is a chronic disease caused by increased intraocular pressure. This elevation of the popular pressure can damage the optic nerve, and in severe cases, even lead to blindness.
Glaucoma: what it is and what causes it
Actually, it is not known why glaucoma occurs. It is considered to have a multifactorial origin that damage occurs at the level of the trabecular meshwork, a structure is at the angle of the eye and that is the one that drains the aqueous humor that we all have to maintain ocular tone.
This rise in ocular tension can affect basically damaging the optic nerve in two ways: by injuring the axons of the optic nerve or by producing a lack of irrigation of the optic nerve head.
When and how does glaucoma occur?
Glaucoma usually appears from 45-50 years. In some cases, there may be a family history, and the problem is that in the initial phases the patient does not notice anything, that is why it is dangerous.
When the patient begins to notice discomfort such as loss of visual acuity or visual field, glaucoma is usually quite advanced and the defects that we can find in the optic nerve or in the visual field are quite affected.
How does it look with glaucoma?
The idea that a patient with glaucoma sees as "through a shotgun cannon" is totally false. What really happens is that the patient has a blurred vision or absolute loss of vision some area of the visual field. This is very important in many aspects of daily activity, but especially in driving.
How glaucoma is detected
The diagnosis of glaucoma is based on several aspects. It is true that many patients have high eye strain, but not always glaucoma up the tension, there are patients with glaucoma who have normal eye strain.
Glaucoma is detected by a set of tests: evaluation of the visual field, optical coherence tomography, or pachymetry, that is, taking the thickness of the cornea. The sum of all these diagnostic data allows the specialist to establish the diagnosis of glaucoma.
Why is it important to make an early diagnosis?
The sooner the damage is detected, the smaller the consequences will be. What the patient should know is that when damage occurs in glaucoma, it is usually irreversible. Hence the importance of early diagnosis: the earlier we establish a treatment before we can stop the disease.
The treatment of glaucoma initially is usually a medical treatment. Today there are numerous eye drops that can be prescribed to patients depending on the characteristics of glaucoma they have.
When glaucoma does not respond to medical treatment by eye drops, there are other alternatives such as laser therapy. If there is no response to either of the above treatments, surgical treatment should be carried out.
At present, there are also various surgical alternatives: trabiculectomies, non-perforating clerectomy, valve devices, drainage devices ... Which will also be indicated by the specialist depending on the characteristics of the patient's eye and the type of glaucoma present.