Getting a regular vision exam isn't just about making sure your eyeglasses prescription is accurate. It is about making sure your eyes are healthy. One of the eye conditions that your eye doctor will check for during a comprehensive exam is glaucoma. At Chapel Hills Vision Clinic, we have years of experience identifying glaucoma and providing effective treatment.
What is Glaucoma?
Glaucoma encompasses many different eye conditions caused by damage to the optic nerve. In most cases, a malfunctioning drainage system leads to excess eye pressure buildup. The majority of the cases are open-angle glaucoma, which has a very slow and gradual onset. The fluid is still draining, but slower than it should be. Most people have little to no idea that anything is wrong before their optometrist confirms the diagnosis.
The other form of glaucoma is angle-closure glaucoma. When experiencing angle-closure glaucoma, it is far more obvious that something is wrong. It has a rapid onset, which can start as eye pain and nausea and very quickly turn to sight loss. With this type of glaucoma, fluid drainage is blocked entirely, causing a rapid spike in eye pressure. It is important to receive immediate emergency medical attention if you believe you are experiencing angle-closure glaucoma.
Symptoms and Treatment of Glaucoma
If you have experienced some level of sight loss from glaucoma, there is a good chance that vision loss will be permanent. That is why it is important not to hesitate to seek medical attention when experiencing the following symptoms:
- Sudden blurry vision
- Intense and excruciating eye pain accompanied by redness
- Nausea or vomiting
- Headache centered near the eyes or forehead
- Seeing colored light rings (known as halos) in your line of vision.
In most cases, early detection means that your treatment options will be less invasive than if you suffer from a more advanced case. Early treatment is usually centered around administering eye drops, while more advanced cases may involve surgical assistance in draining fluid from the eye to reduce pressure and less optic nerve damage. Depending on your specific case, help in draining may come from:
- A laser trabeculoplasty, which is a laser used to open a drainage system
- A trabeculectomy, which is an incision-based surgery that removes part of the eye's drainage system
- The insertion of drainage tubes
Glaucoma Treatment in Colorado Springs
For more information on how we address glaucoma and the associated vision loss or to schedule a vision exam with our optometrist, call Chapel Hills Vision Clinic today at (719) 599-5083.