Glaucoma: Prevention, Symptoms and Treatment Explained

  • Glaucoma is also known as the “ Silent Thief of Vision”
  • In India, approximately 11.9 million people are affected by glaucoma, with 8.9 million suffering from blindness.

Glaucoma is an eye disorder that frequently goes undiagnosed until irreversible vision loss occurs. It is known to cause silent and progressive damage to the optic nerve, with few noticeable symptoms. Glaucoma is a major public health concern in India, where an estimated 12 million individuals suffer from the ailment.

According to Indian data, roughly 11.9 million individuals have glaucoma, with 8.9 million suffering from blindness. Glaucoma accounts for 12.8% of blindness in the country. Despite its prevalence, many people are not aware of the causes and symptoms of glaucoma, resulting in a delayed diagnosis and identification at severe stages. 

Symptoms Of Glaucoma

Glaucoma symptoms vary according to the kind and stage of the disease. The most prevalent type of glaucoma, open-angle glaucoma, causes modest symptoms such as gradual vision loss and peripheral vision problems. Closed-angle glaucoma, on the other hand, can result in sudden vision abnormalities such as fuzzy vision, halos around lights, and impaired night vision. Immediate treatment is required because if left untreated, it can lead to total and permanent blindness. 

Treatment for Glaucoma 

The initial step in glaucoma treatment is to reduce intraocular pressure (IOP) to prevent additional damage to the visual nerve. Prescription eye drops, oral drugs, laser surgery such as trabeculectomy, or a combination of these procedures are all alternatives for treatment. The emergence of innovative therapeutics in the ophthalmology field, such as the iStent inject W, has revolutionised glaucoma management via micro-invasive glaucoma surgery (MIGS). The severity and progression of the condition determine the course of treatment, and regular check-ups are required to monitor its effectiveness.

Prevention of Glaucoma

While there is no way to completely prevent glaucoma, some risk factors can raise the likelihood of having the disease. These include age, nearsightedness, family history, eye injury, specific eye procedures, and medical disorders including diabetes and high blood pressure. It is critical to get annual eye exams with an ophthalmologist to stop the progression at an early stage. Glaucoma can be avoided with early identification, diagnosis, and treatment. 

According to Dr Mithun M Pai, Senior Consultant-Glaucoma and Cataract, Nethradhama Super Speciality Eye Hospital, glaucoma awareness is critical for rapid early diagnosis and appropriate treatment, which are vital in delaying the progression of glaucoma. Educating individuals about the illness and its risk factors can help avoid blindness. It will make people more prepared to adopt preventive measures and seek eye treatment from ophthalmologists to halt the disease’s progression.

Source : English Jagran

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