Gulf Coast Eye Institute

Glaucoma

Regular Exams is Key

Over two million Americans are affected by glaucoma, and half of them do not realize it. Some ethnic groups and demographics are more susceptible to this disease than others. Mexican-Americans over the age of sixty are at great risk of having glaucoma. African Americans over the age of 40, those who have been diagnosed with diabetes, and those who have a family history of glaucoma also have an increased risk of having the disease.
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What is Glaucoma?

Glaucoma is a condition that causes fluid to build up in the eye to put pressure on the optic nerve. There are several different types of glaucoma and also different levels of severity. The most common type of the condition is called open-angle glaucoma. With this type of glaucoma, pressure builds up in the eye slowly and it cannot be felt. If the condition is not treated, symptoms may begin with blind spots or loss of peripheral vision. Central vision can be lost if glaucoma is not treated. Although there is not yet a cure for glaucoma, being diagnosed and treated as soon as possible can keep the condition from getting worse.

How likely are you to have Glaucoma?

Over two million Americans are affected by glaucoma, and half of them do not realize it. Some ethnic groups and demographics are more susceptible to this disease than others. Mexican-Americans over the age of sixty are at great risk of having glaucoma. African Americans over the age of 40, those who have been diagnosed with diabetes, and those who have a family history of glaucoma also have an increased risk of having the disease. Although these specific groups of people are more susceptible to the disease, it can affect anyone. It is important to have your eyes examined by an ophthalmologist often because diseases like glaucoma can be treated more successfully when they are discovered in their early phases.

How Glaucoma is Treated

If you have been diagnosed with glaucoma, you will meet with our doctors as they develop an aggressive treatment plan. This treatment plan will be organized by the Gulf Coast Eye Institute glaucoma team and will require routine visits in order to treat your condition.

The goal of glaucoma therapy at Gulf Coast Eye Institute is to preserve the patient’s current level of vision and to prevent further vision loss. Treatment can vary, depending on the type of glaucoma diagnosed, the degree to which glaucoma has progressed, the patient’s underlying risk factors, and other variables. In general, prescription medicines (eye-drops and oral medications), laser procedures, and operative procedures are all utilized as we take the necessary steps to protect and preserve your vision.

DID YOU KNOW? GLAUCOMA USUALLY DOES NOT CAUSE SYMPTOMS, SO MOST PEOPLE ARE UNAWARE THEY EVEN HAVE IT.

If you have been diagnosed with the disease of glaucoma, you will meet with our doctors as they structure an aggressive treatment plan. This treatment plan will be organized by the Gulf Coast Eye Institute glaucoma team and will require routine visits.

The goal of glaucoma therapy at Gulf Coast Eye Institute is to preserve the patient’s current level of vision and to prevent further vision loss. Treatment can vary, depending on the type of glaucoma diagnosed, the degree to which the glaucoma has progressed, the patient’s underlying risk factors and other variables. In general, prescription medicines (eye-drops and oral medications), laser procedures and operative procedures are all utilized in attempt to preserve vision.

Glaucoma is much more complex than most patients understand. For this reason, glaucoma subspecialist ophthalmologists train an additional one to two years beyond the three to four years of general ophthalmology residency training. It’s so important to choose a trusted and experienced doctor for your glaucoma management.

What Causes Glaucoma?

Glaucoma is caused by fluid build up inside the eye. This fluid puts pressure on the optic nerve. Eventually, the pressure becomes great enough to damage the nerve, preventing it from sending signals to the brain.

IT IS VERY IMPORTANT TO NOTE AS A RESIDENT OF THE HARLINGEN, MCALLEN AND THE RIO GRANDE VALLEY, MEXICAN-AMERICANS AGED 60+ ARE AT GREATER RISK OF GLAUCOMA THAN THE GENERAL POPULATION.

In addition, African Americans over the age of 40, individuals with diabetes and people with a family history of glaucoma face increased odds of having the condition. Even if you do not fall within these demographic groups, you should have a regular eye exam that includes a glaucoma screening, because this condition affects individuals of every nationality.

Could You Have Glaucoma?

Over two million Americans are affected by glaucoma, and half of them do not realize it.

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