Millions of Americans suffer from glaucoma, a disease affecting the optic nerve. Glaucoma, if left untreated, may lead to the loss of peripheral vision or even permanent blindness. Empowering yourself to understand the disease’s causes and risk factors may potentially rescue your sight. At Fishman & Sheridan eyeCare Specialists, we stress that pursuing early diagnosis and prompt treatment is critical.
Our team of ophthalmologists wants to make you aware of the causes of glaucoma at our Leesburg,Eustis, and Clermont practice locations, where we conduct comprehensive eye exams to detect or rule out the disease. For those patients who are diagnosed with glaucoma, we provide treatment in the forms of medication and glaucoma surgery.
About the Causes of Glaucoma
The types of glaucoma include open-angle (the more common form) and closed-angle (the rarer form). Generally, the disease is caused by increasing intraocular pressure, or when fluid pressure builds up inside of the eye. This results in damage to the optic nerve, which is your means of transmitting messages from the retina to the brain.
Who Is at Risk for the Causes of Glaucoma?
- People with high pressure inside the eye
- People over the age of 60
- People with a history of glaucoma
- People with prior eye injuries or severe infections
- People with poor vision
- People with diabetes
Knowing if you are particularly vulnerable to developing glaucoma may prompt you to schedule more frequent checkups, or shed light on a previously diagnosed condition. Hopefully, this will be the first step to preventing vision loss caused by the disease.
Learn More about the Causes of Glaucoma
If you would like to discuss the causes of glaucoma in detail with one of our experienced surgeons, contact us in Leesburg, Eustis, and Clermont. The staff at Fishman & Sheridan eyeCare Specialists of Lake County, Florida is ready to help you!
Glaucoma causes damage to the optic nerve, eventually leading to total vision loss. Typically, glaucoma is caused by a buildup of pressure inside your eye. At Fishman & Sheridan eyeCare Specialists, we offer comprehensive care using the latest diagnostic tests and devices. By providing you with a detailed, personalized exam, we can identify and treat glaucoma symptoms at our state-of-the-art Clermont office. Although there is no cure for glaucoma, with early diagnosis and treatment, your symptoms can be controlled. Contact Fishman & Sheridan eyeCare Specialists today to schedule your exam at one of our three convenient locations.
Glaucoma: The Basics
Glaucoma can be primary, meaning it arises on its own, or it may be secondary, stemming from an eye injury or another condition. There are two primary types of glaucoma:
- Open angle: This is the most common type of glaucoma. The drainage channel, located between the iris and the cornea, remains open, but fluid is not able to leave your eye quickly enough.
- Closed angle: This type of glaucoma occurs suddenly when the iris changes shape and blocks the drainage channel in the eye. If you suffer from this type of glaucoma, you should seek emergency medical treatment immediately.
There are several other, rarer types of glaucoma, including low-tension, congenital, and neovascular glaucoma. Our doctors are fully equipped to diagnose and treat even very rare types of the disease.
Glaucoma is a common disorder, affecting more than 3 million people in the United States alone. Unfortunately, you may be unaware that you have open-angle glaucoma, since symptoms do not typically appear until the disease has progressed. The most common symptom of open-angle glaucoma is a gradual and progressive loss of sight, starting with the peripheral vision. You may also see halos or have slightly red eyes. Closed-angle glaucoma comes on suddenly and can have severe symptoms, including eye pain, sudden vision changes, blurred vision, headaches, nausea, and vomiting.
Complete Glaucoma Testing
Closed-angle glaucoma is typically easy to diagnose, since the symptoms are so sudden and distinct. However, open-angle glaucoma can be difficult to detect without comprehensive eye exams. At Fishman & Sheridan eyeCare Specialists, we offer a full regimen of glaucoma tests, including:
- Drainage angle test: Your doctor will numb your eye and use a special contact lens that allows him to see inside your eye from different angles. During this test, he can check to see if the drainage channel is narrowed, which can increase your risk for sudden onset glaucoma.
- Visual field test: Your ophthalmologist will cover one eye, and shine lights in a random pattern. You will push a button every time you see a light. In this way, the doctor can create a digital map of your visual field, and he can detect areas where your eyesight is compromised.
- Optic nerve studies: Using special imaging systems and visual tools, your doctor can look inside your eye to examine the health of the optic nerve. He can look for physical damage or for an unusual pale color, which could indicate intraocular pressure. He can also take pictures of the nerve to monitor ongoing ocular health.
- Intraocular pressure tests: After numbing your eye with drops, your ophthalmologist can measure the inner pressure of your eye by calculating the firmness of the outer surface.
With careful, personalized diagnosis, we can determine the optimal treatment to control your symptoms and protect your vision.
Schedule Your Glaucoma Screening
Because it can be difficult to detect the early signs of glaucoma, it is important to undergo routine eye exams, especially if you are over 60, or if you have a history of eye disorders. Be proactive about your ocular health, and schedule your appointment at Fishman & Sheridan eyeCare Specialists today.
Glaucoma, a group of eye diseases that cause damage to the optic nerve, is the world’s second leading cause of blindness. While there is no cure for the condition, with early diagnosis and proper care, your ophthalmologist can control your symptoms and prevent further vision loss. At Fishman & Sheridan eyeCare Specialists, we offer a range of non-surgical and surgical glaucoma treatment options for our patients in Clermont and the surrounding areas. We take a conservative approach to eye care, and we will always start with moderate treatment before recommending surgery. Contact us today to learn more about glaucoma care.
Glaucoma: The Basics
Usually, glaucoma results from a buildup of pressure inside the eye. In open-angle glaucoma, the most common form of the disease, the drainage channel remains open, but fluid cannot drain quickly enough. Closed-angle glaucoma develops rapidly when the iris changes shape and blocks the drainage channel. If you suffer from this type of glaucoma, you should seek emergency medical treatment. The goal for both open- and closed-angle glaucoma treatment is the same. Your doctor will alleviate the pressure inside your eye by stimulating more rapid fluid removal or by opening up the drainage channel.
Non-Surgical and Laser Treatment
When you visit Fishman & Sheridan eyeCare Specialists, our doctors will provide personalized treatment to target your specific symptoms. When treating open-angle glaucoma, we will begin with non-surgical care, and we will recommend minimally invasive laser procedures before suggesting more complex surgical options. Our non-invasive treatment options include:
- Eye drops: Medicated eye drops will typically be your ophthalmologist’s first recommendation. You will apply these drops once or twice a day, and they will slow the production of aqueous fluid, thereby reducing intraocular pressure.
- Argon Laser Trabeculoplasty (ALT): If eye drops do not provide sufficient relief, your doctor may recommend this laser procedure. He will use a surgical laser to open up a narrowed or closed drainage channel. Typically, you can only undergo ALT twice.
- Selective Laser Trabeculoplasty (SLT): Like ALT, SLT opens the drainage channel in your eye. SLT uses an advanced laser to open the trebecular meshwork and stimulate drainage from the eye. This laser is highly precise and allows your doctor to target very specific cells, so you can usually undergo SLT multiple times.
- Peripheral Iridotomy: If you suffer from closed-angle glaucoma, this treatment uses a laser to remove of the part of your iris that is blocking the drainage channel. Peripheral iridotomy can also be used as a preventative treatment if you are at risk for closed-angle glaucoma.
Advanced Surgical Options
If medication and laser therapy do not provide sufficient relief for your glaucoma, we also offer several highly effective surgical treatments, including:
- Stents: Also called “shunts” or “glaucoma implant tubes,” your doctor will surgically implant these microscopic drainage tubes in your eye, creating a new exit channel for intraocular fluid.
- Trabeculectomy: During this treatment, your doctor will remove a piece of tissue from the drainage channel (or the trabecular meshwork), thereby creating a way for fluid to drain out of your eye. The opening will be covered with tissue from the sclera, or the white part of your eye.
Schedule Your Consultation
If you suffer from glaucoma, it is important to seek treatment as soon as possible. With early diagnosis and care, we can control your symptoms and prevent further vision loss. To schedule your appointment and find out which treatment option may be right for you, contact Fishman & Sheridan eyeCare Specialists today.