Glaucoma

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Lisa M. Nath, MD, LLC

Pittsburgh’s Favorite Personalized Eye Care Center, located in Bellevue, PA!

Glaucoma is one of the major causes of vision loss worldwide. It is sometimes called the "silent blinder" because many people are unaware that they have the disease. Glaucoma is a condition of increased pressure within the eyeball, causing gradual loss of sight. It can occur in all age groups, including infants, but it is most common in elderly people. If you have glaucoma, you may experience difficulties with mobility, driving, and social Interactions. The loss of peripheral vision, depth perception, and contrast sensitivity associated with glaucoma can all have a major effect on your life.

Dr. Lisa Nath, MD and the team of dedicated and friendly eye care professionals in our Bellevue, PA. office offer a wide array of services from routine eye exams to the treatment of the most complex vision and eye-related problems. Our patients receive state-of-the-art diagnosis and treatment using advanced equipment such as Optical Coherence Tomography, which allows us to see highly detailed images of your eyes. We are open to serve you from 8:00 am to 4:30 pm from Monday to Thursday and 8:00 am to 4:00 pm every Friday. Please feel free to call us at 412-734-5022 or request an appointment online. We are always happy to help!

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FAQs on Glaucoma:

What are the Symptoms of Glaucoma?

Early symptoms are headaches and "tired eyes". As time progresses, these symptoms increase and can be accompanied by blurred vision, floaters, or sensitivity to light. Late-stage manifestation of glaucoma can cause irreversible optic nerve and retinal damage, resulting in an ever-decreasing field of vision and, eventually, leading to a loss of central vision.

 

Who’s at Risk of Developing Glaucoma?

Increasing eye pressure is the greatest risk factor linked with glaucoma. In addition to rising with age - especially in patients living with heart problems or chronic illnesses - eye pressure can be affected and changed by traumatic injuries, such as those sustained in car crashes and falls.

Additional risk factors include having a family history of the disease, having high blood pressure, being aged 30 years or older, and being diagnosed with nearsightedness or diabetes. Women are also at a greater risk of developing the disease than men.

 

What is the Difference Between Open and Closed-Angle Glaucoma?

Open-angle glaucoma is the most common form of the disease. It usually occurs in both eyes, progresses slowly, and has no obvious symptoms in most patients until the later stages of the disease, when patients lose their central vision. In these cases, the eye’s drainage canals somehow become blocked. As a result, naturally occuring fluids in the eye cannot drain, causing a buildup and an increase in pressure within the eye. Open-angle glaucoma runs in families and is usually treated with eye drops to lower the pressure.

On the other hand, closed-angle glaucoma - also known as acute glaucoma or narrow angle glaucoma - is a rarer form of the disease. In these cases, eye pressure usually rises very quickly. This happens when the drainage canals of the eye suddenly close, usually due to their narrow nature. Symptoms of angle-closure glaucoma may include headaches, eye pain, nausea, rainbows around lights at night, and very blurred vision. This type of glaucoma is a true emergency and requires prompt care.

 

How Important are Regular Eye Exams in Diagnosing Glaucoma?

Glaucoma symptoms are not likely to develop until the disease has advanced to some degree. In order to avoid the irreversible visual changes caused by this disease, it is important to have your eyes examined for glaucoma by an eye doctor on a regular basis, especially if you carry some of the known risk factors.

In addition to looking for changes in vision during a standard eye exam, eye doctors can test your eye pressure and corneal thickness to look for signs of glaucoma.

 

How Would I Know If I Have Glaucoma?

Since the progression of the condition is slow, you might not be able to know until the later stages of the disease develop. Diagnosis of glaucoma often relies on the professional examination of the visual field. That is why we recommend all patients go through a comprehensive eye examination (CEE) on a regular basis.

 

What is the Treatment for Glaucoma?

The American Academy of Ophthalmology recommends that an initial argon laser trabeculoplasty or an incisional surgery may be appropriate to treat glaucoma. Some cases may also require eye drops to control the pressure within your eye.

If you are diagnosed with glaucoma or have been afflicted with it for a while, it is critical to undergo a comprehensive eye exam to check the health of your eye. Dr. Lisa Nath, MD and her team of dedicated eye care professionals in Bellevue, PA. would be more than happy to help you manage this condition and take preventive measures if you are on an early onset. Call our office at 412-734-5022 or request an appointment online to effortlessly schedule a convenient time to get your eye checked for glaucoma.

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