What to Know About Glaucoma Treatment
An estimate noted on the Glaucoma Research Foundation's site revealed that over four million Americans suffer from glaucoma, but only half of them are aware they have it. Getting your eyes examined by an eye care expert like one of the optometry specialists in New Jersey associated with the Eyes First Vision Center can diagnose the problem and initiate a vision treatment regimen to help prevent further vision loss or even total blindness.
Complications from Glaucoma
Glaucoma doesn't always cause symptoms. However, it's inevitable that vision loss will occur over time. In fact, approximately 120,000 people in the United States are blind from glaucoma. This accounts for nine to 12 percent of all U.S. cases of blindness. The World Health Organization (WHO) declares glaucoma as the second leading cause of blindness in the world. Although the optometrists of Eyes First Vision Centers, serving patients in cities like Bricktown, Matawan, Red Bank, Sea Girt, Hazlet, Middletown, Eatontown, Manchester and Toms River, can't prevent all cases of blindness caused by glaucoma in the world, they do help patients in New Jersey to prevent blindness.
Glaucoma Prevention Treatments
There's isn't a cure for glaucoma, although optometry doctors can stop or slow down the damage the condition causes to the optic nerve. Getting a regular vision exam helps to catch glaucoma early. The earlier the condition is detected and treated the better the prognosis.
The first line of treatment for this eye issue is prescription eye drops. They're designed to decrease pressure in the eye. They either improve fluid drainage or decrease the amount of fluid produced by the eye. Glaucoma treatment often starts with prescription eye drops. These can help decrease eye pressure by improving how fluid drains from your eye or by decreasing the amount of fluid your eye makes. Prostaglandins increase the outflow of fluid in the eye and reduce pressure in the eye. Beta blockers reduce how much fluid is in the eye by lowering the amount of pressure in the eye. Alpha-adrenergic agonists reduce the production of aqueous humor while increasing the output of fluid from the eyes. Although rarely used for glaucoma, carbonic anhydrase inhibitors may reduce the amount fluid produced in the eye. Miotic or cholinergic agents increase the outflow of fluid from the eye.
Oral medications can help decrease eye pressure if eye drops aren't enough. Laser therapy may be an option for people who have open-angle glaucoma. The optometrist will use a laser beam to open channels that are clogged within the trabecular meshwork. For instance, the optometric surgery specialist may conduct a filtering surgery, a laser procedure that creates an opening in the white of the affected eye. During this procedure, part of the trabecular meshwork may be removed. The eye doctor may insert small drainage tubes into the eye. Electrocautery is a minimally invasive procedure used to remove the trabecular meshwork. It utilizes an electrocautery device known as a Trabectome. Researchers are trying to find new procedures and treatments to help those with glaucoma preserve as much of their vision as possible. The optometrists at Eyes First Vision Centers are always looking for the most innovative procedures to help their patients.
To learn more about glaucoma treatments or to schedule an appointment to discuss your glaucoma treatment options, contact us at Eyes First Vision Centers, serving various Jersey cities such as Eatontown and Manahawkin, at 866-393-7347.