Glaucoma is a leading cause of blindness both in the United States and worldwide. The disease is largely asymptomatic until the final stages, and many patients unfortunately do not know they have glaucoma until it is too late. Fortunately for most patients, early diagnosis and treatment can significantly help slow down the disease.
The risk for developing glaucoma is higher if one or more of the following apply:
- 40 years old or older
- Family history of glaucoma
- Hispanic, African-American, Caribbean, Asian, or Indian-American ancestry
- History of eye or head trauma, diabetes, chronic steroid use, near-sightedness, or farsightedness
If you have any of these risk factors, a routine annual glaucoma screening by a fellowship trained glaucoma specialist is particularly important.
At Dallas Eye MD, Dr. Joseph performs comprehensive glaucoma evaluations, runs any necessary diagnostic tests, and, if needed, tailors a treatment based on the specific type of glaucoma and severity. With thorough and routine monitoring, most patients will go on to live with good vision for the rest of their lives!
The goal of glaucoma treatment is to reduce the pressure in the eye, and there are several medications to help achieve this goal. The various eye drops and pills available in glaucoma treatment generally work by two different mechanisms:
- Increasing the fluid outflow from the eye, or
- Decreasing the fluid inflow into the eye
Many factors determine which medications (or combination of medications) is best for a patient. A fellowship trained glaucoma specialist is uniquely trained to find the optimal treatment strategy for each individual patient and to maximize a patient’s chances of maintaining good vision.