January Is Glaucoma Awareness Month

Glaucoma, also known as the “silent sight stealer”, is a potentially blinding disease, often with no symptoms in early stages. If undetected, and the patient experiences vision loss, the damage is permanent. There are currently more than 2.7 million people in the U.S., and over 60 million worldwide, with glaucoma, the leading cause of preventable blindness.

Who is at risk?

While glaucoma can affect anyone, there are certain factors that may put you at more risk for developing glaucoma. For example, if you are over the age of 65, or are African-American, Hispanic, have a family history of glaucoma, are severely nearsighted or have diabetes, you are at particularly high risk.

What is glaucoma?

Glaucoma is the second leading cause of blindness and is an eye disease that can gradually steal sight without much warning. In fact, the most common form of glaucoma virtually has no symptoms until vision loss has begun. Glaucoma causes an increase in eye pressure, which will eventually damage the optic nerve, causing vision damage and loss.

Regular eye examinations are important

Glaucoma can be easily detected in the early stages with an eye examination. Routine eye exams are especially critical for patients who are at higher risk for glaucoma.

Treatment options for glaucoma have changed dramatically over the past several years, offering you a wide variety of possible options.  One of these options is the iStent, which both Dr. Michael Vrabec and Dr. Douglas Salm recommend to patients frequently.  The iStent is a device implanted in your eye during cataract surgery that can help control eye pressure.

Early detection is vital in preventing vision loss from glaucoma—schedule your appointment for an annual eye examination today!