Glaucoma is not a single eye disease but is a collective term that is used to describe a broad range of eye diseases that can damage the optic nerve and cause loss of vision. Many patients believe that Glaucoma is simply due to a high pressure within the eye. While a high Intraocular pressure can be one cause of Glaucoma, and in fact is the most common cause of Glaucoma, a high IOP may not be the only cause of Glaucoma. There are a number of possible causes of Glaucoma. Regardless of the cause, the various types of Glaucoma share a common factor-if not diagnosed early, treated properly and controlled – will result in permanent vision loss.
Glaucoma is particularly worrisome because most serious eye problems usually produce some symptoms that make patients uncomfortable or disturb their vision. Unfortunately, Glaucoma can begin without any symptoms or obvious loss of vision. In this way it is quite insidious in onset, and if not diagnosed and treated early in its course, will lead to progressive, permanent, and unnoticed vision loss. This is what makes it essential to diagnose and treat Glaucoma as early in its course as possible through regular eye examinations.
Glaucoma is one of the leading causes of blindness for patients between the ages of 18-65 years of age. It is estimated that approximately 3 million people have Glaucoma, yet only half actually know that they have it. High Intraocular Pressure is one of the diagnostic signs that may indicate the presence of Glaucoma. Other studies estimate that between 3-6 million people in the United States have higher than normal Intraocular Pressure (IOP), without obvious clinical signs of damage to the optic nerve. Thus it is likely that there are another million people who may have Glaucoma, but have not yet been diagnosed because they do not have access to eye care or even Glaucoma screenings. Just in the United States, it is believed that there are approximately 100,000 patients who are legally blind from glaucoma. Fortunately, in the vast majority of cases, with early detection and diagnosis Glaucoma can be treated and controlled so that vision loss can be prevented.
Glaucoma is a very complex eye disease, and not simply an elevated Intraocular Pressure (IOP). Nonetheless, when detected early it can be successfully treated. The Eye Center in Denver provides comprehensive diagnostic testing and treatment for Glaucoma, as well as taking the time necessary to give each patient the personal education needed to fully understand their condition.
Denver, Highlands Ranch, Lone Tree, Parker, Conifer, Evergreen, Pine, Bailey, Aurora, Arvada, Wheat Ridge, Westminster, Commerce City, Englewood, Littleton, Sheridan, Cherry Hills Village, Northglenn, Broomfield and Greenwood Village. If you, a family member or friend, would like to schedule an eye examination for Glaucoma, please call The Eye Center in Denver, Colorado at 303-777-5455.