Cause of Glaucoma explained
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Speaking exclusively to Express.co.uk, Giles Edmonds stated “any changes in vision could be a sign”. Narrowing it down, can i take aspirin with diovan the eye expert identifies “misty and patchy vision” as one of the most subtle warning signs of the condition. “Glaucoma usually occurs when naturally occurring fluid inside the eye does not drain properly which results in a build-up of pressure,” he explained. “This can cause damage to the optic nerve, [which] carries information about what is being seen from the eye to the brain.”
Edmonds highlighted two types of glaucoma:
- Chronic glaucoma
- Acute glaucoma
Chronic glaucoma is the most common type of the condition, which may affect both eyes to varying degrees.
“With chronic glaucoma, the visual loss can initially be very subtle and occurs just beyond your central vision,” said Edmonds.
The vision loss than progressively moves “towards your central vision and outwards into the periphery”.
“Most patients will not be aware of this visual loss due to the way the eyes visual fields overlap, compensating for one another,” he said.
Acute glaucoma, on the other hand, “develops rapidly with a sudden, often painful build-up of pressure in the eye”.
This may be accompanied by blurred vision and haloes around lights.
A review conducted by Specsavers and the Royal National Institute of Blind People estimated that more than 700,000 people in the UK have glaucoma.
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Many people are unaware they have the condition, which is why Edmonds stressed that getting a regular eye check-up is the best form of defence.
Edmonds said: “Many people have missed their eye test due to the pandemic.”
Urging the nation to attend their appointments, or to make an appointment, Edmond shares how optimetrists can detect the disease at any stage.
“The optic nerve can be assessed in a variety of ways during your eye examination,” he said.
“One way is using a photograph taken with a retinal camera showing the detail of [your] eye health.”
Edmonds added that a “tonometer” test can measure the pressure inside of the eye and is great at identifying people who are at risk of glaucoma.
The painless eye pressure test also identifies those who already have the condition.
Another useful test is the “visual field test” which involves being “shown a sequence of light spots and being asked which ones you can see”.
“Any very subtle blind spots, or areas with reduced vision – which you will probably be unaware of – can be an indicator of the condition,” Edmonds said.
Glaucoma is predicted to rise by 44 percent in the next decade, but diagnosing the condition can make a difference.
“Any vision which has been lost to glaucoma can’t be recovered,” said Edmonds.
However, “with early diagnosis, careful monitoring and regular treatment, most people retain useful sight for life”.
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