This week is Glaucoma Awareness Week – an opportunity to get people talking about this often misunderstood common condition that can lead to visual field loss.
Glaucoma is a complicated disease. Most people experience no symptoms in the early stages and the only way to know if you have it is to have an eye examination. If it’s not treated, glaucoma can lead to irreversible sight loss, visual disability and even blindness.
Between 2015 and 2035, the number of people living with glaucoma in the UK is expected to increase by 44%. With an ageing population and modern technology making earlier detection possible, more of us will find ourselves or the ones we love affected by glaucoma.
You have at least a four-times higher risk of developing glaucoma if you have a close blood relative who has it. So, if you have glaucoma, you really need to be telling your relatives as they will need to book in for a regular eye examination.
Being diagnosed with glaucoma might be unexpected and frightening, particularly if you are living alone, but we are here to help you and give you the care, information, advice and support you need to feel confident in your glaucoma journey.
There are two main types of glaucoma: primary (attributed to things such as how you are built etc) and secondary (brought on as a consequence of something such as a major trauma). Different ethnicities have different prevalences.
Management of Glaucoma is based around reducing intra-ocular pressure (IOP). Its diagnosis involves assessing the optic nerve head, drainage angles and looking for change. There is often a misconception that if you have high IOP you will get glaucoma and that if you have ‘normal’ IOP you can’t but this is not always the case. Several different examinations will be needed to confirm how and why damage to the optic nerve has occurred.
All the optometrists at TK&S are trained and understand how to thoroughly assess for glaucoma using the wide range of tools at our disposal. Dr Keyur Patel has a Diploma in Glaucoma from the College of Optometrists and runs a specialist clinic within the practice.
The TK&S Glaucoma Clinic is able to provide hospital standard diagnostics and investigation for patients concerned or at risk from glaucoma.
This appointment includes;
- Comprehensive history
- Goldman Applanation Tonometry (gold standard for eye pressure measurement)
- Dilated Biomicroscope Evaluation of the Optic Nerve
- Threshold Visual Screen Testing
- Triton OCT imaging for analysis of nerve fibre layers
- Pentacam – for a complete overview of the anterior eye segment and assessing angles
Patients with ocular hypertension can be diagnosed and managed within this clinic.
If you, or a close family member, has been diagnosed with glaucoma then please get in touch to arrange an appointment at our specialist Glaucoma Clinic.