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Home » Eye Care Services » Management of Ocular Diseases » Glaucoma Testing and Treatment

Glaucoma Testing and Treatment

How do you test for glaucoma?

Glaucoma is the generalized name for a group of eye diseases that damage the optic nerve of the eye, preventing the eye from sending accurate visual information to the brain.

Increased pressure inside the eye is often a key indicator of glaucoma, though not exclusively so. Only a comprehensive eye exam can reveal whether or not you have glaucoma.  Dr. Rippley, Dr. Nguyen and Dr. Porter can use a number of tests for eye pressure, but will, by default, check for signs of glaucoma as part of a detailed examination of the retina—the light sensitive area at the back of the eye responsible for processing images.

If there is any suspicion for glaucoma, additional tests can help aid the diagnosis.  Since glaucoma initially affects your peripheral vision, we may have you perform a visual field test.  This will inform us whether or not there are any areas of your vision that have been affected.  Also, an OCT test allows us to take a more detailed look at the nerve for any damage from glaucoma than with an Optomap image or dilation alone. Both of these tests will also help monitor progression, and allow us to better assess whether more aggressive treatment may be required.

Glaucoma Treatment

Depending on the severity of the disease, treatment for glaucoma can involve the use of medications, conventional (bladed) surgery, laser surgery or a combination of these treatments. Medicated eye drops aimed at lowering IOP are usually the first course of treatment to control glaucoma.
Because glaucoma is often painless, people may become careless about strict use of eye drops that can control eye pressure and help prevent permanent eye damage. In fact, non-compliance with a program of prescribed glaucoma medication is a major reason for blindness resulting from glaucoma.
If you find that the eye drops you are using for glaucoma are uncomfortable or inconvenient, never discontinue them without first consulting your eye doctor about a possible alternative therapy.
All glaucoma surgery procedures (whether laser or non-laser) are designed to accomplish one of two basic results: decrease the production of intraocular fluid or increase the outflow (drainage) of this same fluid. Occasionally, a procedure will accomplish both.
Currently the goal of glaucoma surgery and other glaucoma therapy is to reduce or stabilize intraocular pressure (IOP). When this goal is accomplished, damage to ocular structures – especially the optic nerve – may be prevented.

Learn More

Glaucoma can cause slight to severe vision loss, and is often discovered only after the disease is present—that’s why glaucoma testing is so important.

 

Special thanks to the EyeGlass Guide for informational material that aided in the creation of this website. Visit the EyeGlass Guide today!

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