What Kinds of Glaucoma Are There?
Glaucoma comes in many forms, but here are a few of the most common varieties:
- Open-Angle Glaucoma: This is the most common form of the disease. Open-angle glaucoma typically has no symptoms until it causes permanent damage to your peripheral vision. This form of the disease is caused when your trabecular meshwork blocks your eyes drainage system, causing fluid to build up until the resulting pressure damages the optic nerve.
- Angle-Closure Glaucoma: This form of glaucoma occurs when the iris blocks the drainage angle and causes fluid to build up in your eye, increasing the pressure as a result. Angle-closure glaucoma can be chronic or acute. Acute angle-closure glaucoma is a medical emergency and must be dealt with immediately.
- Normal-Tension Glaucoma: Damage to the optic nerve from factors unrelated to pressure causes normal-tension glaucoma. This form of glaucoma may result from partially-blocked arteries and may also affect people whose optic nerves are more sensitive than normal.
Although a family history of glaucoma can increase your risk of the disease, it can affect anybody at any age. We screen for glaucoma during every comprehensive eye exam to provide peace of mind for all patients.
How Do I Know If I Have Glaucoma?
The early stages of glaucoma are extremely difficult to recognize without help, so an eye exam is often the only way to know whether or not you have it. Diagnosing glaucoma early can also make it easier for your eye doctor to help you manage it and slow down its effects.
However, some people with glaucoma experience the following symptoms before vision loss begins:
- Visible halos around light sources
- Frequent and painful headaches
- Acute nausea
- Blurry vision with no obvious cause
- Inexplicable redness near the eyes