What is glaucoma?

Glaucoma is a disease that can threaten your vision and impact your daily life. It is the leading cause of blindness and if it goes undetected, it can cause permanent damage to your eyes.

Glaucoma is caused by too much pressure on your eye, which then squeezes the optical nerve. When there is damage to the optical nerve, it can lead to a degrading of your eyesight, which can eventually cause blindness if not treated correctly. There are subsets of glaucoma that can be present without any extra pressure and can be difficult to detect.

Having glaucoma may be daunting but having a diagnosis means that it can be treated. Even though there is no cure LondonOC is able to offer cutting edge detection and treatments with some of the most advanced glaucoma surgery in London.

Who is vulnerable and what are the symptoms?

While there are medical conditions and hereditary traits that can increase your chances of having this disease, this is a disease that can strike anybody so it’s important to get your eyes checked at least once a year and if you’re over the age of 40 then twice. Some people may be vulnerable to this condition due to:

  • Poor vision or other eye conditions
  • Over the age of 40
  • People with thin and sensitive corneas
  • Diabetes, high blood pressure or anaemia
  • Genetic vulnerability to glaucoma
  • Eye injury

What are the symptoms?

Remember – this condition is so dangerous because it rarely has symptoms. Some symptoms which may be associated with acute glaucoma can include:

  • Headaches
  • Red eyes
  • Tunnel vision
  • Dizziness
  • Blurry vision
  • Halo-rings in the line of sight
  • A vision that progressively worsens – initially in the peripheral vision, later centrally
  • Pain on and around the eye
  • Nausea and vomiting

Detecting and diagnosing

In recent years there have been advances in glaucoma detection, which means it can be treated earlier than ever and 95% of people who have glaucoma do not go blind. Many ophthalmologists will conduct a pressure test, but this will only detect the roughly 60% of glaucoma that is directly caused by pressure. At LondonOC, we recognise the importance of a comprehensive & correct diagnosis, and so we include 8 specialist examinations in our glaucoma check.

The LondonOC use the latest technology to monitor Glaucoma: We include applanation pressure check, dynamic gonioscopy, and stereoscopic funduscopy in all examinations, plus we offer:

Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT) and GDx Scans:
These are used to obtain clear scanned images of the Retinal and Optic nerves, so we can see in amazing detail the structures involved in order to monitor Glaucoma like never before! This allows our eye surgeons to measure the size of your nerve, and ensure that any abnormal change is detected quickly before any damage appears in your vision.

Ocular Blood flow measurements:
Latest research has shown clearly that patients with Glaucoma have reduced blood flow (oxygen) in the optic nerve, and we now have the technology to monitor this effectively.

Corneal Pachymetry (Thickness):
The thickness of the cornea has been shown to influence eye pressure readings, and Corneal Pachymetry takes account of this. As a result, the readings are more accurate and this ensures your Eye pressure (IOP) readings are always correct.

Ziess Humprey visual field tests:
The latest “Short Wave Analysis Perimetry” software (SWAP: yellow-blue light) allows Glaucoma to be detected up to 5 years earlier than was previously possible.

Read more about glaucoma here.

Don’t forget to read more about the treatments we offer here

This article is intended to inform and give insight but not treat, diagnose or replace the advice of a doctor. Always seek medical advice with any questions regarding a medical condition.