Treating primary open angle glaucoma
The aim of treating POAG is reduce the pressure within the eye to a level at which no further damage occurs to the optic nerve.
Treatment is usually by means of eye drops.These can work to reduce the amount of fluid being produced by the eye,or improve drainage from the eye or both.
There have been major advances in medical (eye drop) treatment in recent years, and the newer drops are far more effective and have fewer side effects than those which were previously available. If the eye drops do not provide a sufficient pressure lowering effect, laser or surgical treatments are available.
Normal Tension Glaucoma(also called Normal Pressure Glaucoma)
Some people develop glaucoma with a normal eye pressure (this is called normal tension or low tension glaucoma). It is believed that poor blood flow to the eye may contribute to the development of the optic nerve damage . In these people, pressure-lowering drops are still the first choice of treatment, with a view to reducing the eye pressure to a level at which further damage to the optic nerve is prevented. However, the eye doctor may want to ensure that the blood pressure is not too low and may review blood pressure treatment,if it is being taken.
Treating Primary angle closure glaucoma
Acute angle closure is initially treated with drops and an intravenous injection to lower the eye pressure. Once the pressure is lowered, a laser (Iridotomy – laser spots are applied to make a small hole through iris) or surgical procedure (Iridectomy – a small part of iris is removed) is carried out in order to bypass the blockage in your eye’s drainage system and prevent a recurrence of the problem. Normally the same procedure is also performed in the other eye, in order to prevent an attack of acute angle closure in that eye. These treatments are not painful and usually done on a day patient basis, although a short stay in hospital may occasionally be required. If acute primary angle closure is diagnosed and treated without delay there may be an almost complete and permanent damage to the affected eye. Occasionally the pressure may remain raised and ongoing treatment will be required as for POAG
Chronic primary angle closure is treated in a similar way to POAG, with drops to lower the pressure. In addition, laser treatment is often given to prevent further angle closure
Posted in: Glaucoma
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