Glaucoma

Glaucoma is a serious condition of the eye, which over time, can result in vision loss. This condition is characterized by an increase in eye pressure, which causes permanent damage to the optic nerve. There are two types of glaucoma, and unfortunately, there is no cure for either type. Fortunately, our optometrist at Highland Family Eye Care in Saint Paul can create a treatment plan to slow the progression of the disease.

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Types of Glaucoma

The most common type is open-angle glaucoma. This form occurs when the drainage system in your eye is not functioning properly, similar to a slow drain. When the fluid cannot drain properly, it causes the pressure in your eyes to increase. The second type is angle-closure glaucoma, and it is less common. This form occurs when the drainage system in your eyes becomes completely clogged, causing a rapid spike in your eye pressure. This type is very dangerous and requires immediate medical assistance.

Glaucoma Symptoms

Open-angle glaucoma is also known as “the silent thief of sight.” This is because this form shows no early symptoms. In the later stages, you will develop blind spots in your peripheral vision. In the advanced stages, tunnel vision may occur.

Angle-closure glaucoma causes early symptoms that are often severe due to the rapid increase in eye pressure. The symptoms include:

  • Severe headaches
  • Severe eye pain
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Seeing halos around lights
  • Blurry vision
  • Redness of the eyes

Glaucoma Treatment

Although there is no cure for glaucoma, our optometrist can create a treatment plan to slow the progression of the disease.

  • Eye drops: In the early stages, our optometrist will prescribe eye drops to control the pressure in your eyes. If eye drops do not work, we can prescribe an oral medication.
  • Drainage tubes: An eye doctor can insert small tubes in your eyes designed to drain the excess fluid.
  • Laser trabeculoplasty: This is a laser surgical procedure designed to unclog the eye's drainage system.
  • Trabeculectomy: This is a surgical procedure where the eye doctor will create a small incision in the white of your eye to remove part of the meshwork, which will help the fluid drain.

Eyecare in Saint Paul, MN

Glaucoma is a serious condition. This condition along with several other eye health conditions can be detected early through annual eye exams. Call Highland Family Eye Care today at (651) 699-5400 to schedule an appointment with Dr. Snyder.

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