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Our Las Vegas Ophthalmologist Answers Glaucoma FAQ’s

Glaucoma is a serious eye condition that can have terrible consequences if not treated properly. At Brimhall Eye Center in Las Vegas, we test for glaucoma and treat patients who have been diagnosed with this condition. We also strive to educate patients about glaucoma, so they'll know how important it is to be tested for this condition. This FAQ is designed to answer your questions, so you'll have greater understanding of this serious disease.

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What is glaucoma?

Glaucoma is a condition wherein the fluid in the eye rises slowly. This creates pressure inside the eye that damages the optic nerve. Without proper treatment, glaucoma can lead to vision loss and blindness.

Who is at risk for glaucoma?

Anyone can get glaucoma, however, there are some groups of people who are at higher risk to contract this disease. Some of the most high risk groups include:

  • Seniors and elderly
  • People who have a family history of getting glaucoma
  • African Americans and Hispanics
  • People who have diabetes

What causes glaucoma?

Glaucoma is caused by a buildup of fluid in the anterior chamber, the space at the front of the eye. This buildup occurs when fluid flows out of the anterior chamber too slowly.

What are the symptoms of glaucoma?

Glaucoma does not have symptoms in the beginning. As time goes on, the patient's peripheral vision may begin to fail. This failure of the peripheral vision becomes a wide spread problem, and the patient's field of vision narrows until he or she is fully blind.

How do you treat glaucoma?

Glaucoma can be treated with eye drops or surgery that enables the fluid to drain from the eyes. Surgery is usually regarded as a last resort and is only used when medication is not working.

Is it possible to reverse vision loss that occurs because of glaucoma?

Vision loss that occurs because of glaucoma is permanent. This is why getting regular eye exams is critical: eye doctors can detect glaucoma well before patients notice vision loss.

How is glaucoma detected in tests?

There are multiple tests that your eye doctor will use to detect glaucoma. One such test involves measuring your eye's resistance to a puff of air. This helps the eye doctor determine how much pressure exists in your eye. Your eye doctor will also evaluate optic nerve, test your visual field and inspect your eye's ability to drain fluid. Glaucoma tests will involve dilating your pupils.

How often should you be tested for glaucoma?

Patients should be tested for glaucoma once per year, during their annual eye exams. Patients who are at particular risk for glaucoma may need to be tested more frequently. If this is the case, your ophthalmologist will tell you how often you should return for eye exams.

At the Brimhall Eye Center, we treat patients for glaucoma in Las Vegas and the surrounding area. If you have questions about glaucoma or would like to be tested for glaucoma, contact your ophthalmologist at Brimhall Eye Center at (702) 263-2020. Our ophthalmology experts will be able to test your eyes for glaucoma and prescribe treatment if necessary.

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