What exactly is glaucoma?
Glaucoma (glaucoma) is a common eye disease affecting millions of people. It is characterized as an insidious and irreversible eye condition that can even lead to complete blindness, if not treated early. Glaucoma is usually due to high fluid pressure inside the eye. This pressure is called intraocular pressure, increases the risk of progressive destruction of the optic nerve leading to vision loss.
Glaucoma develops slowly over a period of years. It is a “silent” disease, since most patients in the early stages, often do not show symptoms. Increased intraocular pressure (typically over 20-22 mmHg) is the first indication of the existence of the disease, although there are rare cases where we have glaucoma even with normal pressure (low pressure glaucoma – here, the vascular factor plays an important role).
What does a glaucoma study include?
The glaucoma study is done by measuring the ocular pressure, the assessment of our visual field, and the study of the optic nerve – with a fundoscopy and specific early detection tests, where appropriate. The diagnosis of glaucoma requires the presence of lesions in the optic nerve which are usually accompanied by corresponding changes in our visual field, and increased eye pressure. However, the absence of early symptoms often leads to glaucoma patients with advanced, irreversible damages.
The examinations included a detailed study of glaucoma are:
- corneal pachymetry
- papilla and macular tomography (HRT)
- spectral optical coherence tomography (OCT)
- visual field testing (electronic perimetry)
- stereometric resolution of the papilla layers
- tomography of the optical fiber layer