January is National Glaucoma Awareness Month.
Many of our providers’ patients have some form of vision-impairing eye condition. Glaucoma is one of four major age-related eye diseases (AREDs). There is currently no cure, but treatment and regular checkups can help slow or prevent vision loss, especially if you catch the disease in its early stages.
Did you know?
- More than 3 million people in the US have glaucoma
- The National Eye Institute projects the number of people with glaucoma will increase by 58% by 2030 which would be a total of 4.2 million people
- As much as 40% of vision can be lost without a person noticing
- Glaucoma is the leading cause of irreversible blindness
What Is Glaucoma?
Glaucoma is a group of eye diseases that gradually steal sight without warning. Although the most common forms primarily affect the middle-aged and the elderly, glaucoma can affect people of all ages.
There are two main types of glaucoma: primary open-angle glaucoma (POAG), and angle-closure glaucoma. “Open-angle” means that the angle where the iris meets the cornea is as wide and open as it should be. Open-angle glaucoma is also called primary or chronic glaucoma. It is the most common type of glaucoma. Acute angle-closure glaucoma occurs when the fluid pressure inside your eye rises quickly.
Those at higher risk include people of African, Asian, and Hispanic descent. Other high-risk groups include people over 60, family members of those already diagnosed, diabetics, and people who are severely nearsighted. Regular eye exams are especially important for those at higher risk for glaucoma and may help to prevent unnecessary vision loss.
Learn more here: https://www.glaucoma.org/news/glaucoma-awareness-month.php