Glaucoma - Effective Treatments

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What kinds of treatments have been effective for your glaucoma?

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What is the treatment for glaucoma?

General approach

Although nerve damage and visual loss from glaucoma cannot usually be reversed, glaucoma is a disease that can generally be controlled. That is, treatment can make the intraocular pressure normal and, therefore, prevent or retard further nerve damage and visual loss. Treatment may involve the use of eyedrop medications, pills (rarely), laser, or incisional surgery.

In the United States, eyedrop medications are usually used first in treating most types of open-angle glaucoma. In contrast, in Europe, laser or surgery is sometimes the first choice of treatment. One or more types of eyedrops may have to be taken up to several times a day to lower intraocular pressure. These drops work either by reducing the production of the aqueous fluid (shutting the faucet) or by increasing the drainage of the fluid out of the eye. Each type of therapy has its benefits and potential complications.

It is important to remember that many patients at risk for glaucoma or who have glaucoma also may have other eye diseases such as cataract or macular degeneration. An ophthalmologist can determine whether any visual loss that one is experiencing is being caused by glaucoma or by other eye abnormalities.

There are many patients whose examination reveals increased risk for glaucoma but no definite evidence of eye damage from glaucoma. These patients have what is termed ocular hypertension (OHT), formerly known as "pre-glaucoma" or "glaucoma suspect." Patients with OHT have no visual field loss but are at increased risk of glaucoma because of the presence of elevated intra-ocular pressure or optic nerve changes visible on ophthalmoscopy or imaging. Some of the patients with OHT require treatment. These patients with OHT need to be observed frequently so that treatment can be initiated prior to the onset of glaucomatous damage.

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See what others are saying

Comment from: Timetraveller, 65-74 Male (Patient) Published: May 13

When I saw an eye doctor for glaucoma the first time he said it had progressed to a point that surgery would be too risky and I could lose my sight completely. I had no symptoms whatsoever. I was sent there by a Walmart doctor who tested me for a new script for glasses. He saw a blood spot on my optic nerve. The doctor he sent me to said it was nothing but that I definitely had glaucoma and had it for a few years. I didn't start having symptoms and losing my sight until I was started on the drops. My eyes are gradually getting worse. I had to stop driving 5 years ago. My brother has glaucoma with pressure of 12 without drops. I think the drops are a useless scam and I will go blind with or without them because using them is not slowing my loss of sight down. It's like cancer. Chemo only cures 2 kinds of cancer using chemo on any other type is just lining the drug companies pockets with big profits. The medical profession is turning into one big ugly scam.

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Comment from: Jake, 65-74 Male (Patient) Published: December 23

I have had high eye pressure (glaucoma) for 25 years. I found vitamin C helps for eye pain, also benfotiamine can help lower pressure.

Was this comment helpful?Yes


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