Dr. Brad Wemhoener
Glaucoma is a disease of the eyes that damages the optic nerve (the cord that plugs your eye into your brain). Some glaucoma problems are hereditary and some are caused by other acquired problems such as injury or other illnesses that may affect the eyes.
A patient has glaucoma if the internal pressure of the eye gets too high for the nerves to receive proper blood flow and nutrition. Inside the eye, the aqueous fluid is constantly being pumped in and drains out. If this pumping gets out of balance (too much in OR not enough out), then the pressure inside the eye, called the IOP (intraocular pressure) rises and may damage the optic nerve.
Routine exams are the best way to measure this pressure and treat the eyes if abnormal levels are present. Glaucoma is usually painless and has no warning until the damage to the nerve is excessive.
Annual visits to the eye doctor are important, especially if family members have a history of glaucoma.
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