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Eye pressure i.e. glaucoma is a progressive disease that can cause permanent vision loss if left untreated.

In glaucoma, there is an increase in intraocular pressure to a level that damages the optic nerve, which is necessary for vision, as a result of the inability to drain the intraocular fluid that is constantly made for the nourishment of the intraocular tissues.

It often starts over the age of 40 and usually does not show any serious symptoms until permanent vision damage occurs.

For early diagnosis, it is extremely important for individuals with a family history of glaucoma to go to an ophthalmologist regularly from the age of 35-40 and have their eye pressure measured.

Glaucoma can generally only be noticed by the patient in the advanced period. Early diagnosis is very important, as the damage that occurs after vision loss is irreversible.

High intraocular pressure detected during a normal eye examination may be the first sign of the disease.

Ophthalmoscopic view of the normal fundus.

In uncontrolled glaucoma, extreme damage to the optic nerve and progressive field of vision loss.

Progressive damage to the optic nerve in uncontrolled glaucoma

Changes of field of vision in glaucoma

Optic nerve damage and progressive narrowing of the field of vision in progressive glaucoma.

Factors that increase the risk of developing glaucoma include:

  • advancing age
  • having a family history of glaucoma
  • smoking
  • diabetes
  • high/low blood pressure
  • high myopia / hyperopia
  • long-term cortisone therapy
  • eye injuries
  • migraine

Regular eye follow-ups of people with these features in terms of glaucoma are very important for early diagnosis.
Can glaucoma be healed?

Glaucoma cannot be completely eliminated, but with appropriate treatment approaches, it can be successfully controlled and the progression of vision loss can be stopped.

It is a disease that requires lifelong control and regular follow-up.

How is glaucoma treated?

Open-angle glaucoma is treated with eye drops that lower intraocular pressure.

If there is no adequate response to medications , surgery or laser interventions can be applied.

The main purpose of these treatments is to preserve the patient's remaining vision and field of vision.  However, in some cases, retinal ganglion cells do not die completely and are in sleep mode. In these patients, growth factor injections and, if necessary, magnovision support can increase the field of vision.

Apart from open-angle glaucoma, narrow-angle glaucoma and congenital glaucoma types also exist.  Narrow-angle glaucoma begins with sudden pain around the eyes and in the head, decreased vision, bloodshot eyes, nausea, and vomiting. Treatment should be carried out urgently, otherwise the vision loss will be very severe. In order to prevent acute attacks from recurring, protective laser iridotomy should be performed on both eyes after the eye pressure is lowered.

In congenital glaucoma, the treatment is surgery. More than one surgical procedure may be required.

What are the simple rules you should follow ? 
Use your medicine at the same time every day, as recommended by your physician.
 (This way, you can remember your eye drops more easily and make them more effective.

Discuss any side effects that affect your daily life with your physician.)

After instilling the drops, keep your eyes closed for 1 minute. (In this way, you will prevent the risk of the medication mixing into the blood and producing side effects)

If you are using more than one drop, take a break of at least 5 minutes between drops.

Make sure to have your controls performed  during the control periods recommended by your doctor. Your disease can only be successfully treated when you are followed up regularly.

Warn your ophthalmologist about the medications  you take for other diseases, and warn other specialists that you have glaucoma.

Since glaucoma can be familial, warn all your family members to have regular eye examinations.

Have your periodic field of vision examinations done in line with your doctor's recommendations.

Do not forget that glaucoma treatment can be successful for a lifetime with determination, and your eyesight can only be protected with this determination.