Glaucoma Evaluation & Screening
What is glaucoma?
Glaucoma is a disease in the eye that causes damage to the optic nerve, resulting in loss of vision or even blindness. Like any disease, it’s important to detect glaucoma early on which can help have a significant impact on results from treatment and your eyes are more likely to be protected from vision loss. According to several studies, it’s been shown that eye pressure is directly related to one’s risk factor of optic nerve damage. This is one reason why we test the pressure in your eyes during an eye exam.
If the pressure in your eyes rises to an unhealthy level, damage to the optic nerve may occur, resulting in glaucoma and even vision loss. Blood pressure may also be associated with optic nerve damage as the increased blood flow may cause the pressure in your eyes to increase. These are not the only factors that contribute to glaucoma. Even people with normal eye pressure can develop glaucoma, which is why routine eye exams are vital to your vision.
Who is at risk for developing glaucoma?
Although anyone can develop glaucoma, certain predispositions put others at a higher risk for developing this eye disease. Such predispositions include, people of African American ethnicity who are over the age of 40, anyone with a family history of glaucoma, or anyone over the age of 60 pose a higher risk for developing glaucoma, especially Mexican Americans.
What are the symptoms of glaucoma?
In the early stages of glaucoma you may not notice anything out of the ordinary, in fact, you may not experience any symptoms. In the beginning, you may not experience any pain and your vision may seem normal. As the glaucoma begins to worsen you may notice slight changes in your vision affecting one or both of your eyes. You vision may even seem as though you’re looking through a tunnel. As glaucoma reaches a more severe state, you may lose vision entirely.
How is glaucoma detected?
There are several tests we can perform to detect glaucoma. A glaucoma evaluation is conducted using a variety of tests that are typically part of a normal eye exam, which is why it’s important to visit your eye care professional regularly. A variety of tests are conducted to test for glaucoma. During your glaucoma evaluation you can expect a visual acuity test that will gauge how well you see at varying distances. A visual field test will measure your peripheral, or side vision, which is typically where vision loss begins when glaucoma is present. Also, a dilated eye exam may be conducted which widens the pupils. Dilation of the pupils allow your eye care professional to see deep within your pupil, using a special lens, for a close up view of your retina and optic nerve. Signs of optic nerve damage or other problems related to the eye may also be determined through a dilated eye exam. A tonometry is another test performed in which numbing drops are placed in your eyes and small instrument is used to gauge your eye pressure. This test is completely painless. A pachymetry is another test in which numbing drops are also used, followed by an ultrasonic wave instrument that measures the thickness of your cornea. When it comes to your eyes, routine exams are vital to preserving vision. Vision is something that unfortunately, cannot be restored, but routine eye exams allow us the opportunity to detect eye diseases early in order to help slow the progression of vision loss. Call Gallaher Eye Care today to schedule a routine exam, which includes a glaucoma evaluation.
Office Hours & Info
- 8:00am - 5:00pm
- 8:00am - 6:00pm
- 8:00am - 5:00pm
- 8:00am - 6:00pm
- 8:00am - 12:00pm
- By Appointment*
*One Saturday per month.
- 401 West Main Street, Ste 101
- Lebanon, TN 37087