Glaucoma is a group of diseases that lead to blindness through damage to the optic nerve. Glaucoma does not have any symptoms at the beginning of this disease, and the vision of a person suffering from glaucoma gradually decreases over time, and if not treated, it will lead to blindness. About 2% of the people in society are suffering from glaucoma and about 50% of the people suffering from glaucoma are not even aware of their disease. If the glaucoma disease is detected in time and the treatment process is started, it is possible to prevent the loss of vision or blindness of the patient.
What is the optic nerve?
The optic nerve is a bundle consisting of about one million nerve fibers (nerve fibers) that connect the light-sensitive part of the eye (retina) to the brain. For a person to have a proper and desirable vision, he/she must have a healthy optic nerve.
Types of glaucoma
Open-angle glaucoma is the most common type of glaucoma. In open-angle glaucoma, the outflow of the clear aqueous humor from the angle of the eye (where the cornea and the iris meet) through the retina is much slower than normal, and with increasing in the accumulation of the aqueous humor and as a result, the possibility of damage to the optic nerves is also higher and may even lead to blindness.
In glaucoma, because the peripheral part and the field of vision are affected at the beginning of the disease, therefore, a person does not notice his disease, and when at the end of the disease, the damage is done to the central parts of the visual field, the visual impairment worsens and the vision is greatly reduced, and at this time, the patient notices the disease.
Angle-closure glaucoma also called closed-angle glaucoma
In angle-closure glaucoma, the angle of the eye is blocked by the iris, as a result, the aqueous humor has no way to exit due to the obstruction, and its accumulation in the eye causes an increase in intraocular pressure. Angle glaucoma is divided into two types, chronic and acute.
a. Chronic Angle-closure glaucoma
This type of glaucoma, like open-angle glaucoma, has no initial symptoms in patients with this type of disease, and in the long term, it affects vision. The incidence of chronic angle-closure glaucoma is higher in women, people with binocular vision, and those who have a positive family history of it. In this type of glaucoma, after starting the process of treatment and control of eye pressure, surgery is done to stabilize the patient's vision.
B. Acute closed-angle glaucoma
In this type of glaucoma, the patient experiences a sudden increase in intraocular pressure due to the obstruction of the retinal tissue of the angle by the iris and as a result of the accumulation of aqueous humor in the eye.
In this type of glaucoma, children are born with a congenital defect in the corner of the eye. This congenital defect slows down the outflow of aqueous humor. Children with this type of glaucoma have symptoms such as tears, cloudiness of the cornea (cloudy eye), and sensitivity to light. In children with glaucoma, the eye is usually larger than normal.
Secondary glaucoma may be caused by other complications and eye diseases such as acute cataracts, tumors, eye injuries, eye inflammations, and infections, or even after eye surgeries.
One of the types of secondary glaucoma is called Pigmentary Glaucoma. This type of glaucoma occurs when eye pigments from the free iris and the obstruction of the angular reticular tissue are associated with slow outflow of clear aqueous humor and increased eye pressure.
Another type of secondary glaucoma is glaucoma caused by the development of abnormal new vessels, which is usually seen in people with diabetes or people with blocked eye vessels (NeovaScular Glavcoma). Those who use corticosteroids (drugs containing corticosteroids) for a long time should also be careful.
Medicine, laser, and eye surgery are used to treat secondary glaucoma. During the visit of the patients, it is sometimes observed that they have a series of eye complications such as cataracts, glaucoma, and refractive errors. The treatment of each of them has different stages and priorities.