New Jersey Eye MD.com, Kinnelon NJ 973.838.7722
National Eye Care Institute Info
Source: GMN Health
January is Glaucoma Awareness Month.
Glaucoma is a group of diseases that damages the optic nerve, which carries the visual signals from the eye to the brain, and can lead to vision loss or blindness if left untreated.
Primary open-angle glaucoma is the most common form of this disease and often has no symptoms in its early stages. Quite frequently, by the time people are diagnosed with glaucoma, they’ve already begun to notice changes in their sideways, or peripheral, vision.
While anyone can get glaucoma, people at higher risk for glaucoma include African Americans age 40 and older; everyone over age 60, especially Mexican Americans; and those with a family history of the disease. “Studies show that at least half of all persons with glaucoma don’t know they have this potentially blinding eye disease,” said National Eye Institute (NEI) director Dr. Paul Sieving. “The good news is that glaucoma can be detected in its early stages through a comprehensive dilated eye exam.”
When glaucoma is detected early, it can be controlled through medications or surgery. If you are at higher risk, make sure you get a comprehensive dilated eye exam every 1 to 2 years and encourage family members to do so as well.
So wherever life takes you, keep vision in your future. Don’t wait until you notice problems with your vision to see an eye care professional. A low-cost exam may be available to you through Medicare. For more information, call 1-800-MEDICARE or visit http://medicare.gov.
For additional information about glaucoma, call 301- 496-5248 or visit the National Eye Institute’s website at http://nei.nih.gov.
There’s so much more in life to see — don’t let glaucoma take your sight away.