Know the Causes of Glaucoma to Maintain Your Ocular Health

Illustration of how pressure in the eye can cause glaucomaThe doctors at Broberg Eye Care can help you understand the causes of glaucoma and provide diagnosis and treatment to ensure you maintain good eye health. Dr. Peter Broberg, Dr. Halsey Settle, and Dr. William McGlathery are committed to helping patients understand the causes of glaucoma. We can slow the progression of the disease and preserve patients' vision. Contact our office today to learn more about the causes of glaucoma and schedule a consultation at our Austin, TX practice.

What Is Glaucoma?

Glaucoma is a group of eye conditions that damage the optic nerve, which transmits visual information from the eye to the brain. In most cases, glaucoma is caused by an increase of intraocular pressure within the eye. The most common type of glaucoma is open-angle glaucoma, which gradually develops as the thin channels in the eye become clogged with fluid. This form of glaucoma often results in minimal or no symptoms until the condition has advanced. In contrast, closed-angle glaucoma results in a sharp, sudden blockage within the eye, causing an acute, immediate increase in intraocular pressure. Closed-angle glaucoma typically causes more obvious symptoms and may require emergency treatment.

Risk Factors

You may be at higher risk for glaucoma if:

  • You are older than 50, since this disease often develops as patients age and their ocular tissue degrades
  • You are of African-American or Japanese descent
  • You suffer from heart disease, uncontrolled diabetes, thyroid problems, or hypertension
  • You take steroid medications
  • Your family members have had glaucoma
  • You have a history of eye trauma or other ocular diseases

If you are at a higher risk of developing glaucoma, you should be especially conscientious about attending regular eye exams and monitoring your eyes for the symptoms of glaucoma.

Screening Techniques

Our ophthalmologists check for the signs of glaucoma during routine eye exams. We use our Zeiss optical coherence tomography device to create a detailed 3D map of your eye and look for any signs of rising intraocular pressure. Our doctors may also check your optometric prescription, examine your eye for injury to the optic nerve, assess the quality of your peripheral vision, measure intraocular pressure, and evaluate the thickness of your cornea. Undergoing comprehensive eye exams allows us to diagnose glaucoma in its early stages, when it is easier to treat.

Glaucoma Treatment Options

We provide several treatment choices for patients who suffer from glaucoma. For patients with open-angle glaucoma, our ophthalmologists perform a procedure called selective laser trabeculoplasty, modifying the ocular tissue so that fluid can drain more effectively. This surgery typically takes less than 30 minutes to complete and can mitigate the effects of glaucoma for between one and five years. For less severe cases, we also provide eye drops that improve fluid circulation and decrease intraocular pressure. If you need or want non-laser surgery, we can refer you to a trusted partner surgeon to receive this treatment. At Broberg Eye Care, we have a high caseload of glaucoma patients, so our doctors have considerable experience successfully diagnosing and treating this disease.

Learn More about the Causes of Glaucoma

To learn more about this condition or schedule a consultation with one of our doctors, contact our office today.  

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