There are two types of Glaucoma – acute closed angle and chronic open-angle glaucomas. types of glaucoma

In patients with acute closed-angle glaucoma, the drainage angle becomes fully blocked and there is a sudden increase in pressure inside the eyes that may very fast lead to blindness. The chronic open-angle glaucoma is the most common. Usually, this kind of glaucoma develops over number of years and the normal pressure of the fluid in the eyes slowly rises. A clear, fluid named the aqucous humor flows in and out of the chamber to deliver nutrients to nearby tissues and remove waste. In people with chronic open-angle glaucoma, the drainage angle does not function normally and the fluid does not drain properly.

As the fluid builds up, the pressure inside the eyes increases, possibly causing irreversible damage to the optic nerves. Damage to the optic nerve produces vision loss that can lead to blindness. There are about 3 million people in the U.S. that have glaucoma. It is the #3 disease, which leads to blindness. People who are in high risk to get this disease are those who have diabetes, over 60 years of age and older, those who are nearsighted, and people with a family history of this disorder.

It is not a treatable disease, but may be controlled by some medications to lower the pressure in the eyes and by surgery. Early treatment and detection of glaucoma is the major way to control this condition.

People who are at high risk for development of this disease must be examined by an ophthalmologist every two years.

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