Houston Optometrist

Glaucoma TreatmentHouston, TX

When it comes to diagnosing and treating vision issues, it is crucial for us to get as detailed a view of the eyes as possible. While they may seem small in the grand scheme of things, the eyes have layers and individual components that help people to see clearly. Glaucoma treatment is a treatment process that treats increased pressure damaging the eye’s optic nerve.

Glaucoma treatment is offered at Vision Corner Uptown in Houston and the surrounding area. If sudden physical trauma or a condition damage certain parts of the eye, each component may require unique treatment. A condition such as glaucoma will only continue to worsen over time and cause permanent damage to one’s vision without treatment.

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What is glaucoma?

The term glaucoma refers to a group of eye disorders that cause damage to a person's optic nerve, typically due to the high pressure it creates in the eye. The optic nerve is essential for clear vision. A damaged optical nerve can lead to permanent blindness. It is the leading cause of loss of vision in people who are 65 or older.

Glaucoma can affect people of all ages, but it is more likely to affect seniors. Glaucoma has many different forms, and most have few symptoms or warning signs. Most people with glaucoma do not notice any changes to their vision until their condition has progressed to an advanced stage.

Doctors cannot reverse vision loss caused by glaucoma, so it is important to diagnose it early on to prevent blindness from occurring. This is one of the many reasons why senior eye care is so important. Optometrists recommend yearly eye examinations for all those who over the age of 60. When glaucoma is detected early on, the vision loss that typically comes with it can be prevented or, at least, slowed down. People diagnosed with glaucoma usually need glaucoma treatment for the rest of their lives.

Types of glaucoma include:

Open-angle glaucoma: This problem happens when the drainage system in the eye gets partially blocked. It is the most common type of glaucoma.

Angle-closure glaucoma: This occurs when the iris blocks the drainage path. It can also if the patient has a narrower drainage system than normal.

Normal-tension glaucoma: This type occurs when the optic nerve becomes damaged despite the patient having healthy eye pressure.

Pigmentary glaucoma: This occurs when pigment granules that part with the iris build up in the drainage system in the eyes.

Signs glaucoma treatment is needed

The symptoms and signs of open-angle glaucoma can vary depending on the person's condition and the type of glaucoma. They include:

  • Severe headaches
  • Blind spots in a person’s vision
  • Tunnel vision in the later stages
  • For the acute angle-closure variety, the symptoms include:

  • Vomiting and nausea
  • Halos appearing around light
  • Red eyes
  • Headaches
  • Blurred vision
  • Causes of glaucoma

    Doctors do not fully understand how increased eye pressure damages the eyes, but glaucoma is the result of damaged optic nerves. A person's eye pressure builds up due to a collection of aqueous humor, a fluid that flows through the insides of the eyes. This fluid usually drains through a tissue known as the trabecular meshwork.

    When the drainage system does not work as it is supposed to, or more fluid than what is needed is made, the person's eye pressure increases. The conditions that lead to glaucoma typically runs in families. Other risk factors include:

  • Being over age 60
  • Certain eye injuries
  • Ethnicity (People of African, Asian and Hispanic descent are more likely to develop it)
  • Medical conditions like heart disease, high blood pressure and diabetes
  • Benefits of optical tomography

    Treating an issue such as glaucoma is a process with multiple steps and visits to our practice. Glaucoma is a condition that involves a buildup of pressure from fluid in the eye which damages the optic nerve and causes blindness over time. Known as intraocular pressure, this pressure harms the optic nerve. The optic nerve is the component of the eye that transmits images to the brain. If glaucoma continues without treatment, the patient will experience permanent vision loss.

    Fortunately, we can help provide treatment that creates a model of the patient’s eyes. With optical tomography, we can create a model of each layer of the patient’s retina to map out and measure the thickness. This will help us determine the most effective method for glaucoma treatment. Benefits of our treatment include:

  • Detailed diagnosis and treatment plan
  • Professional eyecare and methods to help relieve symptoms
  • Continuing treatment after the initial appointment
  • Determining the most effective treatment
  • Being able to identify and diagnose glaucoma in patients with family members that have it
  • Understanding optical tomography

    We can help to treat glaucoma by using high tech equipment and techniques such as optical tomography.

    Optical tomography involves taking multiple images of the retina at various angels. This allows us to create a much more detailed model of the patient’s retina. The retina is a thin layer of tissue at the back of the eye near the optic nerve. The retina receives light that it converts into neural signals to send to the brain. The brain will then go through visual recognition with this image.

    By using optical tomography, we can guide the treatment process down the most effective path. Since glaucoma does not typically display symptoms until a patient is in their 40s, it is important to seek regular eye exams. One of the main causes of glaucoma is if a past relative has the condition. By scheduling regular appointments with us and mentioning this, we can continue to check the eyes for the condition.

    Other signs of glaucoma that patients can display include:

  • Vision loss
  • Seeing halos around lights
  • Eyes that appear hazy
  • Pain in the eyes
  • Tunnel vision
  • Redness in the eyes
  • The Glaucoma treatment process

    If a patient is experiencing any of the symptoms above, then it is crucial to seek a professional eye exam from us as soon as possible. Even if the symptoms are signs of a different condition, we can help to diagnose and treat it. During an exam to check for glaucoma, we will use some eyedrops to dilate the patient’s pupils. This will help us to get a clear view of the optic nerve.

    The eye doctor will examine the patient by performing an examination. The optometrist may:

  • Perform a tonometry test to measure the person’s eye pressure
  • Check for vision loss
  • Measure the thickness of the patient’s cornea
  • Examine the optic nerve and the drainage system in the eyes
  • Along with checking the pressure of the eyes, we will also check to see if the patient has lost any of their peripheral vision. With optical tomography, we can take multiple images to track glaucoma and how much it is advancing over time. The test itself will not take long and is painless. Once we determine the extent of glaucoma, we can then customize the treatment.

    Possible treatment options include non-surgical and surgical options. One of the first choices is to prescribe eye drops. Depending on the prescription, the eyedrops will either reduce the formation of fluid in the eye or increase the outflow of fluid. Both can help to relieve the pressure. While laser surgery and microsurgery are possible options, we will need to ensure the patient can handle them.

    The treatments usually used to treat glaucoma aim to prevent the condition from leading to permanent damage or minimizing the damage done. Treatment options include:

  • Prescription eye drops
  • Oral medication
  • Surgery
  • Laser treatments
  • Begin treatment today

    The key to glaucoma treatment is to seek regular eye exams as soon as possible. Even if there are not any signs right away, regular eye exams can monitor the development of the retinas and highlight any concerning changes or symptoms. To begin treatment or learn more about how this high-tech equipment can help you, call us today and schedule an appointment.

    Contact Us

    Vision Corner Uptown is located at
    4725 Westheimer Rd
    Houston, TX

    (713) 357-6195