Our Mankato and New Ulm Optometrists
Diagnose and Treat Glaucoma
Glaucoma is a common cause of vision loss and can affect people of all ages. At Carlson-Tillisch Eye Clinic, serving Mankato and New Ulm, MN, our optometrists will work with you to find the best treatment to preserve your precious vision.
Glaucoma: Causes, Risk Factors, Signs, and Symptoms
Glaucoma isn't a single disease but rather a group of conditions that cause vision loss due to damage to the optic nerve. Open-angle glaucoma is the most common form of glaucoma and happens when fluid normally present in the eye doesn't drain properly. Fluid starts to build up and pressure inside the eye increases, damaging the area where the optic nerve connects to the back of the eye.
Risk factors for glaucoma include smoking, a history of eye trauma or surgery, a family history, extreme nearsightedness, long-term use of certain medications (like steroids), smoking, high blood pressure, diabetes, or being of African or Latino ethnicity.
You usually won't notice any symptoms when glaucoma is in its early stages. Over time, as optic nerve damage gets worse, sufferers might develop loss of side (peripheral) vision.
Rarely, a medical emergency known as angle-closure glaucoma can happen. This is when the colored part of the eye (iris) bulges and blocks the channel that drains inner eye fluid, leading to sudden symptoms like eye pain, vision loss, and headaches. Call us or call 911 within 24 hours if you or a loved one experience these symptoms.
How Our New Ulm and Mankato Optometrists Treats Glaucoma
You might think that because glaucoma has no symptoms at first, it can't be diagnosed in its early stages, but we use the latest diagnostic techniques that allow us to identify glaucoma, even when you don't notice anything wrong with your vision! To diagnose glaucoma, we may also ask about your medical and family history and measure your inner eye pressure.
Glaucoma can't be cured, but we can offer treatments that help slow the condition's progression and preserve as much of your eyesight as possible. These treatments tend to work better the sooner you're diagnosed, so that's why regular glaucoma screening is so important!
Glaucoma treatment we offer include:
- Prescription eye drops
- Oral medications
- Lifestyle interventions
- Referral for the best surgical or laser treatment
- Peri-operative care for eye surgery