Over 50? Keeping Up With Your Healthcare Needs

Over 50? Keeping Up With Your Healthcare Needs

Why There Are So Many Different Treatments For Glaucoma

Nellie Ryan

There are many, many treatments for glaucoma. This can sometimes cause confusion for people who need care for their glaucoma and its symptoms. You can have medication, surgery, or a combination of both. Don't fall into the trap of thinking there's only one option available to you.

Not All Glaucoma Is the Same

The reason for so many different glaucoma treatments is the many different types of glaucoma. Many people think of glaucoma as a single thing, but it's actually a word that describes a group of eye diseases.

Generally, glaucoma involves pressure from fluid in the eye causing damage to the optic nerve. That in turn can lead to slow vision loss, and even permanent blindness. There are two main categories of glaucoma.

  • Open angle glaucoma
  • Angle closure glaucoma

But these terms are also umbrella terms that can cover several other types of glaucoma. Because of the variables, you may need different types of treatments than someone else with a similar issue.

When Is Medication Appropriate?

Early detection of glaucoma typically necessitates the use of medication to keep it from developing further. The main role of medication is to keep the intraocular pressure down. It will either serve to:

  • keep fluid from building up, or
  • allow built up fluid to drain.

To that end, you may receive a prescription for a series of medicated eyedrops to assist with that.

Since these are medications, they can cause side effects for some. They may also cause complications if you're taking other medications for any reason. You may also receive pills that can help the eyedrops do their job. In best case scenarios, taking the medication can keep the pressure down, which will keep your eye from taking any permanent damage.

Medication also comes into play for post-glaucoma surgery. However, there are various types of surgeries and also many variables concerning post-surgery medication procedures.

When Is Surgery Appropriate?

Many scenarios exist that make glaucoma surgery necessary.

  • If medication doesn't work
  • If medication affects you negatively
  • If you already have damage that can affect your way of life
  • If your type of glaucoma makes it necessary

You may request surgery yourself if you find the medication routine to be too demanding. There are various types of glaucoma surgeries. In general, the two main types include:

Laser surgery – There are various laser techniques, and typically, laser surgery is the first surgical suggestion. Usually, if laser surgery isn't an option, the doctor will recommend conventional surgery.

Conventional surgery – This is the type of surgery that involves incisions. In most cases, you will need the trabeculectomy procedure.

There are other types of glaucoma surgeries besides these two. But this isn't anything that should overly concern you. Your eye doctor will recommend the best surgical route you should take for your glaucoma.

Talk About Your Options with Your Eye Doctor

Everybody's different, and your glaucoma treatments may not mirror anybody else's. Knowing the options out there will help you understand why your eye doctor may want you to go one route when you feel you want a different type of treatment.

For more information and options, talk with an eye doctor, such as those at Leader Heights Eye Center, about the different glaucoma treatments.


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About Me
Over 50? Keeping Up With Your Healthcare Needs

As an adult in my 50s, I find that my body isn't as strong as it used to be. But I don't let that stop me from enjoying life! In fact, I make every effort to get the treatments I need from my doctor to improve my health. I know that I'm not a senior yet, but I do all I can to prevent the health problems that affect that age group. Because of this, I put together a health blog for people over age 50. My blog isn't a review of what you can easily find on the Internet. It's a plethora of unique information designed to help you find the services you need fast. What my blog doesn't do is tell you what to do for your health. Instead, it offers guidance and options. Please, enjoy the blog and happy reading.