Glaucoma is a condition that silently affects a significant portion of our population. People often are completely unaware that they have this condition until they have lost significant amounts of their vision. Glaucoma is basically when the pressure of the eye affects the optic nerve, the main nerve of the eye that lets you see, resulting in progressive damage occurring to the nerve. This affects your peripheral vision first and then advances to complete blindness if left untreated. The reason most people do not notice it before it has become a significant problem is the fact that it affects your side vision first, as opposed to macular degeneration which affects central vision first.
We have state-of-the-art equipment to perform glaucoma testing if the doctor sees that you need it, including two different types of visual field testing machines, an optic nerve analyzer and a device to measure the corneal thickness (the cornea is the clear part of the front of the eye). None of these tests are painful. In addition, we check your eye pressure without the air puff method! After all of these tests, the doctor examines you thoroughly and correlates his findings with those of the tests, putting it all together into a comprehensive recommendation for you.
There are many ways to treat glaucoma, but most involve either eye drops or laser treatments or both in order to lower the eye pressure. In some cases, surgery might be necessary to accomplish this goal. The doctor will guide you through this process, so do not hesitate to come in for a glaucoma evaluation. It is much better to know and to treat it rather than to wait until you have irreversibly lost significant vision.