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  • Writer's pictureRichard Kadri-Langford

Early diagnosis key to reducing glaucoma vision impairment

Early diagnosis is key to reducing glaucoma vision impairment because the sooner glaucoma is detected and treated, the greater the chances of preventing further damage to the optic nerve. That is why regular eye tests are recommended, particularly from the age of forty onwards. Simply, early identification leads to early intervention.

Glaucoma is the leading cause of blindness worldwide, affecting some 3.5% of those aged over forty [1] but 10% of those aged over 90. It occurs when a build-up of pressure in the eye causes damage to the optic nerve.

The primary aim of glaucoma treatment is to reduce the abnormal pressure in the eye. The type of treatment offered will depend on the nature and severity of the condition. Early diagnosis could mean that medication in the form of regularly applied eye drops is sufficient to manage the condition. [2] Other options available include laser treatment or surgery.

Alongside these direct interventions, more comprehensive treatment plans may look toward reducing the impact of specific conditions which can predispose individuals to develop glaucoma. For example, certain corticosteroids or antidepressants have been linked to an increased risk of glaucoma [3], so a revision in existing medications may be required. Other conditions such as diabetes or high blood pressure are also risk factors. As a result, those being treated for glaucoma may also need to review their overall health plans.

Occuity is working on the PM1, the world's only non-contact, handheld pachymeter, to allow both clinicians and technicians to take a corneal centre thickness measurement quickly and easily. The PM1 will assist in the earlier, faster, and more accurate diagnosis of glaucoma, allowing patients to prevent vision loss through timely diagnosis and appropriate treatment.

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