Glaucoma is a disease that affects the optic nerve and is caused by a progressive increase of intraocular pressure, resulting in a visual impairment. The vision alteration may have different, even irreversible stages of seriousness, and shows up when the outflow of the liquid called aqueous humour, flowing in the eyeball, is obstructed and accumulates, thus increasing intraocular pressure.

The importance of preventing and diagnosing glaucoma
During the initial stages, non-congenital glaucoma may not present with symptoms and only show up only when a significant damage of the visual field occurs.
However, there are some factors of risk that may increase the probability of contracting this disease, such as an age above 50 years, previous cases of glaucoma in the family, myopia, diabetes, eye traumas, extended use of cortisone, arterial hypertension.
The early diagnosis of glaucoma is essential to prevent visual impairments and blindness. Accurate eye and diagnosis examinations are recommended after the age of 40 years.

Treatment of glaucoma
Glaucoma is a serious eye disease but can be treated and controlled with a proper treatment and monitoring all life long.
The first therapeutic choice is usually eye drops that lower eye pressure and prevent the progression of the optic nerve damage.
Eye drops must be used all life long and have some side effects both at local, such as irritation, redness and iris colour change, and systemic level, such as asthma, bradycardia and hypotension.
When medical treatment is not sufficient anymore, laser is the next step. The type of laser depends on whether glaucoma is open-angle or closed-angle. The surgery lasts a few minutes and is totally painless. The eye is not bandaged and patients can immediately resume their normal activities.
When the medical or laser treatment cannot keep eye pressure at a safe level, the surgical intervention is the only option.