Untreated glaucoma can lead to irreversible blindness.
It is estimated that more than 600,000 people suffer from glaucoma in the UK.
Every one in 200 people aged 40 have glaucoma which rises to one in 8 by the age of 80.
Family members of those with glaucoma have a ten fold risk of getting glaucoma themselves.
What is Glaucoma?
Glaucoma is an eye condition where the optic nerve, which connects the eye to the brain becomes damaged. It is usually caused by fluid building up in the front part of the eye which increases the pressure inside the eye.
It is usually painless and does not pose any initial symptoms as it tends to develop slowly over a number of years.
When symptoms do occur, some common symptoms can be:
- Blurred vision
- Seeing rainbow coloured circles around bright lights
- Both eyes are usually affected, however it may be worse in one eye
Some very occasional symptoms can be:
- Intense eye pain
- A red eye
- Tenderness around the eye
The Good News
Glaucoma can usually be detected during a routine eye test at your opticians, sometimes before it causes any noticeable symptoms. It is recommended that adults have regular eye tests and adults over the age of 40 visit their optician every two years.
An optician may transfer a patient to hospital if they feel they are at an increased risk of glaucoma.
It is important that a diagnosis is made quickly to allow treatment to protect vision.
It is not possible to reverse any loss of vision that has occurred before the diagnosis of glaucoma however treatment can manage the symptoms and prevent further deterioration of vision. The various treatments can include:
- Eye drops- to reduce the pressure in the eyes.
- Laser treatment- to open blocked drainage tubes or reduce the production of fluid in the eyes.
- Surgery- to improve the drainage of fluid.
How Burnetts Can Help
If you have suffered loss of vision as a result of undiagnosed or untreated glaucoma that you feel should have been identified and treated earlier and would like to speak to someone in our team to discuss whether you may have a clinical negligence claim then please contact our Medical Negligence and Serious Injury Department on 01228 552222.