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    Old 03-15-2019, 07:51 AM   #1
    jmb0849
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    glaucoma questions

    Hi,

    I came back from the eye dr. after not going for 10 years. My eyesight is perfect 20/20 and actually has improved in 10 years (slightly). She said that I had some slight yellowing in my lenses that could develop into cataracts 5-10 years down the road. That is all good news. I am 61 years old.

    My concern is glaucoma. My pressures are good 17-18 which is where they were 10 years ago. Dr. said under 20 is where you want them to be. She then took a picture of each eye - a fundus photo I think it was called and compared the two pictures from 10 years ago till now. The optic nerve from 10 years ago showed a change in the left eye. She called it something else (optic pool??) said it looked a little deeper and longer than 10 years ago. In the right eye, she did not see much of a difference.

    So, she wants me to have a visual field test + some sort of scan. She said she is not diagnosing glaucoma but the left eye is suspicious enough to want to check out. As a result of the scan, she says they will either want to keep monitoring or start treatment. I assume if the advice is to keep monitoring it is not glaucoma yet. If it is start treatment, sounds like it means glaucoma has started. Treatment she says would be 1 drop in each eye (or maybe just the left) once before bedtime.

    Does it sound like there is glaucoma here? Can it only affect 1 eye? And, do the drops work? I thought drops were to relieve pressure, but if pressures are 17-18 why would I need drops?

     
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    Old 03-15-2019, 09:14 AM   #2
    Bleue
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    Re: glaucoma questions

    It sounds like you have good care. To address some of your questions:
    Even with 'normal' eye pressure there can be glaucomatous damage to the optic nerve. It's good she had older photos to compare the current ones to and noticed the slight change.
    The visual field test can indicate if you have any vision loss. However, it's a test that needs getting used to so the 1st one you take may have errors. Often, people who've lost some vision aren't aware that it's happened so the field test is a useful one.

    The drops work by reducing pressure in the eye. When pressure is lowered enough it can stop progression of vision loss.

    It's helpful to write down all your questions and ask them of your doctor when you see her; she has the most information and knowledge about your case.

    Good luck!

     
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    Old 03-15-2019, 10:40 AM   #3
    jmb0849
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    Re: glaucoma questions

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Bleue View Post
    It sounds like you have good care. To address some of your questions:
    Even with 'normal' eye pressure there can be glaucomatous damage to the optic nerve. It's good she had older photos to compare the current ones to and noticed the slight change.
    The visual field test can indicate if you have any vision loss. However, it's a test that needs getting used to so the 1st one you take may have errors. Often, people who've lost some vision aren't aware that it's happened so the field test is a useful one.

    The drops work by reducing pressure in the eye. When pressure is lowered enough it can stop progression of vision loss.

    It's helpful to write down all your questions and ask them of your doctor when you see her; she has the most information and knowledge about your case.

    Good luck!

    thank you for your reply - I have a couple more questions. My pressures are already 17/18, so I'm unclear why I would need drops. I did some reading and learned that pressures can vary throughout the day, but even back 10 years ago when I was going regularly pressures were always in the teens, so I'm thinking that 17/18 always has been pretty consistent. I guess that is where I'm confused.

     
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    Old 03-15-2019, 12:12 PM   #4
    Bleue
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    Re: glaucoma questions

    If there's optic nerve damage and you're diagnosed with glaucoma (as opposed to some other issue) your pressure is too high and needs to be lower. In many situations what is OK for many years is no longer OK. As we age systems become more vulnerable. So what was once satisfactory may no longer be.

    Many people with glaucoma need pressures in the single digits even though they once had pressure in the teens. It's a matter of what pressure stops the damage from progressing.

    Yes, pressure varies throughout a 24 hour period, but within a range which your doctor is aware of. The fact that it may be lower or higher at times than what the doctor obtained doesn't change anything.

     
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