If you have been experiencing significant eye pressure or changes in vision, you may be wondering how to find a glaucoma specialist in Houston. It is estimated that more than two million Americans have no idea that they have some form of glaucoma, the second leading cause of blindness worldwide. Those affected can remain asymptomatic for years, making it exceedingly difficult to catch before damage is done.
The Houston glaucoma specialists at Eye Center of Texas are here to tell you a little more about glaucoma’s variations, symptoms, and risk factors — and where to go for a wide variety of quality treatment options.
Symptoms of glaucoma
How do you know if you have glaucoma? Because glaucoma can be symptomless, it is important that those concerned about their eye health see a Houston glaucoma specialist and ask questions about their eye health. When glaucoma does present symptoms, they can look like this:
- Vision loss
- Blurred vision, narrowed vision
- Eye pressure
Regular eye exams are your first line of defense against glaucoma. Your eye doctor can identify risk factors that may increase your chances of developing glaucoma and conduct tests to detect the disease before it can cause too much damage to your vision.
Types of glaucoma
There are four types of glaucoma, with two being more prevalent than others:
- Open-angle glaucoma is the most common type of glaucoma. It is caused by improper drainage of the canals through which aqueous fluids drain. Eye pressure from lack of drainage will increase over time, eventually damaging the optic nerve.
- Angle-closure glaucoma is the more rare, acute version of open-angle glaucoma. Patients suffering from angle-closure glaucoma often suffer from nausea, headaches, and vision interruptions.
- Normal-tension glaucoma is a bit of a mystery. It functions similarly to open-angle glaucoma, but it develops under normal eye conditions, i.e., not under abnormal pressure.
- Secondary glaucoma is when glaucoma is brought about by a secondary condition, such as diabetes, cataracts, or tumors.
Can early signs of glaucoma be reversed? Although there are no miracle cures, glaucoma can be stopped from progressing if caught in the early stages. Home remedies for cataracts and glaucoma don’t really exist, although simple things like maintaining a healthy diet and avoiding smoking are considered preventative.
What kind of doctor treats a patient with glaucoma?
If you are looking for an eye doctor to treat glaucoma, an ophthalmologist is who you need. Ophthalmologists can both diagnose and treat glaucoma by performing eye exams and surgeries. They can also diagnose wet or dry macular degeneration and a host of other common eye diseases.
Glaucoma treatments are focused on relieving pressure caused by liquid buildup in the eye. There is no cure for glaucoma, so treatment usually refers to prescription medication that makes it more bearable to live with glaucoma, or patients can undergo surgery.
There are a few types of glaucoma surgery:
- Selective laser trabeculoplasty (SLT) is a laser treatment for glaucoma in which a laser creates small holes to relieve intraocular pressure. This procedure is quick and painless, according to most patients.
- Filtration surgery (trabeculectomy) is similar to SLT but without the laser. Instead, the surgeon makes a small incision to relieve the pressure. This surgery has a very high success rate and has more long-lasting results than SLT.
- Shunts or implants, like the iStent medical implant, can be inserted manually that allow the eye to drain properly.
Glaucoma surgery recovery time is relatively short compared to other eye surgeries, usually lasting only 3-6 weeks, and is reportedly not highly painful or uncomfortable. Patients are encouraged to avoid strenuous activity and protect their eyes from harsh conditions during recovery. Patients can generally return back to normal activity only a day or two after the procedure.
See a glaucoma specialist in Houston at Eye Center of Texas
If you are looking for a glaucoma specialist in Houston, look no further than Eye Center of Texas, where many of the top eye surgeons in Houston can get to work on correcting your vision. The surgeons at Eye Center of Texas perform cataract surgery, LASIK surgery, and corneal surgery, in addition to the many options for glaucoma surgery.
Don’t let glaucoma go undetected, call us at 713-797-1010 or make an appointment online to see an ophthalmologist today.
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