Glaucoma is a progressive disease of the optic nerve which, if left untreated, can lead to narrowing of the visual field, deterioration of the optic nerve and significant, even permanent, loss of vision. It comes without symptoms and is therefore called a “silent thief” or a “silent killer” of sight.
What is the frequency of glaucoma?
Glaucoma is the second leading cause of blindness in the world. Studies to date have shown that approximately 2-3% of the population over the age of 40 suffers from some type of glaucoma, and it is assumed that as many as 50% of cases are unrecognized. The results of a prospective study show that in 2010 the number of glaucoma patients in the world was 65.8 million, and it is predicted that in 2020 this number will be 78.6 million, while by 2040 it could grow to 111.8 million patients . Currently, more than 6 million people worldwide are blind to the effects of glaucoma.
Early detection of glaucoma
Prevention of glaucoma is not possible, but early detection of the disease and its significant slowing down is possible:
- If there is glaucoma in the family, it is recommended to do a complete glaucoma examination.
- If you are over 65, it is recommended to check your eye pressure every year even if you do not feel any symptoms.
- If the disease has already been diagnosed, it is necessary to perform control examinations and regularly use the prescribed therapy.