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Definition of

Glaucoma is a group of eye conditions that damage the optic nerve, resulting in progressive vision loss. It is often associated with increased intraocular pressure (pressure within the eye) but can also occur with normal or low eye pressure.

Risk factors for


Glaucoma typically causes gradual vision loss, starting with peripheral (side) vision and progressing to central vision. Initially, the loss may be unnoticeable, but as the condition worsens, it can lead to significant visual impairment or blindness.

Some individuals with glaucoma may experience eye pain or discomfort, especially during an acute angle-closure attack. This type of glaucoma occurs when the drainage angle of the eye becomes blocked suddenly, causing a rapid increase in eye pressure.

Glaucoma can cause redness and swelling in the eyes, particularly during an acute attack. This is often accompanied by severe eye pain, headache, nausea, and vomiting.

Many people with glaucoma report seeing halos or colored rings around lights, especially at night. This can be a result of increased pressure in the eye, affecting the optics of the eye and causing light to scatter.

Glaucoma can cause blurred or hazy vision, making it difficult to see clearly. This can be particularly noticeable when reading or looking at distant objects.

One of the hallmark symptoms of glaucoma is the gradual loss of peripheral vision, also known as tunnel vision. This occurs as the optic nerve becomes progressively damaged, leading to a narrowing of the visual field.

Some individuals with glaucoma may experience increased sensitivity to light, making it uncomfortable to be in brightly lit environments.

It’s important to note that while these factors increase the risk of developing glaucoma, not everyone with these risk factors will develop the condition, and individuals without these risk factors can still develop Glaucoma. Regular eye exams and early detection are crucial for diagnosing and managing Glaucoma.

Treatment Types


The iStent is a tiny implant placed during cataract surgery to improve the eye’s natural drainage and reduce intraocular pressure. This minimally invasive procedure offers long-term benefits for patients with open-angle glaucoma.

Canaloplasty is a non-penetrating glaucoma surgery that enhances the eye’s natural drainage system using a microcatheter. It offers a comprehensive and lasting solution for patients with open-angle glaucoma.

Trabeculectomy is a traditional glaucoma surgery that creates a new drainage channel to reduce intraocular pressure. This procedure is suitable for patients with advanced glaucoma or those who have not responded to other treatments.

It is important to note that regular eye examinations are crucial for early detection and effective management of glaucoma.

Our skilled surgeons will guide you through the entire surgical process, ensuring personalized care and optimal outcomes for your glaucoma management.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Glaucoma?

 Glaucoma is a group of eye conditions that damage the optic nerve, resulting in progressive vision loss. It is often associated with increased intraocular pressure (pressure within the eye) but can also occur with normal or low eye pressure.

Anyone can develop glaucoma, but certain factors increase the risk. These include age (over 60), family history of glaucoma, African, Hispanic, or Asian heritage, certain medical conditions (diabetes, high blood pressure), and previous eye injuries or surgeries.

Yes, there are several types of glaucoma. The most common is primary open-angle glaucoma, which develops gradually. Other types include angle-closure glaucoma (caused by a sudden blockage of the drainage angle), normal-tension glaucoma (damage to the optic nerve despite normal eye pressure), and congenital glaucoma (present at birth).

In the early stages, glaucoma often has no noticeable symptoms. Vision loss typically starts with the peripheral vision, and by the time symptoms become noticeable, significant damage may have already occurred. Regular eye exams are crucial for early detection.

Glaucoma is diagnosed through a comprehensive eye examination, which may include measuring intraocular pressure, assessing the optic nerve, visual field testing, and measuring corneal thickness. Regular screenings are important, especially for those at higher risk.

 Yes, although there is no cure for glaucoma, it can be managed and further vision loss can be slowed or prevented. Treatment options include eye drops to reduce eye pressure, oral medications, laser therapy (such as trabeculoplasty or iridotomy), and surgery (such as trabeculectomy or drainage implants).

 While it may not be completely preventable, early detection and treatment can significantly reduce the risk of vision loss. Regular eye exams, maintaining a healthy lifestyle, managing other medical conditions, and protecting the eyes from injury can all help in preventing or minimizing the impact of glaucoma.


Contact Santa Monica Eye Medical Group today to schedule your consultation. Our skilled team is committed to helping you achieve your aesthetic goals with personalized care and exceptional results