Examination for Glaucoma
A lack of symptoms until the latter stages makes early diagnosis of chronic glaucoma difficult. When the symptoms appear, they are usually related with severe deterioration of the visual fields and in these cases the treatment comes late, and the damage to the optic nerve is irreversible. This is one of the reasons for going regularly to the ophthalmologist to have general reviews and rule out a possible glaucoma, especially if you are above 40, myopic and have a family history of glaucoma, etc.
Once in the clinic, we can easily diagnose the disease with a general ophthalmological examination, with special interest in the intraocular pressure measurement and the optic nerve appearance, and visual fields. To complete the examination sometimes we do other special tests such as HRT or OCT.
In contrast, a patient with acute glaucoma will present much earlier, with higher levels of eye pressure and other symptoms, and will be treated before there is permanent nerve damage.
More about the different types of Glaucoma
Chronic glaucoma is the most common chronic ophthalmological condition, and also one of the most common causes of treatable blindness in the world.
Angle glaucoma is a rarer type that causes higher levels of eye pressure, usually symptomatic with pain and redness. This is rarer than the chronic type.