Even if visual clarity is not much affected by optic nerve compression in the early stages, severe losses and narrowing of the visual field occur. The resulting losses are irreversible. It is an insidious disease because it can progress to the last stages without affecting the clarity of vision. Unless it suddenly rises to very high levels (which is slowly progressive in most patients), it goes unnoticed by the patient. It does not cause pain or symptoms in the eye. It is understood after a detailed eye examination. In hospitals where intensive outpatient care is provided, it is very difficult to perform intraocular pressure and posterior fundus examinations individually for each patient. In such cases of intense patient presence, it can be very easily overlooked. That’s why we especially recommend our patients to have an eye exam for eye pressure screening, even if they don’t have any problems. The risk is increased in individuals with a family history of glaucoma. These patients should be monitored more frequently.
Who Gets Eye Pressure? There is no specific age limit for glaucoma. It can be congenital or occur in early childhood. However, it is more common over the age of 40. For this reason, even if every person over the age of 40 has no family history of eye pressure, it is helpful to have an eye pressure screening test once a year at worst. Eye pressure can vary within hours, as can arm pressure. Even if the eye blood pressure readings are normal in some of our patients, the current blood pressure may be in a state that can damage the optic nerve. Particular attention should be paid to these conditions called ‘normotensive glaucoma’. How is eye pressure determined? We use various tests in the detection and follow-up of our patients with eye pressure. Tests such as visual field, retinal nerve fiber analysis, and OCT help us understand the extent of glaucoma. Eye pressure is an insidious disease. It can be easily overlooked if not particularly cared for. If diagnosed too late, it can cause blindness. It is the second leading cause of blindness in the world. With the early diagnosis and treatment of glaucoma, a preventable cause of blindness, vision can be preserved for a long time.