Best Glaucoma Surgeons Cape Coral
Approximately three million Americans have glaucoma, and if you are one of them, you will need an eye surgeon. Fortunately, southwest Floridians can turn to Elmquist Eye Group, the best glaucoma surgeons in Cape Coral.
What is glaucoma and who is at risk?
There are several types of glaucoma, but all of them are characterized by high internal eye pressure that causes damage to the optic nerve. When that nerve is damaged, the signals that transmit between the eye and the brain are disrupted, and that results in vision loss.
Many people can have high pressure inside the eye and never develop glaucoma. Furthermore, patients who have normal eye pressure can develop glaucoma. We mostly see glaucoma in patients over age 40, with an increased occurrence in patients over age 60. In particular, individuals of African American and Hispanic descent are most at risk, as are those with a family history of any type of glaucoma.
Will I need surgery?
Once glaucoma has started to occur, we cannot correct any vision loss that has already occurred, but we can offer treatment to prevent any further loss of vision. As is the case in so many diseases, early detection is key and annual eye exams are particularly important, especially if you are in one or more of the high-risk groups. In a detailed eye exam, our professionals can examine the optic nerve for damage, and this is often the only way to detect glaucoma early on.
We can use medications for treatment; these remedies are designed to reduce the internal eye pressure and are used in the early stages. However, surgery is often the best treatment, and we offer two types of treatment. First, we will recommend a surgery called laser trabeculoplasty. It is a low-risk procedure that we can perform in our office. It involves draining the internal eye fluid buildup to lower intraocular pressure and it is quite effective.
Sometimes, patients are not good candidates for the laser procedure, and sometimes, the laser trabeculoplasty is not successful, so we counsel our patients to have the more traditional form of glaucoma surgery. The conventional surgery involves the surgeon creating a new opening by which the eye fluid can continuously drain to keep the internal eye pressure down on a continuous basis. This procedure is also relatively low-risk, but some patients develop an infection and some may be at higher risk of later developing cataracts.
What happens after surgery?
After surgery, you will use prescription eye drops for several weeks. These medications reduce swelling and prevent infection. During recovery, we ask patients to reduce typical activities for two weeks to one month to allow the eyes time to heal. Activities like heavy lifting and strenuous exercise should be avoided.
Glaucoma surgeons ready to see you
At Elmquist Eye Group, we are here for you as a glaucoma patient. In fact, we can take care of all of your eye needs as well as the eye needs of your entire family. Please keep in mind that regular eye exams are the best method for early glaucoma detection. If you indeed do have glaucoma, the best glaucoma surgeons in Cape Coral are standing by and ready for you to be our next new patient. Give us a call today and make an appointment.