Glaucoma Doctors in Cape Coral
Loss of vision from glaucoma is preventable with early treatment. The highly skilled doctors at Elmquist Eye Group in Cape Coral can help you explore both non-surgical and state-of-the-art laser and surgical options to treat the disease.
Elmquist Eye Group has served Southwest Florida since 1992. E. Trevor Elmquist, DO, his partner, Kate Wagner, OD, and his associates Sarah Eccles-Brown, MD and Nina Burt, OD, provide a complete range of services, including comprehensive eye exams and diagnosis and treatment of macular degeneration, cataracts, diabetic eye disease, glaucoma, dry eyes and other eye conditions.
Facts About Glaucoma
- There is no cure for glaucoma, and lost vision cannot be restored.
- Worldwide, glaucoma is the second leading cause of blindness (after cataracts), according to the World Health Organization.
- Over 3 million Americans are estimated to have glaucoma, and 2.7 million of them (age 40 and older) are affected by open-angle glaucoma, its most common form.
- Open-angle glaucoma typically has no symptoms, pain or warning signs.
- Closed-angle glaucoma, the rarer form of the disease, is a medical emergency. If not treated immediately, blindness can quickly result.
- Glaucoma is 15 times more likely to cause blindness in African Americans than in Caucasians.
- The risk of glaucoma rises rapidly in Hispanics over age 60.
- Nearly half of the individuals who have glaucoma don’t know they have it.
How Is Glaucoma Detected?
Getting a comprehensive dilated eye exam is the most important thing you can do to detect the disease before it damages your vision. When diagnosed and treated at an early stage, glaucoma can be controlled.
A glaucoma screening that checks only the eye pressure is not sufficient. At Elmquist Eye Group, we will use drops to dilate the pupil of your eye to examine your optic nerve and other diagnostic tests to visualize and assess any damage to the optic nerve.
We may also inspect the drainage structure of your eye, analyze the optic nerve by means of a scanning laser, take optic nerve photos, measure the corneal thickness, and test the visual fields of each eye.
Glaucoma Treatment Options
Each person’s eyes are unique, and the treatment for glaucoma will depend upon the nature and severity of the disease. Although glaucoma cannot be cured, when detected and treated at an early stage, it can be controlled.
For most people, eye drops are the primary treatment. However, surgery may be recommended to prevent further progression of optic nerve damage.
Conventional Surgery: If medications and laser treatment have not successfully lowered eye pressure, your ophthalmologist may recommend conventional surgery, the most common of which is called trabeculectomy. It involves creating a new bypass drainage channel so that fluid can drain from the eye and eye pressure can be reduced. This procedure is used in both open-angle and closed-angle glaucoma.
Laser Surgery: Laser surgery can be effective in treating glaucoma. In the case of open-angle glaucoma, the most common form of the disease, the laser surgery is called trabeculoplasty and is used to improve the process of fluid drainage from the eye to control internal eye pressure. In the case of closed-angle glaucoma, laser surgery called iridotomy is often used for people who have narrow drainage angles or have had closed-angle glaucoma in only one eye.
If you live or work in Cape Coral and would like more information about glaucoma diagnosis or treatment, the doctors at Elmquist Eye Group can help. Get in touch with us today at (239) 936-2020 to schedule an appointment.