Irving Estrin, M.D.
Assistant Medical Director
This month is Glaucoma Awareness month, which is sponsored by the American Academy of Ophthalmology.
The diagnosis of glaucoma is something that is very difficult for most people to grasp. Glaucoma is one of the leading causes of blindness in the United States.Most of the patients who presently have glaucoma are totally unaware that they have this disease. Glaucoma usually is a disease that is without pain and silent when it comes to any signs or symptoms.
Most people that are diagnosed with glaucoma visited their eye doctor and came out with the surprising results of glaucoma. This unfortunately leaves many people in the United States without appropriate treatment. Most people should be aware that after age forty, they should have at least a bi-annual eye exam and by age sixty, an annual eye exam. Clinical eye diseases are detectable only through proper eye doctor examination. Since glaucoma is painless and not seen until it is fairly advanced by the patient, one should be cognizant that their eye exam should be done on a regular basis.
This disease continues to be a leading irreversible cause of blindness unless detected and treated at an early stage in its development. About one out of six people in the United States will develop glaucoma at some point in their lives. I suggest there should be an eye exam done on a regular basis through their eye care professional and starting in their early forties.