Glaucoma is the leading cause of blindness and visual impairment in the United States. A simple painless eye exam can detect the disease. With early detection and treatment, glaucoma can usually be controlled and blindness prevented.
Glaucoma can affect anyone from newborn infants to the elderly. It has been estimated that up to 3 million Americans have glaucoma. At least half of those people do not know they have it because glaucoma usually has no symptoms. People who are at a greater risk for glaucoma usually have the following conditions:
- At least 45 years old without regular eye exams
- A family history of glaucoma
- Abnormally high eye pressure
- African descent
- Previous eye injury
- Regular, long-term use of cortisone / steroid products
To detect glaucoma, Dr. Foreman will test your visual acuity, test the pressure in your eye and dilate your pupils. He will also test your peripheral vision with a visual field and analyze your optic nerves. Regular and complete eye exams help to monitor the changes in your eyesight and will help to determine whether you may develop glaucoma. Dr. Foreman uses the Zeiss Stratus OCT™, the Humphrey ® Field Analyzer, and the Optos Fundus Camera to detect and test for glaucoma. In addition, Dr. Foreman uses the new SITA SWAP software on the visual field machine and Diopsys for early detection of glaucoma.
Treatment to control glaucoma include medications in the form of either eye drops or pills, SLT laser surgery and ISTENT surgery.
Diopsys® ERG tests use electroretinography (ERG) technology to help eye care specialists gain objective, functional information about the performance of the inner retinal cells of the eye, especially in the macula. Diopsys offers two ERG modules – Contrast Sensitivity and Concentric Stimulus Fields.
Diopsys® VEP tests use a technology called Visual Evoked Potential (VEP) to objectively measure the functional responses of the entire visual pathway from the anterior segment of the eye to the visual cortex. Diopsys offers two VEP modules – Multi-Contrast(LX) and User-Defined.
For more information on Diopsys see http://www.diopsys.com/.
Optical Coherence Tomography
The swift and painless OCT ( Optical Coherence Tomography) exam can detect the development of glaucoma and retinal disease years earlier than other available technologies. This is made possible by studying damage to the optic nerve caused by glaucoma and retinal disease before you lose a ny vision.
During the exam, you simply lean into the OCT instrument and look at a light. A harmless laser scans the back of your eye and forms an image in under one second. The entire procedure may be over in less than a minute. It is non-intrusive and often does not require pupil dilation.
Exam results take the shape of a color-coded “thickness map” of the retinal nerve fiber layer and optic nerve in your eye. In addition your information is tabulated and compared to a normative data bank. This supplies your physician with information about the health of your eyes that cannot be obtained from other exams.
Selective Laser Trabeculoplasty
Selective Laser Trabeculoplasty, or SLT, is a form of laser surgery that is used to lower intraocular pressure in glaucoma.
For more information on SLT Laser see http://www.glaucoma.org/.
The iStent® is a tiny medical implant-the smallest known to be implanted in the human body-that is designed to restore your eye’s natural ability to drain fluid out of the eye to reduce glaucoma pressure.
For more information on ISTENT see http://www.glaukos.com/istent-procedure/.