Glaucoma is often called “the silent thief of sight” as it can steal your vision without you even knowing it. Glaucoma is the leading cause of blindness in the United States. The progression of the disease is very slow, so you may not even notice the changes in your vision before irreversible damage has already occurred. This can be prevented. Sierra Nevada Eye Center recommends regular eye examinations to detect and treat early symptoms of glaucoma as well as other potential eye problems.
Sierra Nevada Eye Center provides expertise in the diagnosis and management of glaucoma. Dr. Robert Wolff and Dr. Michael Westafer have extensive experience in glaucoma care and surgery. As a fellowship-trained glaucoma specialist, Dr. Westafer specializes in the treatment of all forms of glaucoma. Click here or call to schedule an appointment with the best glaucoma specialists in Nevada.
What is glaucoma?
Glaucoma is an eye disease that damages the optic nerve (which connects the back of the eye to the brain), often associated with high pressure in the eye. There are many different types of glaucoma; the two basic types of glaucoma are primary open angle glaucoma (POAG) and angle-closure glaucoma. POAG is the most common type; the cause of POAG is not yet known, and there is no cure.
What are the symptoms of glaucoma?
POAG is usually chronic and painless; angle-closure glaucoma may develop rapidly and result in eye pain. And because glaucoma damages the peripheral vision first, most patients do not know they have POAG until they are checked by an eye doctor. As glaucoma damage to the optic nerve progresses, loss of peripheral vision leads to tunnel vision, then blindness. Glaucoma damage is permanent and cannot be reversed.
How is glaucoma diagnosed?
Glaucoma is detectable with an eye exam and special testing. Evaluation includes measurement of vision, intraocular pressure (IOP), corneal thickness, gonioscopy (to check the drainage tissue in the eye), and optic nerve function. We use the most advanced technology and equipment to assess optic nerve function, including visual field testing to check peripheral vision damage, and optical coherence tomography (OCT) to evaluate optic nerve tissue damage. Since there can be a genetic component to glaucoma, family members may need to be tested as well.