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Glaucoma Treatment in India

WHAT IS GLAUCOMA

Glaucoma is an eye disorder which causes direct damage to the optic nerve (that carries information to the brain) in the eye, leading to permanent loss in the vision in if left untreated. It is mostly due to an increase in the pressure of the eye (due to fluid in the eye) and is generally inherited. Glaucoma usually occurs in both eye but the extent of damage may vary.

Healthy Vs Glaucoma Eye
 


 

OVERVIEW OF HUMAN EYE

 

Eyes are our organ of sight. It has a number of components which include cornea, iris, pupil, lens, retina, macula, optic nerve, choroid and vitreous. 

 

Overview Of cornea

 

Cornea: It is mainly responsible for focusing the light in our eyes. It is the clear front surface of the eye, which acts like a camera lens. . The colored iris and the pupil (which is a black dot) can be seen clearly through the cornea. The cornea basically helps to focus the entering light on the retina, which is a light sensitive film, located at the back of the eye. The picture formed at retina is then passed on to the brain.

However, when the cornea is damaged or diseased it becomes less transparent or can change in shape preventing the light from reaching the retina and transmitting a distorted or an unclear image to the brain.

 

Iris: of the eye functions like the diaphragm of a camera, controlling the amount of light reaching the back of the eye by automatically adjusting the size of the pupil.

 

Accommodation: The eye's crystalline lens is located directly behind the pupil and further focuses the light, through a process called accommodation. This lens helps the eye to automatically focus on the near and approaching objects, similarly like an autofocus camera lens.

 

Retina: Light focused by the cornea and crystalline lens (and limited by the iris and pupil) reaches the retina. The retina acts like an electronic image sensor of a digital camera, converting optical images into electronic signals. The optic nerve then transmits these signals to the visual cortex, the part of the brain that controls our sense of s


 

Working of an eye
 

SYMPTOMS OF GLAUCOMA

Glaucoma is a “silent thief”. It causes damage to the eye permanently whose only symptom is weakening of eyesight by gradually darkened vision.


Glaucoma Stages

 

RISK FACTORS FOR GLAUCOMA

The risk factors for glaucoma include:

  • Age, mostly in people above 60 years of age

  • Ethnicity

  • Family history

  • Center cornea thickness less than 0.5mm

  • High myopia

  • Previous eye injury

  • Hypertension

  • Steroid users

 

DIAGNOSIS

 

Diagnosis is based on

Detailed patient history

This includes signs, symptoms and any associated risk factors

Physical examination

Through examination of the eye takes place.

Investigations

  • Tonometry test- Test of inner eye pressure.

  • Slit lamp examination- It is a method to see the eyes through an illuminated slit light (3-D view).

  • Ophthalmoscopy – To examine the shape and the color of the optic nerve.

  • Perimetry (Visual field test) - Testing your field of vision.

  • Pachymetry- Thickness of cornea

  • Gonioscopy- To examine the angle of the eye where the iris meets the cornea.

 

GLAUCOMA TREATMENT

Treatment depends on the severity of the glaucoma

Conservative management

Lifestyle modification by healthy lifestyle & regular check –ups.

Medical care

The doctor may prescribe eye drops, Laser surgery or Micro surgery

 

Eye drops

These help to reduce the formation of aqueous medium in the eye or channelize its outflow. It therefore helps in maintaining an accurate pressure in the eye by reducing the chances of optic nerve damage. Some eye drops can cause side effect like-

  • Allergy

  • Blurriness

  • Redness of the eye

  • Damage to heart and lung

 

Laser surgery

Laser surgery helps in increasing the outflow of the fluid in the eye, therefore maintaining the intraocular pressure.

Various types of laser surgery are-

  • Trabeculoplasty- in this procedure, the trabecular mesh is pulled out to increase the outflow.

  • Iridotomy- In this procedure, a small hole is made in the iris to ease the outflow of the fluid present in the eye.

  • Cyclophotocoagulation- Here laser treats area of middle eye reducing the intraocular flow.


 

Microsurgery

Microsurgery is known as trabeculotomy which is used to create drainage to reduce the intraocular pressure. The common complication of microsurgery are-

  • Infection

  • Bleeding

  • Temporary loss of vision

 

Glaucoma Treatment
 

GLAUCOMA COMPLICATIONS

The main complication of glaucoma is loss of vision, which cannot be repaired.

  • Stress and interference in day to day activities (like driving, reading etc.)

  • Anger ,guilt, frustration, depression

  • Expensive treatment (for economically deprived)

 

GLAUCOMA PREVENTION

Glaucoma can be prevented by

  • Maintaining a healthy weight.

  • Maintaining blood pressure at a normal level.

  • Don’t smoke.

  • Limit caffeine intake

  • Regular exercise

  • Preventing overexposure to sunlight

  • Get regular, comprehensive eye exams

 

GLAUCOMA TREATMENT IN INDIA

Being one of the top medical travel destinations, India provides a cost effective treatment to its international patients. The country houses numerous eminent and experienced opthalmologists and opthalmology hospitals with excellent facilities, infrastructure and modern medical technologies.

Technologies like new Keratome for Extra Thin Flap LASIK, Glaucoma Detection and Investigation Equipment, Oculoplasty Unit with surgical procedures for plastic surgery of the eye are all equipped within the opthalmogy hospitals.

 

Know More: 

 

Cost of Glaucoma Surgery in India

Glaucoma treatment in India is much affordable than in any other country. The cost of its treatment in India is approximately USD 1000 - 1500. 

 

REFERENCES

Author Name
Dr Pooja Chaudhary

Published Date
: 01-Aug-2016

Dr. Pooja Chaudhary is a well known health blogger. She writes for some of the well known medical sites in India and US.

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