PIKEVILLE - Have you recently noticed an increase in eye pressure?
If so, don’t ignore it.
Increased eye pressure is one of the few symptoms of glaucoma. January is National Glaucoma Awareness Month and Pikeville Medical Center wants the public to be informed about this disease.
Affecting more than 2.2 million Americans, glaucoma damages the optic nerve by slowly building up pressure in the eye. When the optic nerve is damaged, it can lead to blindness.
In its early stages, glaucoma is difficult to detect.
â€œThe only way to know if you have glaucoma is to get your eyes checked by an eye care professional,â€ said Pikeville Medical Center Ophthalmologist Keith Ison.
A complete eye examination is recommended at least every two years, while diabetics are advised to have a dilated eye exam annually.
There are three different types of glaucoma, each with its own set of symptoms. Below is a list of each along with the warning signs, according to PubMed Health.
Most people have no symptoms
â€¢Slow loss of side (peripheral) vision
Symptoms may come and go or steadily become worse
â€¢Sudden, severe pain in one eye
â€¢Rainbow-like halos around lights
â€¢Eyes feel swollen
â€¢Cloudiness in the front of the eye
â€¢Enlargement of one or both eyes
â€¢Sensitivity to light
Individuals with a higher risk for developing glaucoma include those over 60 years of age, those who have family members diagnosed with the condition, diabetics, or people who are severely nearsighted.
Although there is no cure, the disease can be treated. Once a patient has been diagnosed, medication and/or surgery may help lower pressure in the eyes and stop further damage.
If you are experiencing any of the above symptoms, contact a local optometrist/ophthalmologist.
Dr. Ison offers glaucoma diagnoses and treatment.
His office is located in Suite 203 of the Grace Call Building at 1098 South Mayo Trail, Pikeville.
To make an appointment with Dr. Ison, call 606-218-6390.
Glaucoma Research Foundation â€“ http://www.glaucoma.org