Saturday, January 31, 2015
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Be on the lookout for glaucoma

By
From page D4 | January 27, 2013 |

For those of us who are able to see, it is easy to take our vision for granted.

Maybe we need to use contacts or glasses. Maybe we curse the fact we have to wear bifocals or reading glasses; but at least we can see. Many people who have lost their vision would give anything to have to wear bifocals or reading glasses. Vision is one of our most precious senses, yet it is also one that can be taken away. The second leading cause of blindness, after cataracts, is glaucoma.

Glaucoma affects more than 3 million people in the U.S. Many with glaucoma do not know they have the condition, though there are easy ways to check for it. For these folks, glaucoma is a time bomb which could lead to blindness if not identified and treated.

What is glaucoma? It is increased pressure inside the eye. This high pressure damages the optic nerve – the main nerve connecting the eye to the brain. If the optic nerve is injured, a person’s vision suffers, and one can become completely blind.

One reason glaucoma is so dangerous is usually it does not cause symptoms. If you have glaucoma, your eyes do not hurt. They are not red, and in the early stages your vision may seem to be fine, but the increased pressure inside your eye is silently hurting the optic nerve.

When a person with glaucoma does notice a problem with their vision, it is usually blurriness at the edge of vision. You can see things clearly if you’re looking straight at them, but things at the margins start to get blurry. This is referred to as “tunnel vision.” By the time you start noticing your vision getting worse, it is usually too late to repair the loss.

The good news about glaucoma is it is easy to tell if you have it. Your personal doctor, clinician or optometrist can do a simple and painless test for glaucoma. Actually, there are several ways to check for it, including looking into the back of your eye with a strong light, checking your vision carefully, or using a machine to blow air at your eye to check how much pressure it has. For those people who are at risk for developing glaucoma, it is important to be tested regularly.

Who should be worried about glaucoma? Anyone can get it, but it is more likely for some folks than others.

Glaucoma tends to develop as people get older. Being tested for it should start at around age 40, even though the risk is still small at that age. As one gets close to 55 or 60, the risk gets somewhat higher and people should be tested more often, usually about once one or two years. African-Americans have the highest rate of glaucoma of all major ethnic groups. Latinos also have a higher rate than others. Finally, glaucoma tends to run in families, so if someone in your family has it you have a higher risk.

What can be done about glaucoma? It is usually easy to treat with eye drops. Sometimes one type of eye drop is all that is needed. Some people need to be treated with two different eye drops. Occasionally, when eye drops are no longer working, laser treatments or eye surgery are necessary.

The key point here is that if you have glaucoma, it can be treated, and you can almost always avoid blindness.

So, take good care of your vision, and ask your doctor about being checked for glaucoma.

Richard Fleming, M.D, is the Regional Medical director with Partnership Healthplan of California, a member of Solano Coalition for Better Health.

Richard Fleming, MD

LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | No comments

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

  • Recent Articles

  • Enter your email address to subscribe and receive notifications of new posts by email.

  • .

    Solano News

    Solano County confirms 1st local case of measles

    By Staff and wire reports | From Page: A1, 3 Comments

     
    SPCA begins caring for more than 100 rescued dogs

    By Kevin W. Green | From Page: A1, 4 Comments | Gallery

     
    Top workers, top students – and succulent crab

    By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

     
    Partial Fairfield freeway road closure starts Monday

    By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A3

     
    DUI patrols set for Super Bowl Sunday

    By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A3

    Armijo students savor catered Fuddruckers lunch

    By Susan Hiland And Susan Winlow | From Page: A3 | Gallery

     
    Fairfield police log: Jan. 29, 2015

    By Susan Hiland | From Page: A9

     
    Suisun City police log: Jan. 29, 2015

    By Susan Hiland | From Page: A9

     
    .

    US / World

    Stanford University to get $50 million to produce vaccines

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A3

     
    Man charged in California family’s deaths will be own lawyer

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A3

    PG&E releases thousands of emails with state regulators

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

     
    Yosemite park fee hikes coming in March

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

    San Francisco coroner says human remains are from 1 man

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

     
    Balloon crew makes history crossing Pacific Ocean

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

    Murder trial begins 35 years after 6-year-old vanished in NY

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

     
    Judge: Funeral home wrongly sold Lee Harvey Oswald’s casket

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

    Jordan awaits proof hostage is alive after swap deadline

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

     
    Judge expresses doubt about constitutionality of no-fly list

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

     
    French fracture laid bare as 8-year-old praises terrorists

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

     
    US mulls Middle East-North Africa category for 2020 Census

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

     
    .

    Opinion

     
    GOP should plan for post-Obamacare world

    By Ramesh Ponnuru | From Page: A8, 16 Comments

    Editorial Cartoon: Jan. 31, 2015

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

     
    Solano College news makes me sick

    By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A8, 2 Comments

    .

    Living

    Community Calendar: Jan. 31, 2015

    By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

     
    Today in History: Jan. 31, 2015

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

    Horoscopes: Jan. 31, 2015

    By Holiday Mathis | From Page: B7

     
    My recently widowed mother is already thinking about re-marrying

    By Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar | From Page: B7

    Five ways 3D-printed food will change the way we eat

    By The Washington Post | From Page: B10, 1 Comment

     
    .

    Entertainment

    TVGrid

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

     
    List: 10 Super Bowl ads you’ll be talking about

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

    Rod McKuen, mega-selling poet and performer, dies at 81

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

     
    Miranda Lambert leads ACM Awards with 8 nominations

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

    Shakira gives birth to 2nd baby with Spanish football star

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

     
    .

    Sports

     
    Hayward, Utah Jazz upset Golden State Warriors 110-100

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

    LeBron returns, Love, Irving team for 44, as Cavs top Kings

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

     
    Mustangs ride away from Indian’s home court with 66-60 victory

    By Marcus Lomtong | From Page: B1 | Gallery

     
    Kings’ Cousins to replace Kobe Bryant in All-Star game

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

    Laird leads as Tiger shoots 82 and misses the cut

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

     
    Seau, Warner, Pace first-time Hall eligibles

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

    N.H. Speedway general manager faces lewdness charge

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

     
    Judge: Jury can watch Super Bowl unless Hernandez mentioned

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

    Blackhawks Hall of Famer Stan Mikita has brain disorder

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

     
    Ko takes lead at LPGA opener, closes in on golf history

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

    Djokovic beats Wawrinka to reach fifth Australian Open final

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

     
    Carroll says decision is Sherman’s if baby arrives early

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

    NFL’s Goodell seeks to look past ‘tough year,’ to future

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

     
    This date in sports history for Jan. 31, 2015

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

     
    .

    Business

    US consumer confidence at highest level in a decade

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

     
    Companies steering clear of Super Bowl name

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B5, 1 Comment

    .

    Obituaries

    Danica Gojkovich Ryder

    By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

     
    Anneliese Edith (Luckner) Fraser

    By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

    .

    Comics

    Sally Forth

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

     
    Get Fuzzy

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

    Wizard of Id

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

     
    For Better or Worse

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

    Beetle Bailey

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

     
    Pickles

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

    Blondie

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

     
    Zits

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

    Garfield

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

     
    Peanuts

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

    B.C.

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

     
    Dilbert

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

    Frank and Ernest

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

     
    Baldo

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

    Rose is Rose

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

     
    Baby Blues

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

    Sudoku

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B7

     
    Crossword

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B7

    Bridge

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B7

     
    Cryptoquote

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B7

    Word Sleuth

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B7

     
    .

    Home Seller 1/31/2015

    Quirky add-ons a common feature of celebrity homes

    By The Associated Press | From Page: HSR2

    Real estate transactions for Jan. 31, 2015

    By Daily Republic | From Page: HSR3

    5 ways to make a kitchen more germ-free

    By The Associated Press | From Page: HSR3

    Average US rate on 30-year mortgage rises to 3.66 percent

    By The Associated Press | From Page: HSR3