Glaucoma is a group of diseases with characteristic optic nerve damage, resulting in irreversible loss of vision. Most, but not all of these diseases are characterised by raised pressure in the eye (intraocular pressure). The level of pressure that causes damage can vary in different individuals and the resistance level of the optic nerve.
Glaucoma is known as the ‘silent thief of sight’ as the initial vision loss is mainly peripheral and not readily noticeable. Central vision and reading vision are usually spared until later.
The patient may not experience any symptoms until late in the disease when most of the vision has already been irreversibly lost.
Vision with glaucoma
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