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Angle Recession Glaucoma

Angle Recession Glaucoma Overview continued...

There are over 2.4 million eye injuries in the U.S. every year. The eye injuries that require medical care are estimated to be from 3 to 10 per 1,000 people. Traumatic injuries - whether from an accident at home, sports, assaults, or workplace hazards - are the most common cause of single-eye blindness in the U.S. Although injuries often occur to only one eye, the incidence rate of trauma to both eyes is as high as 27%.

Angle recession is one of the most common complications after eye trauma. 

Worldwide, the incidence of eye trauma is similar to that found in the U.S. As in the U.S., the exact incidence of angle recession in other countries is unclear. Most reports verify that contusional injuries (direct blows to the eye) represent most eye trauma cases, but rates of angle recession and/or traumatic glaucoma are not well documented.

Because angle recession glaucoma can have its onset years after the traumatic episode, estimating the resultant visual disability is difficult. Published data of visual outcomes following eye trauma usually only describe short-term results. The long-term incidence of significant vision loss or blindness from posttraumatic glaucoma has not been reported.

Angle recession glaucoma appears to affect all races equally. In general, African-Americans may be at an increased risk for all types of glaucoma, particularly primary open-angle glaucoma (POAG).  

  • Because of the possible relationship of POAG with angle recession glaucoma, African-Americans theoretically may be at an increased risk of glaucoma following eye trauma.
  • Among men and women, eye trauma occurs more often to men, outnumbering women by a ratio of 4 to 1. Therefore, presumably, angle recession and angle recession glaucoma develop most frequently in men.  
  • Women appear to be at a greater risk of sustaining eye injuries at home.
  • Among children, eye injuries occur more frequently in boys than in girls.

The risk of angle recession as a person gets older has not been formally described.

  • Because the onset of symptoms is often delayed following a blunt eye injury, angle recession glaucoma is not usually diagnosed until middle to late adulthood. It may even be misidentified as POAG, since angle abnormalities may not be readily evident on examination and often appear late in the disease course. A distant or even forgotten history of eye trauma, particularly common among elderly persons, may result in the condition being overlooked.

  • Among adults, the risk of injury appears to decline steeply with advancing age. Studies of urban populations have indicated that elderly persons sustained only 1.6% of eye trauma, and, for persons older than 65 years, eye injuries were most often due to a fall.

  • Angle recession glaucoma has been described in childhood, but eye trauma generally occurs during young adulthood. The annual incidence of pediatric eye injuries has been reported at 15 per 100,000 children.

WebMD Medical Reference from eMedicineHealth

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