Glaucoma - Treatment Overview
Surgery may be done to make another opening for fluid to
leave the eye. Sometimes, surgery to destroy part of the eye that produces the
fluid (ciliary body) may also be used to decrease fluid production. This type
of surgery is usually done only for advanced cases of glaucoma in which other
forms of treatment have not been effective.
What to Think About
Glaucoma cannot be cured, but
the pressure inside the eye (intraocular pressure, or IOP) can be controlled
with medicines, surgery, or both. In adults, treatment for glaucoma cannot
restore eyesight that has been lost because of the condition, but it can
prevent further damage to the optic nerve and save remaining eyesight. In
certain children with congenital glaucoma, some of the optic nerve damage
caused by the disease can be reversed with treatment.
(most often eyedrops) are usually needed to treat glaucoma. In most cases, they
have to be used every day for the rest of your life. Putting eyedrops in the
eye at specific times of the day may be inconvenient. For some people, eyedrops
can also cause discomfort. You will need to follow the prescribed daily
schedule for your eyedrops in order for them to work properly.
Unlike some chronic diseases in which failure to take medicines causes
noticeable symptoms, not using your glaucoma medicines as prescribed will not
usually cause any obvious symptoms. But it may cause slow, often unnoticed loss
of eyesight that is permanent and that could eventually lead to
Because glaucoma can't be cured and treatment does not
always prevent further loss of vision, people may try alternative
unproven treatment methods, such as acupuncture or
marijuana. But most of these alternative treatments either have not been
studied or have not been proven to work. Such treatments may be expensive, and
some can be hazardous to your health.