Follow Us:

World Glaucoma Week: Are You At Risk For Glaucoma?

World Glaucoma Week: Are You At Risk For Glaucoma?

Glaucoma is a group of eye conditions that lead to damage of the optic nerve and impaired vision. Damage to the optic nerve due to glaucoma is typically caused by pressure in the eye. There are two main types of glaucoma: primary open-angle glaucoma and acute angle-closure glaucoma. Primary open-angle glaucoma develops slowly and tends not to present symptoms until the optic nerve is already damaged and vision loss has begun. Acute angle-closure glaucoma tends to develop rapidly and is very painful. This type of glaucoma is considered an eye emergency and needs to be addressed right away. There is still much to be learned about this eye condition, including the cause, but we do know that some factors put people at a higher risk of developing glaucoma.

Factors That Increase Risk Of Glaucoma

Glaucoma is most common in those over 60. Although the onset of glaucoma is typically diagnosed in this age group, it is possible, though rare, to develop glaucoma as a child. Guidelines recommend that glaucoma screening every three years should begin at age 40, every two years from age 50, and every year for those 60 and older. If you have multiple risk factors, your optometrist may recommend screening earlier than 40 or more frequently than general guidelines suggest. 

Black Canadians are more likely to develop glaucoma due in part to the prevalence of thinner corneas among those of African and Caribbean descent. This can lead to glaucoma developing at a younger age, making glaucoma screenings recommended as early as 35 years old for this group. Glaucoma is 3 to 4 times more likely to occur in black Canadians than in white Canadians, who have the lowest rates of glaucoma. Angle closure glaucoma is most common in those of Asian or Inuit descent. A certain type of open-angle glaucoma called pseudoexfoliation glaucoma was found to be most common in people of Scandinavian descent.

Family Eye Health History
Glaucoma is suspected to be hereditary. If one of your parents has glaucoma, the chances that you will develop it are increased.

Pre Existing Conditions
Diabetes, high blood pressure, and heart disease have all been linked to glaucoma. Any condition that may cause abnormal blood vessels or insufficient circulation may be contributing factors to the development of glaucoma.

Injury To Eye
Sudden trauma to the eye can cause acute-angle glaucoma, where there is a sudden pressure buildup in the eye due to the iris and cornea moving closer together. Physical injury to the eye can also trigger slower progressing open-angle glaucoma that may not present itself right away.

Eye-Related Risks
The physical characteristics of your eye can influence your risk to develop glaucoma. If you have a thin cornea or a sensitive optic nerve you are at a higher risk. Any other eye health issues you may have could also play a role in developing glaucoma. Detached retinas, eye tumors, or eye inflammation all have the potential to trigger glaucoma.

Corticosteroid Use
This includes cortisone, hydrocortisone, and prednisone. The use of any of these for an extended period may put some people at risk of developing secondary glaucoma.

Glaucoma Screening In NW Calgary

If you have one or several of the risk factors of glaucoma, contact Market Mall Optometry to arrange an eye exam and glaucoma screening in Calgary. Our professional staff will detect early signs of glaucoma and will discuss your next steps and glaucoma management. Market Mall Optometry offers a variety of treatments for glaucoma and we will be with you every step of the way so that you can preserve as much vision as possible and feel in control of your optic health. To schedule an appointment with one of our Calgary optometrists, either call 1-403-286-4884 or fill out the online contact form.


Q: Is there a cure for glaucoma?
A: No, there is not. While glaucoma can be treated and its progress slowed if it is caught early, there is no known way to restore vision or repair the optic nerve once it has been damaged. This early detection and treatment are why glaucoma screenings are so important.

Q: What are the treatment options for glaucoma?
A: While there is no known cure for glaucoma, there are treatments that can manage it. Eye drops and oral medications can be used to decrease the amount of fluid your eyes produce which will decrease pressure. There are also surgeries available that can help reduce ocular pressure.

Q: Are primary open-angle glaucoma and acute angle-closure glaucoma the only types of glaucoma?
A: No, these are just the two most common types. There is also:

  • chronic angle-closure glaucoma
  • Normal-tension glaucoma
  • Congenital glaucoma
  • Juvenile glaucoma. 

There are also variants of open-angle glaucoma, which are:

  • Secondary glaucoma
  • Pigmentary glaucoma
  • Pseudoexfoliative glaucoma
  • Traumatic glaucoma
  • Neovascular glaucoma
  • Iridocorneal endothelial syndrome (ICE)
  • Uveitic glaucoma

If you have any of these, your Calgary optometrist will inform you and will work with you to develop a treatment plan.

Share This Post:

Related Posts

Contact Market Mall Optometry Today!

We are located next to Milestones by the North entrance of Market Mall.
Our knowledgable and professional staff can answer all your questions. Call us today at 403-286-4884 or fill out the form below:

Market Mall Optometry
Have Questions? Call Us Today At

TopProductsVisit UsContact UsBook Online
TopVisit UsServicesBook OnlineCall Us