Treatment of Glaucoma

Treatment of Glaucoma



Glaucoma is a disease that damages the visual nerve of your eye and worsens over time. This is often associated with the accumulation of pressure inside the eye. Glaucoma has a tendency to be hereditary and cannot appear until old age.

Increased pressure which is known as intraocular pressure has the ability to cause damage to the optic nerve.  This is the part of the eye that sends images to the brain. In the event that the damage persists, glaucoma can cause permanent loss of vision. If left untreated, glaucoma can result in complete permanent blindness for several years.

A lot of people suffering from glaucoma have no symptoms or pain at an early stage. As a result of this, it is vital to consult your doctor on a regular basis so that diagnosis can be done and glaucoma can be treated before it metamorphosis to permanent loss of vision.

On the off chance that you are more than 40 years and have a family history of glaucoma, you should have an eye examination with an ophthalmologist every 1 to 2 years. If you have health problems such as diabetes or family history of glaucoma or if you are at risk of other eye diseases, you may have to go for eye exam more often.

How is glaucoma treated?

There are a number of ways which can be adopted to treat glaucoma some of which include and not limited to eye drops, pills, laser surgery, traditional surgery or a combination of these methods. Your doctor has many options some of which are briefly explained below:

Eye drops

Glaucoma treatment often starts with eye drops. This can help reduce pressure on the eye by improving the way fluid flows from your eye or reducing the amount of fluid your eye produces. Depending on the level of eye pressure required, it may be necessary to prescribe more than one eye drops.

Below are some prescriptive eyedrop medications:

1. Prostaglandins

This increases the release of fluid in the eyes (aqueous humor), thus reducing the pressure of the eye. Medications in this category include latanoprost (Xalatan), travoprost (Travatan Z), tafluprost (Zioptan), bimatoprost (Lumigan) and latanoprostene bunod (Vyzulta).

Some side effects which have been linked with this eyedrop include mild reddening and eye pain, darkening of the iris, darkening of the pigment of the eyelashes or eyelid skin and blurred vision. This class of medicines is prescribed for everyday use.

2. Beta blockers

This type of eyedrop reduces the production of fluid in your eyes, thus reducing eye pressure (intraocular pressure). Examples include timolol (Betimol, Istalol, Timoptic) and Betaxolol (Betoptic).

Possible side effects are difficulty breathing, slow heartbeat, low blood pressure, and fatigue. This class of medications can be prescribed for use once or twice a day, depending on your condition.

3. Alpha-adrenergic agonists

They reduce the production of aqueous humor and increase the fluid flow into your eyes. Examples are apraclonidine (iopidine) and brimonidine (Alphagan P, Qoliana).

Some of the likely side effects include irregular heart rate, high blood pressure, tiredness, red eyes, itching or swollen eyes and dry mouth. This type of medication is usually prescribed for use twice a day, but can sometimes be prescribed three times a day.

  1. Carbonic anhydrase inhibitors

These types of eyedrop work by reducing the production of fluid in your eyes. Examples include dorzolamide (Trusopt) and brinzolamide (Azopt). Some side effects include and not limited to metallic tastes, frequent urination and tingling in the fingers and toes. This type of medication is usually prescribed for use twice a day, but can sometimes be prescribed three times a day.

2. Rho kinase inhibitor

This drug reduces eye pressure by removing the Rho kinase enzymes which are responsible for increasing the fluid. It is available as netarsudil (Rhopressa) and is prescribed for everyday use. Possible side effects include eye redness, eye discomfort, and cornea.

3. Miotic or cholinergic agents

This increases the liquid flow in the eye. An example is pilocarpine (Isopto Carpine). Side effects include headaches, painful eyes, smaller pupils, possible blurred or dim vision and nearsightedness. This class of drugs is usually prescribed for use up to four times a day.

In the event that the use of the only eye drops as proved to be abortive, oral medications can also be prescribed by your doctor, in this case, the common example of oral medication is carbonic anhydrase inhibitor. Possible side effects include frequent urination, tingling in the fingers and toes, depression, stomach upset, and kidney stones.

Surgery and other therapies

Another treatment option for glaucoma is surgical operations which include and not limited to laser therapy and various surgical procedures. The techniques listed below are intended to improve drainage of the fluid in the eye, which reduces the pressure:

  1. Laser Therapy

Laser trabeculoplasty is an option if you are suffering from open-angle glaucoma. This is carried out in the office of your doctor. Your doctor uses a small laser beam to open the blocked channels in the trabecular gland. It may take several weeks before the effects of this procedure become apparent.

2. Filtering surgery

With a surgical procedure which is known as trabeculectomy, your surgeon creates an opening in the white part of the eye (sclera) and excise part of the trabecular meshwork.

3. Drainage tubes

This procedure involves the insertion of a small tube shunt into your eye by your ophthalmologist, this is done to drain excess fluid and reduce your eye pressure.

4. Minimally invasive glaucoma surgery (MIGS)

Your doctor may suggest a MIGS procedure to reduce eye pressure. These procedures usually require less immediate postoperative care and are less risky than trabeculectomy or the installation of a drainage device. They are often associated with cataract surgery. Numerous MIGS techniques are available, and your doctor will talk to you about the procedure to be followed.

After surgery, you will need to visit your doctor for follow-up exams. You may need to go through additional procedures if your eye pressure begins to increase or if other changes manifest in your eyes.

How much does the abroad treatment of glaucoma cost?

In general, the cost of treatment of glaucoma varies depending on the choice of the patient which can be medication, laser or infiltration surgery. The cost of medication in the United States on average is about $ 1,000 per year, depending on the type of medication/ eyedrops brand / generic. The average price of the laser is between $ 1,500 and $ 5,000, and the laser operation is between $ 7,300 and $ 11,300. Treatment of glaucoma is usually covered by health insurance, and the patient has to pay much less in the form of copays. Patients who are not covered by health insurance may contact their doctor in order to obtain health insurance benefits.

Croatian Eye Clinics offers glaucoma treatments for the cost of