Understanding the Two Major Forms of Glaucoma

by Oct 11, 2017

Keeping your intraocular pressure (IOP) at a healthy level is important in maintaining your visual health. Structural irregularities, however, may cause your eye fluids to build up, increasing your IOP. This can lead to glaucoma. In today’s post, your expert eye doctors from the Neal Eye group discusses the two types of glaucoma:

Eye Care

Primary Open-Angle Glaucoma (Wide-Angle)

Approximately 90% of all reported glaucoma cases are classified as primary open-angle. This occurs when your eye fluids fail to drain properly even though there are no obvious blockages in the draining channel. As your eye fluids build up over time, your IOP increases. This can eventually compress your optic nerve, impairing your vision. Part of why open-angle glaucoma is so dangerous is because it is often asymptomatic in its early stages. Visiting your trusted eye doctor on a regular basis is the best way to ensure that glaucoma is detected and treated promptly.

Angle-Closure Glaucoma (Narrow-Angle or Closed-Angle)

Angle-closure glaucoma occurs when the space where your eye fluids drain is blocked, causing uncontrolled fluid accumulation. As eye fluid volume rises, so does your IOP. If left unmanaged, your optic nerve may sustain damage, impairing your visual processes. While less common than open-angle glaucoma, angle-closure glaucoma is considered a medical emergency because it progresses faster. You may develop dilated pupils, distorted vision, and severe headaches. Your expert optometrist may perform traditional or laser surgery to create or improve your drainage channels, reducing your IOP levels.


If you have any further questions about the two major types of glaucoma, call us at (610) 828-9701. We serve Lafayette Hill, Norristown, and Philadelphia, PA.

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