Acute Angle closure glaucoma

What is Acute Angle Closure Glaucoma?

Acute angle closure glaucoma is a severe form of eye disease that can rapidly cause a dangerous increase in pressure on the inside of the eye. The condition is caused when the drainage angle of the eye is suddenly blocked. When the eye’s angle is blocked, the fluid that must flow through it in order to keep the pressure in the eye stable, no longer flows. This sudden blockage can cause a rapid, dangerous increase in eye pressure, leading to a loss of vision and, in very serious cases, loss of the eye itself.

If you are experiencing sudden eye pain, redness, or decreased vision you should see an ophthalmologist or optometrist immediately. An optometrist can measure the pressure inside the eye, as well as use specialized imaging techniques to take pictures of the angle of the eye and detect any signs of angle closure. In the event of an emergency, immediately seek treatment at an emergency room or urgent care center.

Risk Factors for Acute Angle Closure Glaucoma

There are a number of factors that can make individuals more likely to experience acute angle closure glaucoma, including:

  • Age – Individuals over 40 are more likely to experience the condition
  • Eyesight – This condition is more common among individuals who are farsighted
  • Gender – Women are slightly more likely to experience this condition.
  • Race – People of Asian descent are much more likely to experience this condition

Treatment and Prevention of Acute Angle Closure Glaucoma

The treatment of acute angle closure glaucoma can vary depending on the severity of the condition and the individual’s medical history. Common treatments are:

  • Timolol eye drops – These drops are often used to reduce the amount of fluid in the eye
  • Laser iridotomy – A laser can be used to make a small hole in the iris to allow fluid to flow more easily
  • Surgery – In severe cases, a doctor may recommend surgery to allow the drainage angle to remain open

The best way to prevent acute angle closure glaucoma is to have regular eye exams done by an optometrist. This will allow any potential problems with the angle of the eye to be detected early and treated before an emergency situation arises.