Glaucoma is considered a high-risk eye disease because it is the leading cause of preventable blindness. In the United States, over 4 million Americans suffer with glaucoma, of which 120,000 are considered legally blind. Approximately 70 million people worldwide have some form of glaucoma and experts estimate that about half of them are unaware that glaucoma is the cause of their vision loss.
Unfortunately, this is a disease that becomes more prevalent with age, but that does not mean younger generations are safe. People of African or Latino descent also find themselves in high-risk groups. In fact, glaucoma is six to eight times more common in African Americans than Caucasians. Other high-risk groups include people with diabetes and people who have a family history with glaucoma.
Glaucoma is considered an incurable disease because once vision is gone it cannot be restored. However, with proper medication, vision loss can be slowed or even prevented. Your eye care provider can perform a simple test to determine if you have glaucoma and will choose the correct treatment.
Early detection is key to preserving your sight, so call your eye care provider today to set up a comprehensive eye exam and have your eyes checked for this sight-stealing disease!
Statistics were collected from the Glaucoma Research Foundation.