Glaucoma is a disease of the optic nerve. It is usually associated with an elevated intraocular pressure, though not always. With this disease, the peripheral vision is affected first so in many cases patients do not know they even have this disease. By the time it starts to affect the central vision, it is far too late.

For this reason, glaucoma is routinely screened for by optometrists and ophthalmologist during routine examinations. If there is any suggestion of glaucoma, it will be assessed and, if required, treated.

The assessment will involve having a test that both maps the visual field (Humphrey visual field test) and also optic nerve imaging studies using an OCT (optical coherence tomography).

If treatment is necessary, this is in the form of intraocular pressure lowering. This can be achieved through either drops, using laser or, in rare cases, surgery.


Hunter Eye Hospital