Open-angle glaucoma, also known as primary open-angle glaucoma (POAG), is a common yet potentially debilitating eye condition. It is characterized by the slow and progressive damage to the optic nerve, leading to a gradual loss of vision. The condition is called "open-angle" because the drainage angle within the eye remains open, despite the increasing pressure on the optic nerve.
As the most prevalent form of glaucoma, open-angle glaucoma affects millions of people worldwide. It is often referred to as the "silent thief of sight" because it usually causes no symptoms in its early stages. Consequently, individuals may not realize they have the condition until significant vision loss occurs. This makes early detection and treatment crucial to prevent irreversible damage to the optic nerve and preserve vision.
The Significance Of Regular Eye Exams
Regular eye exams are essential for maintaining good vision and overall eye health. They help detect vision problems, eye diseases, and other health concerns that may affect your vision. Many eye conditions, including open-angle glaucoma, can develop slowly over time without noticeable symptoms. Regular eye exams allow for early detection and treatment, minimizing the risk of vision loss.
Eye exams are particularly important for individuals with risk factors for open-angle glaucoma, such as a family history of the condition, advanced age, African or Hispanic ancestry, or a history of elevated intraocular pressure (IOP). Regular eye exams can help identify these risk factors and monitor any changes in eye health over time.