Glaucoma is a disease that can not be self diagnosed.
There are a number of steps that are required to determine a diagnosis which will in turn decided on the best form of treatment.
In its early stages of Glaucoma you will not notice any symptoms.
However, it does start damaging your optic nerve right from the beginning, by the time you start to notice changes in your peripheral vision irreversible damage has been done
which is why it’s so important to diagnose it early.
Regular check ups at the optometrist are necessary for early detection and referral to an ophthalmologist for through examination is necessary
STEPS IN DIAGNOSIS
Pachymetry measures how thick your corneas are – your Central Corneal Thickness (CCT). It’s helpful to know your CCT because thickness of your cornea can affect measurements of your IOP.
This test is done using an OCT machine and you are required to look straight at a star(inter-secting lines) and a measurement is taken
Your Visual field is everything you can see at any given time – both what you are looking at directly and what you see around the edges.
If you are suspected of having Glaucoma a visual field test is an important part of checking and monitoring.
If you have glaucoma, a Visual Field Test should be taken at least twice a year, as it will help Dr Wilson assess your treatment’s effectiveness.
Tonometry measures the pressure inside your eyes. Glaucoma is usually associated with higher-than-average intraocular pressure (IOP); although in some cases a person can have glaucoma along with normal IOP.
For a tonometry test, you sit at a slit-lamp. You rest your chin and forehead on the supports and Dr Wislon moves the tonometer forward so that it briefly touches your cornea after anaesthetic drops have been applied to your eye. And a pressure reading is recorded
Dr Wilson will also examine your eyes through the slit lamp ophthalmoscope. It allows him to see the back of your eye and study the optic nerve. By the colour and appearance of the nerve, he can tell whether any damage has been done. There are many features of a damaged optic nerve that are specific to glaucoma such as the phenomenon called cupping.