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Shaaf Eye Center is proud to offer individualized treatment options for those living with glaucoma. As true partners in your eye care, our team will work with you to choose the safest, lowest-risk, and most effective solutions to maximize your treatment outcomes. From eye medications to laser procedures, to surgical interventions, including micro-invasive glaucoma surgery, the ophthalmologists at Shaaf Eye Center can help preserve your vision for as long as possible. Schedule an appointment today and learn how the doctors at Shaaf Eye Center can help manage your glaucoma!

What is Glaucoma?

Glaucoma is a group of eye conditions that damage the optic nerve, the health of which is vital for good vision. This damage is caused by an abnormally high pressure in your eye. High eye pressure can be caused by excessive aqueous humor production or inadequate aqueous drainage. While glaucoma can occur at any age, it is more common in older adults and is one of the leading causes of blindness for people over the age of 60. The goal of treatment is to slow the rate of aqueous humor production or help improve the rate of drainage.

Warning Signs of Glaucoma

Many forms of glaucoma have no warning signs until the condition is at an advanced stage and some vision loss occurs. Scheduling regular comprehensive eye exams (that include measurements of your eye pressure) can ensure early diagnosis and appropriate treatment that can slow or prevent vision loss. Read below for symptoms you may experience in later stages of glaucoma.

Types of Glaucoma

The signs and symptoms of glaucoma vary depending on the type of glaucoma you have and stage of your condition. Below are the common types of glaucoma and the symptoms associated with each:

Open-Angle Glaucoma

Open-Angle Glaucoma is the most common type of glaucoma. It occurs when ocular fluid cannot pass through the eye’s filtration system (trabecular meshwork) to the drainage canals. Many people do not notice early symptoms because glaucoma attacks the peripheral vision before it affects central vision. Over time, peripheral vision is slowly diminished and eventually may lead to full blindness if not treated. Annual eye exams can help alert you to changes in vision and should be scheduled regularly.

Symptoms May Include:

  • There may be NO symptoms early on
  • Tunnel vision in the advanced stages
  • Blurred vision
  • Patchy Blind spots in central or side vision
  • Decreased color vision
  • Reduced night vision

View Video

Closed-Angle Glaucoma

Closed-Angle Glaucoma occurs suddenly when the eye’s fluid cannot drain and causes a rapid increase in eye pressure. A person may experience pain and sudden impairment of vision. Acute CAG requires emergency medical treatment. Permanent vision loss can happen in a short period of time with this condition. If you experience severe pain and nausea, blurry vision, and redness in the eyes you should seek immediate treatment to avoid severe vision loss.

Symptoms May Include:

  • Severe headache
  • Eye pain
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Blurred vision
  • Halos around lights
  • Eye redness
View Video

Congenital Glaucoma

Congenital Glaucoma is a condition in which children are born with a defect in the eye’s angle. This defect interferes with fluid drainage and causes elevated pressure.

Symptoms May Include:

  • Excessive tearing
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Spasms or squeezing of the eyelid
View Video

Secondary Glaucoma

Secondary Glaucomas can occur as a result of other diseases or treatments, such as:

  • High blood pressure
  • Diabetes
  • Complications of cataract surgery
  • Steroid treatments
  • Uveitis (inflammation of the middle layer of the eye)

Symptoms May Include:

  • Severe headache
  • Eye pain
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Blurred vision
  • Halos around lights
  • Eye redness
View Video

Low Tension Glaucoma

Low Tension Glaucoma occurs when patients with normal eye pressure experience damage to the optic nerve or peripheral vision loss.

Glaucoma Treatments

Shaaf Eye Center’s ophthalmologists will partner with you to provide appropriate treatment plans aimed at lowering intraocular pressure.
We will begin with Diagnostic modalities including comprehensive eye exams with gonioscopy and intraocular pressure measuring, visual fields testing, optic disc a photos, and optical coherence tomography (“OCT”) testing of the optic nerve and angle.

Depending on the type of glaucoma you have, and the stage it is in, we may recommend one of the following treatment options:

Frequently Asked Questions:

The best form of prevention against significant glaucoma damage is through regular eye exams. Early detection and careful, lifelong treatment can maintain vision in most people. We recommend the following eye exam schedule based upon your age and family history.

  • Before age 40, every two to four years
  • from age 40 to age 54, every one to three years
  • from age 55 to 64, every one to two years
  • after age 65, every six to 12 months

Anyone with high risk factors should be tested every year or two after age 35. 

  • Know your family’s eye health history. Glaucoma tends to run in families. If you’re at increased risk, you may need more frequent screening.
  • Exercise safely. Regular, moderate exercise may help prevent glaucoma by reducing eye pressure. Talk with your doctor about an appropriate exercise program.

We hope to one day restore vision lost from glaucoma, but that can’t presently be done by anyone. Existing treatments slow the progression of glaucoma for most patients.

We like to say we can’t cure glaucoma, but we can control it. Eye drops, pills, laser procedures, and surgical operations are used to prevent or slow further damage from occurring. With any type of glaucoma, regular eye examinations are very important to detect progression and to prevent vision loss.

Because chronic forms of glaucoma can destroy vision before any signs or symptoms are apparent, be aware of these risk factors:

  • Having high internal eye pressure (intraocular pressure)
  • Being over age 60
  • Being black, Asian or Hispanic
  • Having a family history of glaucoma
  • Having certain medical conditions, such as diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure and sickle cell anemia
  • Having corneas that are thin in the center
  • Being extremely nearsighted or farsighted
  • Having had an eye injury or certain types of eye surgery
  • Taking corticosteroid medications, especially eyedrops, for a long time
Chart Illustrating How Glaucoma Affects an Eye

Glaucoma Doctors


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Shaaf Eye Center

40055 Bob Hope Dr., Suite J
Rancho Mirage, CA 92270

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(760) 346-6466
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