|Eye disease may be prevented
by Carolyn C. Cavanaugh, R.N.
MUSC Storm Eye Institute
Have you ever heard your parents say, “An ounce of prevention is worth
a pound of cure?” That thought echoes in my mind as I consider how the
complications of some eye diseases, such as glaucoma, could be
prevented or at least slowed down with a simple action.
January marks national Awareness of Glaucoma month. Glaucoma is an eye
disease that can result in blindness if not detected and treated early,
and is one of the leading causes of blindness affecting more than 2
million people in the United States. Half of this number do not know
they have the disease.
Glaucoma has no symptoms at first; nothing that suggests the disease is
progressing. When sight is being lost, it is being reduced from the
side or peripheral first. Since that vision is not as detailed as our
central vision, it is not noticed initially.
Prevention can keep eyes healthy
an eye exam at least once every two years if you are in the high-risk
group for glaucoma. Often glaucoma is detected during a regular eye
can be treated with medications, a laser and surgery. The earlier it is
detected and treated, the better chance for retention of vision.
more information about glaucoma, stop by the Health 1st Wellness
Wednesday table on the first floor of Children’s Hospital near the gift
shop from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Brochures and more information are
considered high risk are African- Americans 40 years and older; other
demographics 60 years and older, especially Hispanic and Asian
populations; and those who have a family member with glaucoma.
Friday, Jan. 29, 2010