World Glaucoma Week 2023
World Glaucoma Week, which takes place from March 12 to 18, 2023, is an initiative that aims to raise awareness of the detection and treatment of this disease.
What is glaucoma?
Did you know that glaucoma is one of the leading causes of blindness worldwide? It is a degenerative disease of the optic nerve that causes progressive loss of sight from the periphery of vision to its center. One of its peculiarities is its absence of symptoms in its early stages.
Despite the great advances in recent years in the treatment of glaucoma, the loss of vision associated with glaucoma remains permanent and irreversible. This is why specialists strongly recommend early diagnosis in order to quickly halt the progression of the disease.
What treatments are available?
Treatment options for glaucoma aim to lower and stabilize the eye's intraocular pressure (IOP) to preserve sight for those affected. Glaucoma can be treated with medication, laser treatments and different types of surgery. All of these treatments help to significantly reduce the damage caused to the optic nerve, even in patients whose IOP is normal.
It should be noted that glaucoma research advances diagnostic technologies and treatment methods year after year. Ultimately, research teams hope to find the causes of the disease in order to prevent it even before it appears.
How can glaucoma be prevented?
Despite medical advances through glaucoma research, the causes of this disease remain unknown.
The experts all agree on one thing: early detection is essential in the treatment of glaucoma.
In the majority of cases, glaucoma has no symptoms. It is therefore important to consult an eye care professional regularly. However, we should be more vigilant in the presence of one of the following risk factors:
- be over 40 years old;
- have a family history of glaucoma;
- having abnormally high intraocular pressure;
- have African, Scandinavian, Celtic or Russian ancestry;
- be diabetic;
- being nearsighted;
- having used corticosteroids for a long time;
- have suffered eye injuries.
The Glaucoma Foundation of Quebec is a non-profit organization founded by Dr Paul Harasymowycz, Medical Director of Bellevue Eye Clinics and an ophthalmologist specializing in glaucoma. The foundation aims to make the Quebec public aware of this disease to encourage people at risk to get screened and establish an early diagnosis. It also wants to promote and encourage scientific and medical research on the causes and treatment of glaucoma. She also studies the genetic elements involved in glaucoma and pursues the search for chromosomal regions that may play a role in the onset of this disease.
If you wish, you can donate online by clicking here.
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