What Eye Drops Help Treat Glaucoma?
As many as three million Americans may be afflicted with glaucoma. However, a sizable portion of that population may not even know they have this potentially severe condition. This obliviousness is not the patient’s fault – it’s what makes glaucoma so dangerous. Since this ocular disease strikes silently without any outward signs, there’s a real chance that irreversible damage may be done by the time an individual is diagnosed.
Therefore, your most promising course of action is to schedule regular eye exams. Early detection and intervention are essential for your optimal outcome. And one of the best ways to achieve that is to contact our expert eye doctors and set up an appointment at inVision Ophthalmology Birmingham in Birmingham, AL.
Eye drops offer an indispensable treatment tool against glaucoma
Eye drops may be a single part of a more comprehensive management system that incorporates other treatment techniques, including laser-based surgeries that can help dispel the harmful, accumulating pressure within the eye. So, while glaucoma is incurable and the vision loss that results from optic nerve damage cannot be reversed, management options can yield excellent results for the foreseeable future and help prevent further damage.
Since excess fluid inside the eye can cause significant damage to the essential optic nerve, eye drops primarily work to achieve two things: either to decrease the quantity of fluid made by the eye or to allow better drainage, which is otherwise hampered by various causes, including what’s known as angle closure. This closure blocks the drainage network (or angle) that sits at the juncture of the cornea (the transparent, protective outer surface) and the iris (the colored part) of the eye.
What kinds of eye drops help treat glaucoma?
The following types of eye drops are named according to their main ingredient. They work through various mechanisms and have their own considerations. Though if selection seems overwhelming, have no worry; we’ll utilize our experience and expertise to formulate the most effective treatment plan possible for your needs and ocular specifics.
Some drops are known as prostaglandin analogs. They cause few side effects but may also cause physical changes to the structures of the eye, such as eyelash growth or an alteration of the colors of the iris. These drugs relieve glaucoma by increasing the outflow of fluid from the eye.
Other medicines work by decreasing the amount of fluid produced by the eye. These are known as beta-blockers and may be less expensive since they’re available in generic formats.
Among the newer types of substances are the Rho kinase inhibitors, which help relieve harmful intraocular pressure by stimulating the drainage of the intraocular fluid.
Like the beta-blockers mentioned previously, carbonic anhydrase inhibitors decrease the production of fluid within the eye, lowering the pressure to save the optic nerve from further damage.
Some drugs work through a combination of mechanisms. For example, alpha agonists help you avoid future optic nerve harm by improving drainage efficiency while also reducing intraocular fluid production.
Protect your eye health and vision
Each of these classes of drugs has its benefits, potential drawbacks, patient-dependent interactions, and many other relevant factors that must be weighed.
Alternatively, a combination of eye drops may be most beneficial. Or a variety of treatment types. There are plenty of options that utilize different modalities, and we’d love to help find the most helpful possible treatment for you. All you have to do is contact us today at inVision Ophthalmology Birmingham in Birmingham, AL.