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Making a Diagnosis

Many people may know of the "air puff" test or other tests used to measure eye pressure during an eye examination. However, this test alone cannot detect glaucoma; while elevated eye pressure means that you are at risk for developing it, it does not necessarily mean that you have it (see Glaucoma and Eye Pressure). A person has glaucoma only if the optic nerve is damaged. If you have increased eye pressure but no damage to the optic nerve, you do not have it.
A diagnosis is most often made through a comprehensive eye exam that includes the following:
  • Visual acuity test
  • Visual field test
  • Dilated eye exam
  • Tonometry
  • Pachymetry.
(Click Glaucoma Diagnosis for more information.)

How Is It Treated?

Although there is no cure, glaucoma can usually be controlled. The most common treatments are:
Medication may come in the form of eye drops or pills. Some drugs are designed to reduce pressure by slowing the flow of fluid into the eye. Others help to improve fluid drainage.
For most people with glaucoma, regular use of medications will control the increased fluid pressure. However, these drugs may stop working over time. They may also cause side effects. If a problem occurs, the eye care professional may select other medications, change the dosage, or suggest other ways to deal with the problem.

Glaucoma Information

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