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Professional Arena

LIFE AFTER DIAGNOSIS 

You have been diagnosed with glaucoma. What can you do to maximise the chances of maintaining good vision for as long as possible?

 

Remain vigilant

The most important thing to do is to keep your regular appointments and follow your doctor’s instructions. Except for a few types of glaucoma, the tendency for glaucoma to cause continuing damage remains with the person for life.

 

Be ready for regular eye examinations

Your eye specialist or optometrist will perform regular investigations to determine if your glaucoma is getting worse. These include measuring the pressure in the eye, a test of your side vision, and an examination of the optic nerve.

 

Follow your treatment exactly and stick with it 

The person who has a serious glaucoma, in which the optic nerve already has become damaged, must realise that they are going to have to make trade-offs. Using drops is a nuisance, but if one has the type of glaucoma that is going to get worse, and the glaucoma is being controlled with medications, either you use the drops or the glaucoma gets worse and you lose vision.

Compliance is the term for following a medication schedule as prescribed by a doctor. Persistence is the term for sticking with it. Compliance and persistence with your medication regimen is critical. After all, even the most recent diagnostic and treatment advances cannot help you if you are non-compliant. In fact, non-compliance is a leading cause of glaucoma blindness.

 

 

Ask your doctor questions

Expect answers that you can understand. Discuss your medications, possible side effects, proposed treatments, etc. Your doctor will help you understand your pressure, your type of glaucoma, and its needed treatment.

 

 

 

Helpful tips

  • Use your medications regularly as instructed.
  • Know the names of your medicines and how often they are used.
  • Inform your other doctors and health care specialists of your glaucoma. Provide them with a list of your medications.
  • Agree on a certain frequency of check-ups with your doctor and stick to that schedule.
  • Call your doctor if any unusual symptoms or eye problems arise.
  • Discuss your glaucoma with family members and suggest that they have a check-up. Do not forget that glaucoma often runs in families.
  • Join Glaucoma NZ to keep up-to-date with glaucoma information.

     

 

 




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