Have a symptom?
See what questions
a doctor would ask.

Primary open angle glaucoma

Primary open angle glaucoma: Introduction

Chronic open-angle glaucoma is a type of glaucoma, a group of diseases that affect the eyes and can result in blindness if not diagnosed and treated promptly. Chronic open-angle glaucoma develops slowly over a period of years and is the most common type of glaucoma. In contrast, acute-closed-angle glaucoma, is far less common and develops suddenly.

Chronic open-angle glaucoma is due to gradually increasing pressure inside the eye (increased intraocular pressure). Increased intraocular pressure results from a malfunctioning channel (drainage angle) in the eye. A malfunctioning drainage angle does not allow the clear fluid inside the eye to drain properly. The buildup of pressure inside the eye can eventually damage the optic nerve leading to permanent vision loss and eventually blindness. There may be no symptoms in early stages of chronic open-angle glaucoma, but without treatment, the damage to the optic nerve results in blind spots, which progressively become bigger until blindness occurs. For more information on symptoms and complications, refer to symptoms of chronic open-angle glaucoma.

Chronic open-angle glaucoma can affect anyone, but some factors contribute to the risk of developing the condition. These include a family history of diabetes or glaucoma or being nearsighted or being over age 60. People of African ancestry who are over the age of 40 years are also at risk for developing chronic open-angle glaucoma.

Chronic open-angle glaucoma is diagnosed through a combination of taking a thorough medical history, including symptoms, and an eye examination by an ophthalmologist, a physician who specializes in eye care. The eye examination can include a variety of tests. These include a visual acuity test to check the sharpness of vision. A visual acuity test involves reading an eye chart located at a specific distance across the room.

A visual field test checks sight on the peripheral (side) areas of vision. A tonometry test that measures pressure inside the eye is performed using an instrument called a tonometer. The ophthalmologist will also use eye drops to enlarge the pupil of the eye so that he or she can look directly into the eye with an instrument called an ophthalmoscope and see the retina and optic nerve.

A gonioscopy test may also be done. In this test a special lens is placed on the eye to examine the channel in the eye that drains eye fluid to see if it has become blocked or has other abnormal changes.

Because there are often no symptoms in early stages of chronic open-angle glaucoma, a diagnosis is often delayed or missed. In addition, symptoms of chronic open-angle glaucoma can be similar to symptoms of other diseases or conditions. For more information on misdiagnosis and diseases and conditions that can mimic chronic open-angle glaucoma, refer to misdiagnosis of chronic open-angle glaucoma.

Treatment of chronic open-angle can include medication, laser surgery or other surgical procedures. For more information on treatment, refer to treatment of chronic open-angle glaucoma. ...more »

Primary open angle glaucoma: POAG is characterized by increase in the intraocular pressure due to trabecular blockage. More detailed information about the symptoms, causes, and treatments of Primary open angle glaucoma is available below.

Primary open angle glaucoma: Symptoms

There are generally no symptoms in the earliest phases of chronic open-angle glaucoma, the most common form of glaucoma. As pressure builds up inside the eye (increased intraocular pressure), it gradually damages the optic nerve. If not diagnosed and treated promptly, this can lead the development of blind spots, especially in the peripheral areas (side areas) of vision. ...more symptoms »

Primary open angle glaucoma: Treatments

The first step in the treatment of chronic open-angle glaucoma is the prevention of progression of the disease and permanent serious complications, such as blindness. Prevention includes seeking regular eye care for life. This can help detect chronic open-angle glaucoma in early stages before symptoms appear.

Any damage to the optic nerve due to chronic open-angle glaucoma ...more treatments »

Primary open angle glaucoma: Misdiagnosis

Symptoms of chronic open-angle glaucoma can be similar to symptoms of other diseases or conditions, such as macular degeneration, cataracts, diabetic retinopathy, uveitis, and stroke.

In addition, because most people have no symptoms of chronic open-angle glaucoma in the early stages, a diagnosis is easy to miss or delay. Chronic open-angle glaucoma can be effectively ...more misdiagnosis »

Symptoms of Primary open angle glaucoma

Treatments for Primary open angle glaucoma

Home Diagnostic Testing

Home medical testing related to Primary open angle glaucoma:

Wrongly Diagnosed with Primary open angle glaucoma?

Primary open angle glaucoma: Complications

Review possible medical complications related to Primary open angle glaucoma:

Causes of Primary open angle glaucoma

More information about causes of Primary open angle glaucoma:

Primary open angle glaucoma: Undiagnosed Conditions

Commonly undiagnosed diseases in related medical categories:

Misdiagnosis and Primary open angle glaucoma

Alzheimer's disease over-diagnosed: The well-known disease of Alzheimer's disease is often over-diagnosed. Patients tend to assume that any memory loss more »

Dementia may be a drug interaction: A common scenario in aged care is for a patient to show mental decline to dementia. Whereas this can, of course, more »

Tremor need not be Parkinson's disease: There is the tendency to believe that any tremor symptom, or shakiness, means Parkinson's disease. The reality is that there are various possibilities, more »

Rare diseases misdiagnosed as Parkinson's disease: A rare genetic disorder is often misdiagnosed as Parkinson's disease for men in their 50's. The disease Fragile X disorder can more »

Vitamin B12 deficiency under-diagnosed: The condition of Vitamin B12 deficiency is a possible misdiagnosis of various conditions, such as multiple sclerosis (see symptoms of multiple sclerosis). See symptoms of Vitamin B12 more »

Primary open angle glaucoma: Research Doctors & Specialists

Research related physicians and medical specialists:

Other doctor, physician and specialist research services:

Hospitals & Clinics: Primary open angle glaucoma

Research quality ratings and patient safety measures for medical facilities in specialties related to Primary open angle glaucoma:

Choosing the Best Hospital: More general information, not necessarily in relation to Primary open angle glaucoma, on hospital performance and surgical care quality:

Primary open angle glaucoma: Rare Types

Rare types of diseases and disorders in related medical categories:

Evidence Based Medicine Research for Primary open angle glaucoma

Medical research articles related to Primary open angle glaucoma include:

Click here to find more evidence-based articles on the TRIP Database

Primary open angle glaucoma: Animations

Prognosis for Primary open angle glaucoma

Prognosis for Primary open angle glaucoma: Early detection and treatment is essential to prevent visual field defects

Research about Primary open angle glaucoma

Visit our research pages for current research about Primary open angle glaucoma treatments.

Primary open angle glaucoma: Broader Related Topics

User Interactive Forums

Read about other experiences, ask a question about Primary open angle glaucoma, or answer someone else's question, on our message boards:

Related Primary open angle glaucoma Info

More information about Primary open angle glaucoma

  1. Primary open angle glaucoma: Introduction
  2. Symptoms
  3. Causes
  4. Treatments
  5. Misdiagnosis
  6. Home Testing
  7. Types
  8. Complications
  9. Prognosis

By using this site you agree to our Terms of Use. Information provided on this site is for informational purposes only; it is not intended as a substitute for advice from your own medical team. The information on this site is not to be used for diagnosing or treating any health concerns you may have - please contact your physician or health care professional for all your medical needs. Please see our Terms of Use.

Home | Symptoms | Diseases | Diagnosis | Videos | Tools | Forum | About Us | Terms of Use | Privacy Policy | Site Map | Advertise