Glaucoma Management in Singapore: Understanding, Causes, and Management

Glaucoma, Interesting Eye Articles

16 November 2023

Glaucoma is a prevalent eye condition that affects numerous individuals in Singapore. It is crucial to have a comprehensive understanding of glaucoma, its causes, available treatment options, and effective management strategies. Philip D Izaac, an eyecare provider in Singapore, offers personalized care to address glaucoma and preserve the vision health of their patients.

What is Glaucoma?

Glaucoma is a multifactorial optic degenerative neuropathy characterized by the loss of retinal ganglion cells. It is a combination of vascular, genetic, anatomical, and immune factors. [1] Glaucoma can lead to vision loss and, if left untreated, even blindness. There are various types of glaucoma, including primary open-angle glaucoma, angle-closure glaucoma, normal-tension glaucoma, and secondary glaucoma. The most common type of glaucomas are open angle glaucoma and closed angle. In Singapore, approximately three per cent of people over the age of 50 have glaucoma. This percentage increases with age and reaches almost 10 per cent for those over the age of 70. Closed-angle glaucoma accounts for less than half this figure.[2]

Causes of Glaucoma:

Elevated IOP is a significant risk factor for glaucoma, but other factors contribute to its development as well. These include a family history of glaucoma, age (as the risk increases with age), certain medical conditions (such as diabetes, high blood pressure, and heart disease), and previous eye injuries or surgeries. While the exact causes may vary, early detection and proper management are vital in preventing vision loss.

Signs and symptoms of Primary open angle glaucoma 

  • An eye pressure of greater than 21mmHg
  • An open angle
  • Glaucomatous Cupping and Thinning of nerve fibre layer ( Diagram 1 and Diagram2)
  • Visual field loss (Diagram 3)
  • Usually Asymptomatic until significant loss of visual field

Signs and symptoms of Acute closed angle glaucoma

  • Sudden blurring of vision
  • Severe eye pain
  • Headache
  • Nausea
  • Haloes around lights

Optometrist role in glaucoma management:

It is important with any comprehensive eye examination to be able to detect any indication of glaucoma as well as any eye related diseases which will then be referred to an opthalmologist to confirm diagnosis and treatment. 

 In  Philip D Izaac we have advanced diagnostic tools, such as fundus camera, visual field tests and optical coherence tomography (OCT), tonometry (eye pressure) , to allow for earlier diagnosis and  accurate monitoring of the condition.

With a strong emphasis on patient education and support, Philip D Izaac and associate ensures individuals with glaucoma have the knowledge and resources necessary to manage their condition effectively. By understanding glaucoma, treatment options, and adopting lifestyle modifications that promote eye health, patients can actively participate in their own care and maintain a good quality of life.

By addressing glaucoma promptly, adhering to treatment plans, and seeking regular eye care, individuals can take control.

(Diagram 1 : Normal cupping vs Glaucomatous cupping [3])
(Diagram 1 : Normal cupping vs Glaucomatous cupping [3])
Diagram 2 : Normal nerve thickness vs thinning of nerve fibre
Diagram 2 : Normal nerve thickness vs thinning of nerve fibre
Normal field vs reduced field in glaucoma
Diagram 2 : Normal nerve thickness vs thinning of nerve fibre