Open Angle Glaucoma is one type of Glaucoma.
There are several other types of Glaucoma.
The differences have to do with what’s causing the fluid blockage that builds pressure in the eye.
Primary Open-Angle glaucoma also called chronic open-angle or narrow angle glaucoma, accounts for most cases of the disease.
Although the drainage angle formed by the Cornea and the iris remain open, the aqueous humor drains too slowly.
This leads to fluid backup and gradual buildup of pressure within the eye.
Damage to the optic nerve is so slow and painless that a large portion of your vision can be lost before you’re even aware of a Eyesight Problem.
The cause of primary open-angle glaucoma remains unknown.
It may be that the aqueous humor drains or is absorbed less efficiently with age.
But then not all older adults get this form of Glaucoma.
Both open angle and acute Closed Angle Glaucoma can be primary or secondary conditions.
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They’re called primary when the cause of the condition is unknown.
They’re called secondary when the condition can be traced to a know cause, such as injury or Eye Disease.
Secondary glaucoma may be cause by a variety of medical condition, medication, physical injuries, and eye abnormalities or deformities.
Infrequently eye surgery can cause secondary glaucoma.
Primary open angle glaucoma progresses with few or no symptoms until the condition reaches an advanced stage.
As increased eye pressure continues to damage the optic nerve, you lose more and more of your peripheral vision.
Open angle glaucoma usually affects both eyes, although at first you may have symptoms in just one eye.
Other symptoms include:
The underlying causes of glaucoma aren’t completely understood.
Evidence suggests that open angle glaucoma has a genetic link.
That is, defect in one or more genes may cause the disease.
People with a family history of glaucoma are more likely to develop it themselves.
Nevertheless, the exact genetic defects responsible for its occurrence haven’t been identified.
Other factors appear to contribute to the disease, but again, what these factors are and the relationships among them aren’t known for certain.
Although glaucoma is normally associated with increased eye pressure, people with normal or low eye pressure can experience vision loss.
And people with higher than normal eye pressure may never experience optic nerve damage.
Doctors have debated for many years about how damage to the optic nerve occurs.
One theory holds that the pressure of backed up aqueous humor causes structural damage and ultimately death to the nerve fibers.
Another theory suggests that nerve fibers die when small blood vessels that feed the optic nerve become blocked or when the blood supply is disrupted.
The cause of decreased drainage through the trabecular meshwork also presents a puzzle.
The changes that slow drainage may be a result of normal aging, yet not all order adults develop glaucoma.
Age Open angle glaucoma is rare before age 40.
The risk of developing glaucoma nearly doubles every 10 years after age 50.
Approximately 14 percent of people in the United States who are age 80 have the disease.
Primary open angel glaucoma is most common in older adult women.
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