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Glaucoma is an eye disease that is the most common reason for blindness around the world.
In the United States alone, it is estimated that three million people suffer from glaucoma - however, only half are aware they have the eye disease. Worldwide, glaucoma is responsible for blindness in nearly six million people.
Glaucoma is caused by damage to the optic nerve in the eye. In most people, there is an increased eye pressure that causes the damage to the optic nerve.
This is the reason why eye doctors will test your eye pressure during an eye exam. In a small percentage of people, eye pressure is normal. In this small group, it is believed that the optic nerve damage is due to poor blood flow to the nerve.
The optic nerve is what is responsible for the brain processing images so that we can see. The optic nerve is located at the rear of the eye. Through light transmission, the nerve intercepts images and transmits them to the brain. As this is done, the brain interprets that data and enables us to see.
Glaucoma can be diagnosed during your annual eye exam.
Risk Factors for Glaucoma
Symptoms of Glaucoma
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