Glaucoma is an eye condition traditionally associated with elevated pressure intraocular pressure (tension) and optic nerve damage. More recently, it has been recognized to occur even in the presence of normal or low intraocular pressure (tension). Glaucoma the second leading cause of blindness in the United States. It can occur at any age but is more common in older adults. As many patients have low- or normal-pressure glaucoma as have high pressure glaucoma.
High pressure glaucoma can be diagnosed by measuring the pressure in the eye, examining optic nerve function, assessing visual fields, and studying the retina. For the diagnosis of low- and normal-pressure glaucoma, it is important to compare intraocular pressure to intracranial pressure. The normal relationship of intraocular pressure to intracranial pressure appears to be altered in low- and normal-pressure glaucoma.
The visual loss associated with nerve damage cannot be recovered.« Back to Glossary Index