Why choose the Glaucoma Specialists at Heartland Eye Consultants for your glaucoma care?
The doctors at Heartland Eye Consultants believe that successful glaucoma treatment is largely influenced by quality time with the patient, the experience and talent of the doctors, and the use of advanced technology to diagnose and manage the condition.
We want you to leave our office fully aware of the nature and risk of glaucoma and understand the individualized treatment plan we have developed for you. Therefore, patient education is paramount. We devote our time to not only carefully examine you, but thoroughly explain the results of the exam and its indications for treatment.
Our glaucoma specialists have been trained at the highest levels of the optometric profession and have over 35 years of experience treating glaucoma. They are perennial lecturers at various professional conferences nationwide and serve as adjunct clinical professors at several optometry schools.
Heartland Eye Consultants is on the cutting edge in the use of technological instruments in the diagnosis and management of glaucoma. Dr. Robert Vandervort has served as a consultant for several companies specializing in glaucoma diagnostic equipment. We employ the use of ocular coherence tomography, fundus photography, visual field testing, VEP and ERG testing, and various intra-ocular pressure instruments to evaluate our patients.
What is Glaucoma?
Glaucoma is a group of eye diseases that gradually steal sight without warning. In the early stages of the disease, there are rarely symptoms. The progressive loss of vision done by glaucoma is irreversible.
Glaucoma affects the optic nerve of the eye, which acts like a cable carrying a million “wires” or fibers from the eye to the brain. When glaucoma is present and untreated, these fibers of the nerve are progressively damaged leading to loss of vision.
What is your risk for glaucoma?
Your risk for glaucoma increases with the presence of any number of the following:
- Family history of glaucoma
- High nearsightedness
- Diabetes Mellitus
- Age over 60
- Steroid users
- History of eye injury
- High intraocular pressures
What should you expect at your initial glaucoma evaluation?
Because glaucoma is a complex disease, the initial evaluation requires an extensive examination using many diagnostic instruments. These tests are necessary to determine your glaucoma severity or risk.
You can expect the exam to include:
- Tonometry or the measurement of the intraocular pressure. We employ multiple tonometry methods (Goldmann, Perkins, and PASCAL) to ensure accurate eye pressure measurements.
- Visual field testing of the peripheral vision. This 3-5 minute test per eye evaluates the sensitivity of your central and peripheral vision. Patients with glaucoma have varying amounts of peripheral vision loss depending on their severity.
- Gonioscopy or evaluation of the fluid drainage/filtration structure inside the front of the eye. If this structure is damaged or narrow the pressure inside of the eye can increase causing glaucomatous damage to the optic nerve.
- Pachymetry or the measurement of the corneal thickness. Thinner than normal corneas place a patient at a higher risk for glaucoma.
- Dilated fundus examination allows us to view your optic nerve for glaucomatous signs as well as the rest of the eye for other concurrent or associated diseases.
- Retinal photography allows us to image the optic nerve and retina in order to evaluate for areas of thinning of the fibers coming out of the nerve as well as track changes over time. Photography also gives us an opportunity to show you your optic nerve, teaching you why we consider it at risk for glaucoma.
- Optical Coherence Tomography is a newer technology that produces highly detailed images of the retina and optic nerve. It measures tissue down to the microns (0.001 mm) and allows us to track any changes that might occur over time in your optic nerve.
Having Vision Problems?
Contact the experts at Heartland Eye Consultants.