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Types Of Glaucoma And Their Symptoms

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Many people view glaucoma as a singular condition. However, there are actually several different varieties of the disease. Each variation of the disease has its own symptoms. As a result, some people may not realize that they are experiencing symptoms that are indicative of glaucoma. Here are a few types of glaucoma and the symptoms that accompany them:


Open-angle glaucoma is the most common type of glaucoma. It progresses slowly and occurs as the drainage canals become clogged. This clogging causes the pressure within the eye to increase. In addition, the angle between the cornea and the iris remains open and wide.

The main symptom of open-angle glaucoma is the formation of blind spots or patches in the side or peripheral vision. Otherwise, there are no significant indications of the disease. As a result, eye appointments are especially important, since the disease can be caught in its early stages by an ophthalmologist.


Angle-closure glaucoma also presents as the drainage canals become blocked. However, it progresses rapidly and the angle between the cornea and iris is narrow or closed.

Symptoms of angle-closure glaucoma include:

  • Headaches
  • Blurry vision
  • Vomiting
  • Halos in the field of sight
  • Eye pain
  • Eye redness


Normal-pressure glaucoma includes damage to the optic nerve. However, the pressure within the eye remains relatively low. Symptoms of this variety of glaucoma include blind spots. In addition, damage to the optic nerve may be visible during an eye exam.


Congenital glaucoma is caused by the improper development of drainage canals in the womb. The condition, which is present at birth, is usually found in babies and young children.

The symptoms of congenital glaucoma include:

  • Excessive watering of the eyes
  • Cloudy corneas
  • Cloudy irises
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Eyelid spasms

Early detection of congenital glaucoma is important so that treatment can begin as soon as possible. Thus, the eyes of babies and young children should be checked regularly.

Glaucoma may be detected using several tests, such as a visual field test, tonometry, a visual acuity test, and a dilated eye examination. With the dilated eye exam, drops are placed in the eye to dilate the pupil so the eye doctor has a clear view of any optic nerve or retina damage.

Early detection and glaucoma treatment does not reverse the damage already done to the eyes by the disease. However, early treatment of glaucoma does help preserve the remaining vision.

To have your eyes screened and treated for glaucoma, schedule an appointment with an eye doctor in your local area.