Narrow Angle Glaucoma
What Is Narrow Angle Glaucoma?
Narrow angle glaucoma, also known as closed-angle or angle-closure glaucoma, is less common than open angle glaucoma. This type of glaucoma can be chronic and progress over time, or it can be acute, appearing suddenly. In the acute form, it is a medical emergency that requires immediate attention. This condition can lead to blindness within three to five (3-5) days, if not treated.
Narrow angle glaucoma occurs as a result of a rapid increase in intraocular pressure. It occurs when the drainage angle between the iris and cornea decreases, thus preventing the aqueous humor from draining properly through the trabecular meshwork. The angle may be narrow from birth, or it may decrease as a result of the aging process. As you age, the lens of your eye grows larger, decreasing the space between the iris and the cornea. An accident or blow to the eye may also cause the angle to narrow, as well as development of blood vessels caused by diabetes.
Whatever the cause of the narrow angle, dilated pupils can cause your angle to close and trigger a sudden increase in intraocular pressure. Many things can cause your pupils to become dilated such as darkness or low light levels, stress or excitement, and certain medications including antihistamines, tricyclic antidepressants and dilating eye drops.
If you experience any of the following symptoms, you should immediately contact your ophthalmologist as immediate treatment may save your sight:
- Severe eye and head pain
- Blurred, hazy vision, sudden sight loss
- Halos around lights
- Nausea and vomiting
- Abdominal pain
During your routine eye examinations, your ophthalmologist will use a mirrored lens to see if the trabecular meshwork is in danger of becoming blocked. If this exam determines that you are risk for acute narrow angle glaucoma, a preventative Laser Peripheral Iridotomy (LPI) may be recommended. LPI is a procedure that is quickly performed in the office.
Treatment of Narrow Angle Glaucoma
Select the following link to learn more about treatment of narrow angle glaucoma:
Glaucoma Specialists at Kadrmas Eye Care New England
Meet our ophthalmologists who specialize in the treatment of glaucoma: