Glaucoma usually doesn't cause any noticeable symptoms until it has caused permanent damage. Ask your primary care doctor how often you need to see an eye doctor (ophthalmologist) for a comprehensive eye exam and follow that schedule.
If you have any new eye symptoms or vision problems, make an appointment with your ophthalmologist or ask your doctor for a referral.
Here's some information to help you get ready for your appointment.
What you can do
Before your appointment make a list of:
- Symptoms you've been having, and for how long
- All medications, supplements and vitamins you take, including the doses
- Any eye problems you've had in the past, such as vision changes or eye discomfort
- Questions to ask your doctor
Some basic questions to ask your doctor include:
- Do I have signs of glaucoma?
- What tests do I need to confirm a diagnosis?
- What treatment approach do you recommend?
- What are the alternatives to the primary approach you're suggesting?
- Do I need to follow any activity restrictions?
- What other self-care measures might help me?
- What is the long-term outlook in my case?
- How often do I need to return for follow-up visits?
- Do I need to see an additional specialist?
- I have these other health conditions. How can I best manage them together?
What to expect from your doctor
A doctor who sees you for possible glaucoma is likely to ask you a number of questions, such as:
Sept. 15, 2015
- Have you had any eye discomfort or vision problems?
- Do you have any other signs or symptoms that concern you?
- Do you have any family history of glaucoma or other eye problems?
- What eye screening tests have you had and when?
- Have you been diagnosed with any other medical conditions?
- Are you using any eyedrops?
- Are you using any vitamins or supplements?
- AskMayoExpert. Glaucoma. Rochester, Minn.: Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research; 2015.
- AskMayoExpert. Glaucoma (pediatric). Rochester, Minn.: Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research; 2014.
- Glaucoma. American Optometric Association. www.aoa.org/Glaucoma.xml. Accessed July 23, 2015.
- Glaucoma. Merck Manuals Professional Version. www.merckmanuals.com/professional/SearchResults?query=glaucoma. Accessed July 23, 2015.
- Information for healthy vision. National Eye Institute. https://nei.nih.gov/healthyeyes/eyehealthtips. Accessed July 30, 2015.
- Weinreb RN, et al. The pathophysiology and treatment of glaucoma: A review. JAMA. 2014;311:1901. http://www.clinicalkey.com. Accessed July 22, 2015.
- SooHoo JR, et al. Minimally invasive glaucoma surgery: Current implants and future innovations. Canadian Journal of Ophthalmology. 2014;49:528.
- Lazzaro EC, et al. The effect of positional changes on intraocular pressure during sleep in patients with and without glaucoma. Journal of Glaucoma. 2014;23:282.
- Yanoff M, et al., eds. Which therapy to use in glaucoma? In: Ophthalmology. 4th ed. Edinburgh, U.K.: Mosby Elsevier; 2014. http://www.clinicalkey.com.
- Vajaranant TS, et al. Risk of glaucoma after early bilateral oophorectomy. Menopause. 2014;21:391.
- Malihi M, et al. Long-term trends in glaucoma-related blindness in Olmsted County, Minnesota. Ophthalmology. 2014;121:134.
- Facts about glaucoma. National Eye Institute. http://www.nei.nih.gov/health/glaucoma/glaucoma_facts.asp. Accessed July 23, 2015.
- Bower TN, et al. Canadian ophthalmologists' opinions concerning complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) use in glaucoma. Journal of Glaucoma. 2014;23:430.
- Sit AJ. Evaluation and adoption of new technology in glaucoma surgery. American Journal of Ophthalmology. 2014;157:263.
- American Academy of Ophthalmology. Preferred practice pattern: Primary open-angle glaucoma summary benchmark; 2014. http://www.aao.org/summary-benchmark-detail/primary-openangle-glaucoma-summary-benchmark--octo. Accessed July 27, 2015.
- Alpha-linolenic acid. Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database. www.naturaldatabase.therapeuticresearch.com. Accessed July 30, 2015.
- Glaucoma: Screening. U.S. Preventive Services Task Force; 2013. http://www.uspreventiveservicestaskforce.org/uspstf/uspsglau.htm. Accessed July 27, 2015.
- Medication guide. Glaucoma Research Foundation. http://www.glaucoma.org/treatment/medication-guide.php. Accessed July 23, 2015.
- Alternative medicine. Glaucoma Research Foundation. http://www.glaucoma.org/treatment/alternative-medicine.php. Accessed July 23, 2015.
- Waisbourd M, et al. Selective laser trabeculoplasty as a first-line therapy: A review. Canadian Journal of Ophthalmology. 2014;49:519.
- Does marijuana help treat glaucoma? American Academy of Ophthalmology. www.geteyesmart.org. Accessed April 24, 2015.
- Drug monograph: Marijuana, medical. Gold Standard. https://www.clinicalkey.com. Accessed July 23, 2015.
- Volkow ND, et al. Adverse health effects of marijuana use. New England Journal of Medicine. 2014;370:2219.
- Glaucoma. Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database. http://naturaldatabase.therapeuticresearch.com. Accessed July 22, 2015.
- Ferri FF. Glaucoma, open-angle. In: Ferri's Clinical Advisor 2016. Philadelphia, Pa.: Mosby Elsevier; 2016. https://www.clinicalkey.com. Accessed July 23, 2015.
- Lumigan. U.S. Food and Drug Administration. http://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/cder/drugsatfda/index.cfm?fuseaction=Search.Label_ApprovalHistory. Accessed Aug. 24, 2015.