River Forest, IL | Glaucoma - The Silent Thief | Kirk Eye Center

Glaucoma is a potentially blinding condition and diagnosis and treatment for it is extremely important.

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Kent Kirk: Glaucoma is a potentially blinding condition and diagnosis and treatment for it is extremely important. In our training we specialized in glaucoma actually and spent a number of years perfecting the procedures that are necessary to treat it. We feel that it's very important to go through regular screenings and every year people come in for exams and we do screening for glaucoma and any other eye condition. If we deem that someone has glaucoma or requires treatment for it, we have a number of different procedures, both laser and surgical to treat the glaucoma problem.

We do regular screenings for glaucoma in everyone. We do find that certain ethnic groups, African American patients have a higher risk of serious vision loss due to glaucoma so that's why we do stress really for everyone to have a yearly examination and possible treatment if necessary. We really have three levels of treatment in helping to treat for glaucoma. We start with drops typically, and we have a number of different drops to choose from. If that is not effective, or we find that we need further treatment, we then move to a laser treatment that can treat it. And if we find that it's still more as needed, we can move to the surgical option. Unfortunately, with glaucoma a patient does not know if they're having a problem. They can't feel pain. They don't really notice the early vision loss related to glaucoma, and that's why yearly checkups and screenings are so important.

There are a number of ways to treat glaucoma. We usually start with drops as a first line treatment for it. We find that in most cases that is effective in treating the problem. If it is not enough, we can move then to laser correction for that. And then if they need more treatment beyond that, then we move to a surgical option and we have a number of different, excellent surgical options to treat glaucoma.