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Don’t be Blindsided by Glaucoma

Well known INXS guitarist and Glaucoma Australia’s Ambassador Kirk Pengilly has a clear message for all of us: get that eye test now and don’t be blindsided by glaucoma.

Kirk was diagnosed with glaucoma at 29. Although as a glasses-wearer he was used to regular eye tests, he had no idea that glaucoma could literally ‘sneak up’ on you, without any apparent symptoms. Vision loss from glaucoma can be gradual and go almost unnoticed. Glaucoma Australia reports that whilst it can occur at any age, our risk increases as we get older. It cannot be self-detected and currently, about 50% of Australians with glaucoma remain undetected.

So, what exactly is glaucoma?

It is the loss of vision due to damage to the optic nerve, caused by the increase in inter-ocular pressure (IOP) or fluid pressure inside the eye. The level of eye pressure which can cause damage varies from person to person, that’s why it’s crucial to have regular eye health checks to measure your eye pressure (a painless test) and monitor any changes.

Family history plays a big role, as does being over 50 or having a history of migraine, diabetes or blood pressure issues.

Glaucoma can’t be cured, but early intervention and treatment can slow its progress and help to minimise vision loss.

“When I got glaucoma, it really hit home how important sight was to me and obviously to everyone. It was a real wake up call for me as I came within a millimetre of losing my eyesight. I feel the need to encourage people to be aware of eye health and the importance of getting their eyes checked regularly.” (MiVision, March 2020)

Checking your eye pressure and general eye health is as simple as making an appointment with us at Outlook Eye Centre now – just click here and book in.

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