It is always a debate between the most common ocular diseases cataracts vs glaucoma. Some even confuse one for the other and get them mixed up. Do they even have differences, and if there are what are they? This article will discuss that briefly cataracts vs glaucoma.
If you wan compare cataracts vs glaucoma we have to checktham one by one.
What is Glaucoma?
Glaucoma is an eye disease that gradually damages the optic nerve. It can lead to blind spots, distorted vision, and eventual blindness. Glaucoma affects one in three adults over age 60 and is the second-leading cause of blindness after cataracts.
Causes of Glaucoma
The most common cause of vision loss due to glaucoma is increased pressure on the optic nerve, which usually occurs because fluid build-up behind the eye (the ‘optic cup’) has not been properly drained by the lymphatic system.
The optic nerve is the nerve that transmits the visual signal from the eye, through the brain, to allow us to see. If it is damaged by increased pressure within the eye, this can have devastating consequences on vision.
Other less common causes of glaucoma are congenital defects in glaucoma drainage passages or other conditions that affect proper drainage of the fluid within your eye. These include poorly functioning blood vessels or other obstructions to standard outflow channels within the eye.
Fortunately, glaucoma is highly treatable by weakening or removing whatever is acting as a blockage to fluid flow out of your eyes.
Symptoms of Glaucoma
The primary symptom of glaucoma is that you are unable to see clearly. You may have some or all of the following symptoms: seeing halos, double vision, seeing things in front of your face at a distance, blurred vision, floaters (or ‘floaters’ are small hazy objects seen in the field of vision), bright spots on the field of vision.
Advanced stages of glaucoma can cause loss of peripheral vision and complete blindness.
Diagnosis and Treatment Options
Glaucoma is often diagnosed based on visual test results alone. However, an ophthalmologist or optometrist can administer tests that may detect glaucoma before you can see any symptoms. These include eye pressure measurements, corneal topography, visual field testing, frequency doubling perimetry, and/or fluorescein angiography. Diagnosis is usually made after all other causes of vision loss have been ruled out.
Treatment options for glaucoma primarily aim at two objectives: lowering the intraocular pressure in your eyes by either increasing drainage of fluid from your eyes, or decreasing the amount of fluid produced within your eyes.
The pressure within the eye is regulated by the production of aqueous humor by your ciliary body, and by how much fluid is drained out of your eyes. If the fluid cannot be properly drained from your eyes, thereby increasing intraocular pressure, medications can be taken to increase drainage of fluid from your eye.
What are Cataracts?
A cataract is a clouding of the lens of the eye. It may be one of many possible causes for blurred vision in some people, but it’s most commonly used as a symptom when there is something else going on in the eye. The clouding can make it difficult to see at night or in bright sunlight. In some cases, there may also be a feeling that something in front of you is closer than it is. Additionally, with a cataract present, your eyesight will deteriorate more quickly due to this disorder, and by age 75 or 80 you could have lost most or all of your sight.
What causes cataracts?
Cataracts are caused by changes in the lens of the eye. The most common cause of cataracts is age, which causes the lens of the eye to get less clear and cloudier. However, other causes for this disorder include injury, illness, a hereditary condition, or high eye pressure. High eye pressure occurs when fluid builds up inside of your eyeballs or when your blood vessels are stretched. It is estimated that about 6% of people over age 65 have high eye pressure that can cause cataract development. However, you can develop cataracts without high eye pressure and without any other structural abnormality in the lens itself.
Cataracts are the most common cause of blurred vision in older adults. Because of this, many people think cataracts are inevitable. However, although some people will eventually develop cataracts, you can take some steps to prevent or slow down this disorder.
What are the symptoms of cataracts?
The following are the most common symptoms of cataracts. However, each individual may experience symptoms differently. Symptoms may include:
- Blurred vision or cloudy vision at any time of day or night, especially when you read or drive at night or in bright sunlight.
- Your eyes may feel very dry and itchy.
- In some cases, your vision can become very blurry and distorted for a short time after you look at a bright light. This is a temporary symptom that does not last for more than a few minutes and can happen multiple times throughout the day if you look directly into bright lights such as those from cars, streetlights, flashlights, etc…
Treatment Options for Cataracts
There are two types of cataract surgery. One type involves removing the clouded lens(s) directly from the eye while preserving its shape and position in the eye by using a special camera. The other type uses lasers to create new lenses in place of the old ones.
If you or someone you love is getting to the point that they are having trouble seeing, don’t wait for your cataracts to become worse. Contact our office today to make an appointment to meet with one of our surgeons about this condition. After your cataract surgery, you will need to take good care of your eyes. This includes taking any medications exactly as prescribed, protecting your eyes from further damage or infection, and making sure that you are doing eye exercises side-to-side movements at least once an hour. If you are having trouble with any activity that requires sight, please let us know so that we may recommend other ways for you to do things until your vision has improved.
Now we can compare cataracts vs glaucoma here are the answears.
Comparing Cataracts vs glaucoma
- There are many parallels between Glaucoma and cataracts; however, there are some differences as well. Glaucoma is usually caused by age-related changes in the lens; however, cataract is usually caused by age-related changes in the lens.
- Glaucoma can cause permanent blindness if left untreated. A cataract is classified as either congenital (present at birth) or acquired (develops after birth).
- Glaucoma is primarily a disease of older adults with most cases occurring after age 60. A cataract is primarily a disease of older people, however, it can occur at any point in life.
- Glaucoma and cataract are both treatable with surgery. A procedure called cataract extraction removes the natural lens from the eye and replaces it with an artificial lens implant. The procedure is very quick, usually taking less than 20 minutes to perform, although it requires a short recovery time as well as some type of patching during recovery to protect the eye from damage due to light exposure. In comparison, glaucoma surgery is an open-angle surgical procedure that takes place over two or more visits. It is also less successful than cataract surgery, highly dependent on the experience and training of the ophthalmologist.
- The cost of cataract surgery is much less than glaucoma surgery. Surgery to replace the lens is about $2,000; however, it can cost up to $8,000 for glaucoma surgery.
- Cataracts can occur in one or both eyes. Glaucoma usually occurs in both eyes if untreated or misdiagnosed.
- A cataract is very common with approximately 25% of adults over the age of 65 having some degree of cataracts. Glaucoma is less common with approximately 2% of adults over the age of 65 having glaucoma.
- Treating cataract before it causes vision loss is much easier than treating glaucoma since cataracts are not as dangerous as glaucoma if left untreated; however, no clinical studies have shown that early treatment leads to better outcomes for people with glaucoma.
- People with glaucoma may need to take eye drops every day, to keep the pressure of the fluid in their eyes at a normal level. Some people with glaucoma also need to use an artificial filter (e.g., contact lens) in front of their eyes or “sunglasses” other than at night. People with cataracts may not need to take eye drops every day; however, some people do need to use eye drops and/or artificial filters.
This was the article from Cataracts Vs Glaucoma we hope we helped you to find answears the basic questions of cataracts vs glaucoma.