World Glaucoma Week – March 10-16


Glaucoma affects millions of people worldwide and is a leading cause of irreversible blindness. Those with the disease have elevated eye pressure, which causes damage to the optic nerve and ultimately leads to blindness. Glaucoma may progress silently with no obvious symptoms, leading it to be known as the “sneak thief of sight.”

If glaucoma is detected early enough, however, eye doctors can provide treatment to halt or slow progression of the disease. World Glaucoma Week, March 10-16, is designated by the World Glaucoma Association and the World Glaucoma Patient Association to remind people to have their eyes checked for early signs of glaucoma.

“Early detection is paramount and treatment in the form of eye drops, laser or in severe cases, eye surgery, is readily available,” said Joern B. Soltau, M.D., an ophthalmologist specializing in glaucoma with UofL Physicians – Eye Specialists and acting chair of the Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences at UofL.

Soltau adds that first-degree relatives of patients suffering from glaucoma are at a ten-fold risk of developing glaucoma themselves, so patients who have a parent or sibling with glaucoma should be screened regularly.

One way to remind others to be checked is by wearing green during World Glaucoma Week. To have your eyes checked, call the Kentucky Lions Eye Center at 502-588-0550.