I am Glaucoma
suspect. Observed 3 years ago. Ophthalmologist
said a 20% chance of developing glaucoma. My pressure is around 23 in one...24 in other. (not sure if wide-angle or close). He also said a 20% chance of going blind if I get glaucoma. Eyes have remained unchanged in 3 years. No optic nerve damage so far. Have taken the Visual Field Test
(looking in white circular dome) 3 years ago. Result was OK. I will take another Visual Field test in 6 months. He said I have a thick cornea which I already know can sometimes elevate someones eye pressure. I also already know that people are different -- some can tolerate a high pressure and not develop glaucoma. I also know that with some people, they will develop glaucoma and nerve damage even when their pressure is controlled with medicine in the normal range. I also know starting a glaucoma medication is life-long.
Myself: 51 years old. near-sighted. long-time smoker. no diabetes in family. muscular degeneration on father's side.
I know a doctors combines many things (optic nerve examination, visual test, patient history etc.) when he make a determination on what kind of percentage you have of getting glaucoma. But the point remains -- the percentage number says it all. Here is my summary and question. There have been large studies that starting eye drop medication will lower your chance of developing glaucoma by approximately 10%. Doctors know about this. Some expert doctors have said they believe 20% is the magic number that they will start a glaucoma suspect patient with drops. In similar cases, other doctors will say 25% or even 30%. There is some controversy on this issue within the medical field.
My question is....given my situation (information, test information, history, etc), do you believe that I should ask my doctor for a more aggressive approach? (meaning that I should ask him if I can start medication now?)
Or, do you believe given my situation that my doctor is making the correct decision by simply keeping an eye on things. (regular check-ups etc)
I appreciate your help. But I do need an second opinion answer to my actual question. you feel I should try to start medication now? Or take a wait and see approach?
Thank you very much. If you need more information about my eyes, please email me.
PS: I don't need any information about Glaucoma "in general" or what happens to a person after they have it.