Important Glaucoma Facts

* Glaucoma is a serious eye disease. If left untreated, it can lead to vision loss and blindness.

* Vision loss is usually preventable if glaucoma is detected early. There is no "cure" for glaucoma, but early detection and ongoing treatment can control the disease and usually preserve vision.

* Glaucoma usually has no symptoms until vision loss has occurred.

* Glaucoma is the second most common cause of legal blindness in the United States. It is the leading cause of blindness for African-Americans.

* Glaucoma is a chronic (ongoing) condition that requires lifelong monitoring and treatment. It is important for people with glaucoma to work with their Eye M.D.s to find a treatment plan that is right for them.

* Approximately 2.5 million Americans have glaucoma, but one half may be unaware that they have a potentially blinding disease because they have no symptoms.

* Your Eye M.D. can use a series of painless tests and exams to check you for glaucoma. Other tests may be done if your Eye M.D. suspects you may have glaucoma.

* Treatment for glaucoma can include medication. The best treatment for each person is determined by a number of factors, including type and severity of glaucoma and the person's medical history and lifestyle.

* Medications for glaucoma - even eye drops - can affect the whole body and may interact with other medications. It is very important for all your doctors to be aware of any medication you take.