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January is National Glaucoma Awareness month, what you should know

(Chelsie Burroughs/ KTXS News){p}{/p}
(Chelsie Burroughs/ KTXS News)

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January is National Glaucoma Awareness month. This important month is the time to spread the word about this sight-stealing disease. Something as simple as eyesight can be easily taken for granted. This month is important because it reminds all of us to get regular eye exams and show support for those suffering from this optic nerve disease.

“It’s slowly progressing and the ramification, if it's undiscovered, you’re at risk of losing the side vision,” said Marianna Konradi, a Local Abilene Eye Doctor. “As long as you're staying up to date with your preventative screenings and treatments then glaucoma can be caught ahead of time,” said the Ophthalmologists.

Glaucoma, or silent blindness, is an eye disease that damages the optic nerve. This nerve connects the eye to the brain, which causes blindness. With this disease, up to 40% of eyesight can be lost. Doctor Marianna Konradi - a local eye specialist, says this eye illness negatively impacts more than 3 million Americans in different ways.

“Glaucoma does not cause pain, and it is not really a concern to most people until it's too late, " said the Eye Expert. “By then your side vision has been so reduced that your daily life is impacted because you’re missing things to the sides,” said the medical Professional

According to the Department of Health and Human Services, the main demographic that are vulnerable for this disease include people who have a family history, African Americans over the age of 35, people over the age of 60, or those who have a thin cornea. Luckily, there are treatments for this disease, thanks to technology.

“One of the interesting things now is that there's an eye drop that's an implant and it's a sustained release and that's really important because it is really hard to consistently reuse your eye drops. It’s something that people can’t just always perform regularly,” said Konradi.

Those who are experiencing symptoms of this disease are instructed to immediately see an Ophthalmologist.

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