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(glôkō`mə), ocular disorder characterized by pressure within the eyeball caused by an excessive amount of aqueous humor (the fluid substance filling the eyeball). This causes pressure against the optic nerve and compression of the blood vessels of the eye—the resulting impairment of vision ranges from slight abnormalities to total blindness. Chronic open-angle glaucoma is the result of impeded drainage of aqueous humor. In acute angle-closure glaucoma, the anterior chamber of the eye is shallower and the iris may obstruct the meshwork at the entrance of the canal of Schlemm. Although glaucoma is a leading cause of blindness in the United States, with timely treatment blindness is almost always avoided.

Chronic glaucoma begins gradually over a period of months or years, usually in patients over the age of 40. There are no symptoms in the early stages, and the condition can be detected only by measurement of the intraocular pressure. Such an examination is recommended every three years for all persons over the age of 20. As the disease progresses, often the only symptom is a gradual loss of peripheral vision. Chronic glaucoma can usually be controlled with eye drops or pills that increase the outflow or decrease the production of aqueous humor; laser treatment is also effective in the early stages. If treatment is continued throughout life, useful vision will be preserved in most cases; untreated individuals will gradually become blind.

Acute closed-angle glaucoma, which accounts for only 10% of the incidence of the disease, begins abruptly with severe pain and blurred vision. It is a medical emergency that causes permanent blindness in two to five days if left untreated. Surgery is usually necessary.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia™ Copyright © 2013, Columbia University Press. Licensed from Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



(also called “yellow water” or “green water” in Russian—in glaucoma the region of the pupil sometimes begins to gleam with a yellowish gray or bluish gray light), a disease of the eyes, the principal symptom of which is an increase in intraocular pressure with a reduction of vision.

Intraocular pressure in glaucoma sometimes reaches 80 mm of mercury, or 10.67 kilonewtons (kN)/m2. (Normal pressure is 18-27 mm of mercury, or 2.4-3.6 kN/m2.) The pressure in the eye may rise spontaneously (primary glaucoma) or as the result of a previous or current disease of the eye (secondary glaucoma). The underlying cause of the disease is a disruption of the circulation of intraocular fluid—most commonly, difficulty in its drainage. Glaucoma usually develops in the elderly, often affecting both eyes, and as a rule proceeds chronically; in the absence of systematic treatment it is progressive. Glaucomas may be defined as either congestive (narrow angle), characterized by periodic clouding of vision, rainbowed halos around a light source, and a sensation of pressure in and around the eye, simple (open angle), in which these subjective phenomena are absent. In any form of glaucoma visual acuity gradually diminishes, the field of vision becomes limited, and the optic nerve atrophies. An acute attack of glaucoma, characterized by an abrupt rise in intraocular pressure, may develop at any stage of the disease; severe pains in and around the eye develop, there is reddening of the eyes, edema and clouding of the cornea, dilatation of the pupil, and reduction of vision, sometimes to the point of blindness. There is often accompanying nausea and vomiting. Glaucoma is the most common cause of blindness. The treatment may be medical or sometimes surgical. In the USSR prevention consists of examination of persons over 40 years of age and treatment of patients with established glaucoma at out-patient prevention and treatment clinics. Prevention of blindness from glaucoma involves early diagnosis of the disease and systematic treatment.


Averbakh, M. I. “Glaukoma.” In Oftalmologicheskie ocherki. Moscow, 1949.
Mnogotomnoe rukovodstvo po glaznym bolezniam, vol. 2. [Edited by V. N. Arkhangel’skii.] Moscow, 1960.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.


A disease of the eye characterized by increased fluid pressure within the eyeball.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.


a disease of the eye in which pressure within the eyeball damages the optic disc, impairing vision, sometimes progressing to blindness
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
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Four of these patients were later excluded due to cataract surgery (1 patient), nonadherence to antiglaucoma medication use (2 patients) and loss to follow-up (1 patient).
The number of antiglaucoma medications was reduced in postoperative period, i.e.
Kompella, "Hybrid dendrimer hydrogel/plga nanoparticle platform sustains drug delivery for one week and antiglaucoma effects for four days following one-time topical administration," ACS Nano, vol.
Use of antiglaucoma meds shifts the plot even higher, which means good control of IOP with hypotensive drops (Figure 3).
Without a thorough understanding of the impact of previous and current topical antiglaucoma medication use, it is not possible to gauge the true efficacy of adjunctive medications, SLT, and/or surgical interventions such as cataract extraction with or without MIGS.
Success of surgery was considered as postoperative intraocular pressure less than 21 mmHg in the absence of antiglaucoma medication or other intervention.
"The data were obtained before admission but after initial treatment, including oral antibiotic and topical antiglaucoma agents.
Jacobi reported that after combined procedure in eyes with exfoliation syndrome, the mean IOP of 32.5 mmHg with a mean of 2.1 antiglaucoma medications was decreased to the mean IOP of 18.1 mmHg with a mean of 0.2 antiglaucoma medications after 6 months.
Widening of iridocorneal angle and decrease in the number of antiglaucoma drugs were observed in all groups, but these were significant in the PACG group (p=0.001 and p<0.05, respectively).
Drug class listed Drug name in publication Actual drug class Apraclonidine Adrenergic agonist [Alpha.sub.2]-agonist Brimonidine (ophthalmic) Adrenergic agonist [Alpha.sub.2]-agonist; antiglaucoma Dapiprazole Miotic Alpha-blocker Dipivefrine Prostaglandin Prodrug of epinephrine Naphazoline (ophthalmic) Decongestant [Alpha.sub.1]-agonist; vasoconstrictor; imidazoline derivative Tetryzoline (ophthalmic) Decongestant Adrenergic agonist; vasoconstrictor; imidazoline derivative
Following procedure, Fluorometholone eye drops are instilled and advised to use thrice daily for one week and antiglaucoma therapy was advised when needed.