“As patients enter their 40’s, 50’s, and 60’s and beyond it is important for them to become aware of glaucoma risk factors that might be relevant to their individual situation,” commented Glaucoma Specialist Robert Daly, M.D. of Eyecare Medical Group in Portland.
“There is strong correlation between age and the likelihood of developing glaucoma. We know that your risk increases considerably after the age of 40. And if you are over 60 years of age-even if you have no other family or medical history that is significant-you are six times more likely to get glaucoma. A family history of glaucoma-especially among your brothers and sisters-can increase your risk to 4-9 times that of the average population,” noted Dr. Daly.
“Patients should take note of some recent research that suggests additional glaucoma risk factors may include long term use of oral contraceptive birth control pills, early natural menopause and obstructive sleep apnea,” shared Glaucoma Specialist Samuel Solish, M.D. “This is important for patients to know about. First, researchers reporting on the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), administered by the Centers for Disease Control, indicated that woman who had used birth control pills for long periods of time were twice as likely to develop glaucoma. Further, researchers reporting in the American Journal of Epidemiology found that those women who entered natural menopause at an early age were more likely to develop glaucoma. And finally, it appears that having sleep apnea exposes patients to significant risk of glaucoma. All three of these risk factors should prompt patients to seek routine eye exams with glaucoma evaluation in order to have early detection, diagnosis and treatment is necessary. In this way we are more able to help patients prevent vision loss from glaucoma,” stressed Dr. Solish.
Eyecare Medical Group is a leading ophthalmology practice in Portland, Maine staffed by a team of eye care specialists including eye doctors who are fellowship trained glaucoma specialists, retina specialists, cornea specialists and cataract and lens implant specialists-all board certified Ophthalmologists-as well as Optometrists, Opticians, technical and administrative staff who provide eye examinations for adults and children, cataract surgery and intraocular lens implants, (IOL), laser vision correction such as LASIK, diagnosis and treatment of cornea disease including cornea transplants, care for diseases of the retina including diabetes and age related macular degeneration and diagnosis and treatment of glaucoma.
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