Senile glaucoma - causes and symptoms
There is such a science - geriatrics, it deals with the peculiarities of the course of pathological processes in the body of older people. In addition, geriatrics studies and develops methods for the prevention and treatment of diseases in such patients. But the problems of aging of the organs of vision refer to a separate direction - ophthalmoheriatry.
With age, all processes in the body slow down, the work of organs and systems worsens, hearing, smell, and vision drop. But the visual analyzer allows us to receive the greatest amount of information from the outside world. Eyes serve us to determine the distance range, assess the appearance, color, volume, they are adapted for vision in bright light and in semi-darkness.
With a weakening of vision, a person begins to navigate less well in space, and information about the external world is not so complete. However, all these changes in principle are quite natural, because they are related to the general process of aging of the body.
Features of glaucoma in old age
For the elderly, there are tendencies to certain diseases. As for the organs of vision, in this case, the probability of developing such diseases as macular degeneration, cataract, glaucoma is significantly increased. After 80 years, 20% of people in this age group have signs of glaucoma to varying degrees - first of all, the ciliary body is affected, and the iris of the eyes.
Free circulation and outflow of intraocular fluid with age are also difficult, and this contributes to the development of increased intraocular pressure, secondary dystrophy of the optic nerve and retina. Unfortunately, healthy aging, when there is a natural wilting of the body, is not so often, so, as a rule, glaucoma is accompanied by problems in other organs and systems.
Quite often it accompanies such diseases as diabetes, arterial hypertension, atherosclerosis, varicose veins, problems with the gastrointestinal tract. In this regard, in ophthalmologists, gerontologists, the task is not only to diagnose a disease that can be masked for another problem, but also to choose the right treatment, taking into account all the accompanying pathology.
How glaucoma develops in old age
In most cases, glaucoma develops gradually, but over time, a person notices that not always he sees equally well. In a number of cases, the pathology is one-sided, but after a few years the second eye is necessarily involved in the process. Most often, patients get to the doctor at the stage of visual acuity reduction.
But there are a number of symptoms that require attention:
- When viewing objects in bright light, glowing colored circles appear;
- Temporary veil before the eyes;
- Feeling of opening in the eye, pressure in the superciliary;
- Headaches in the evening and during sleep on a low pillow, after being in a dark room, lifting weights, etc.
If you ignore these signs, then very soon your vision will drop by so much that you can talk about the coming blindness.
In severe and rapid progression, glaucoma can manifest as an acute attack, which was triggered by psycho-emotional or physical overexertion, increased fluid intake. During an attack, there is a very severe headache and eye pain, which is accompanied by a sharp deterioration of vision, weakness and sweating.
In some cases, the attack can be masked for angina, myocardial infarction, neurocirculatory dystonia due to the irradiation of pain in the left half of the thorax, abdomen, nausea and vomiting. In this case, one can not delay a minute, without ophthalmic emergency care, atrophy of the optic nerve occurs and blindness occurs within two days.
Reminder for the patient with glaucoma
- You can not use a large amount of liquid at a time. Optimum - no more than a glass at a time. In a day you can take in any form( tea, juice, compotes, soups) not more than 1, 5 liters of liquid.
- In the diet should be excluded salty, smoked and fried foods, which can provoke thirst and increase fluid intake. At this age, dairy and vegetable products should predominate in the diet, meat should be consumed not more often 3-4 times a week, but the amount of vitamins and minerals should be increased at the expense of vegetables and fruits. Food should be enriched with dietary fiber to prevent constipation - additional efforts during defecation can cause increased intraocular pressure.
- When homesteading is prohibited to be with the head down, watering the plants should be done only with a hose, lifting more than 5-6 kg is also prohibited. In bright and sunny days, you should use protective or medical glasses with green glasses. But glasses with darkened glasses are forbidden.
- Work at home, which is accessible by age is permitted, but there remains a restriction on a long stay with the head down.
- Visual loads do not need to be limited, but the workplace must have sufficient illumination, otherwise a sharp jump in intraocular pressure may occur.
- TV viewing should take place in a well-lit room.
- During sleep and rest, it is necessary to raise the head end with pillows. It is not recommended to close windows with thick curtains that prevent the penetration of natural light.
- When consulting or correcting treatment for concomitant diseases, the doctor should always be warned about the presence of glaucoma. This is due to the fact that with this disease, it is strictly forbidden to use drugs that contain atropine.
- Visits to the ophthalmologist should be at least once a quarter. In addition, a patient with glaucoma should independently monitor blood pressure, and in the clinic, take blood tests to monitor the prothrombin index and the lipid content in the blood.