Date(s) - 10/03/2019 - 16/03/2019
Glaucoma is a group of eye diseases that cause progressive damage of the optic nerve at the point where it leaves the eye to carry visual information to the brain.
If left untreated, most types of glaucoma progress (without warning nor obvious symptoms to the patient) towards gradually worsening visual damage and may lead to blindness. Once incurred, visual damage is mostly irreversible, and this has led to glaucoma being described as the “silent blinding disease” or the “sneak thief of sight”.
A wide range of publicity-attracting activities around the world involve ophthalmologists, optometrists and other eye care workers in hospitals, universities, clinics, private practices include many private individuals, especially those with glaucoma or with family members with glaucoma. Glaucoma societies and glaucoma patient associations all participate.
Each year we adopt a common theme that is then adapted to local conditions; this unites our efforts. Recently we have concentrated on First Degree Relatives (FDRs) as they have a ten-fold increase in life-long glaucoma risk. If FDRs were to act on this information with regular glaucoma optic nerve tests, it would be likely to save a great deal of sight.
The glaucomas cause progressive damage to the vision; they do so without warning till later in the disease process and while treatment is effective in arresting the disease, it cannot reverse damage already present. The earlier the diagnosis, the less damage done and the more vision there is to save.