Symptoms Of Glaucoma

Symptoms vary according to the type of glaucoma.

For most types of glaucoma it can take a long time for symptoms to develop, and significant damage to the eye and vision can be done before symptoms are noticed. This is why regular eye tests, which can identify glaucoma at an early stage, are so important.

Once symptoms do start to develop, they usually begin with gradual development of small blind spots starting in your peripheral (side) vision. Progression of this vision loss is so slow that it is often not noticed until a significant amount of vision has been lost. If untreated, the entire optic nerve can be destroyed leading to blindness.

Acute angle-closure glaucoma, does have noticeable symptoms as the build up of pressure in the eye in this case is much faster. Symptoms of acute angle-closure glaucoma vary but may include any of the following:

  • Blurred or narrowed field of vision
  • Severe pain in the eyes
  • Red eyes
  • Seeing halos or rainbows around lights
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Headaches

Acute angle-closure glaucoma is a medical emergency and you should seek immediate medical assistance if displaying symptoms. Fast medical attention can prevent blindness.

Congenital glaucoma can also show the following symptoms in babies and young children:

  • Unusually large eyes
  • Watering eyes
  • Cloudy eyes
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Poor vision
  • Jerky eyes (nystagmus)

Are both eyes affected?

Glaucoma can occur in one or both eyes.