I have been diagnosed as having thick corneas, which produced high pressure reading in my eyes. I have been taking eye drops, which successfully lowered the eye pressure. Do I have to continue to using the drops for the rest of my life? I am 57 yrs old and there is no history of glaucoma in my family. At this time, the doctor wants me to continue to use the drops and have my pressure tested every 6 months. Is this over kill? I have had the field vision test, which was normal. I do not have eye care insurance and as we all know, the eye drops are ridiculously expensive. I kind of liken it to me, at the age of 57 and having had a hysterectomy, being prescribed birth control pills to prevent a pregnancy that will never happen.
If you have medical insurance and see an MD ophthalmologist then your health insurance (not visual care insurance) should cover your visits. A thicker than normal cornea IS GOOD in that glaucoma is less likely, tends to be milder and the IOP in the eye is lower than the pressure measured by the blue light tonometer. For the opposite reasons a thin cornea especially below 500 microns is a bad thing.
I cannot tell if you need the drops. It is critical that you be under the care of a MD ophthalmologist and not an optometrist. The non-MD non-physician optometrist in my opinion does not have the training to diagnose and treat glaucoma although spending tens of millions of dollars in state legislatures has bought them the right to do this.
If you have glaucoma the drops are not ridculously expensive. They can keep you from going blind. Try and put that into perspective.
Find an Eye MD you for a second opinion at www.aao.org
He is an Eye MD. I was very happy with the news he had for me on Monday - field vision test perfect, IOP of 20 (down from 28), thick cornea, after 6 weeks of one drop in each eye a day. I have an appointment for 6 months from now to have the pressure tested again. I am tempted to use the Travatan drops every other night and see what the IOP is in 6 months.
He told me that I would only be considered to have glaucoma, if I had vision loss detected with the field vision test. He also said that my optic nerve looks normal and healthy. Since I had perfect peripheral vision, he said that I do not have glaucoma but just high IOP due to the thick corneas.
He also said that with the drops, their effectiveness wears down after 3-4 days.
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