What Does a Test for Glaucoma Involve?


Quick Answer

Tests for glaucoma involve measurements of internal eye pressure, visual acuity and peripheral vision, explains Mayo Clinic. Doctors may also check for optic nerve damage, measure corneal thickness and conduct more specialized tests.

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What Does a Test for Glaucoma Involve?
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Full Answer

Eye examinations designed to check for signs of glaucoma involve several tests, notes the Glaucoma Research Foundation. One of the most common tests is tonometry, which checks internal eye pressure. The pressure typically exceeds 20 milliliters of mercury in the eyes of individuals suffering from the disease. Another common test, ophthalmoscopy, involves checking the shape and the color of the optic nerve. If both tests show signs of abnormality, doctors may conduct two more tests.

The first, perimetry, checks the field of vision, and may be repeated once or twice a year if glaucoma is detected, explains the Glaucoma Research Foundation. The second test, gonioscopy, seeks to determine whether the angle formed when the iris and the cornea intersect is wide and open, a possible symptom of chronic glaucoma, or closed and narrow, a tentative indicator of acute glaucoma.

Eyes should be regularly checked for signs of glaucoma, warns the Glaucoma Research Foundation. The need for these examinations varies by age, ethnicity, preexisting conditions and other factors. For instance, individuals less than 40 years old should have their eyes checked every two to four years, while those over the age of 65 years should have their eyes examined every six to 12 months.

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