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Pressure inside the eye

By Medication Blog Subscribe to RSS | August 10th 2012 | Views:
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About 1 in 10 adults over 40 have ocular hypertension. However, only about 1 in 10 people with ocular hypertension go on to get glaucoma. So experts disagree about whether or not to treat the high pressure when it's not causing damage to the optic nerve.

A lot of research has been done on whether to treat this high pressure, but the results are mixed. We haven't yet judged these studies using the same scientific standards that we use to judge other studies on this site. But we are including details because you may have questions about these treatments.

A summary of five high-quality studies (called randomised controlled trials) suggests that if you've got ocular hypertension, using prescription eye drops can cut your risk of glaucoma by about half, over five years. These eye drops contain medicine to bring down the pressure in your eye.

But another study found that treating ocular hypertension with eye drops did not help stop glaucoma. Between 1 in 10 and 2 in 10 of the people in this study went on to get glaucoma, whether they used eye drops or a dummy treatment (called a placebo). The study lasted five years.

If you have ocular hypertension, you should discuss the pros and cons of treatment with a doctor who specialises in conditions affecting the eye (an ophthalmologist). Your decision will probably depend on your personal circumstances, including:

- How high the pressure is, and whether it affects one or both of your eyes

- Your background risk of glaucoma, including your age, your family history and your ethnic background

- How you feel about using eye drops every day for many years

- How you feel about the possibility of side effects from treatment

Medication Blog - About Author:
Periodic eye exams by your optician or opthalmologist are essential to monitor the health of your eyes and diagnose suspected problems. You can reduce the amount of fluid in the eye, which decreases pressure inside the eye. Alphagan eye drops is used to treat open-angle glaucoma or ocular hypertension (high pressure inside the eye). It may also be used for other purposes not listed in this medication guide.

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