Screening and early detection can eliminate irreversible blindness
Hyderabad, March 8, 2017: L V Prasad Eye Institute (LVPEI) plans a series of activities to commemorate Glaucoma Awareness Week, from March 12-18, 2017, to bring public focus on the eye disease that affects both adults and children. A Glaucoma Awareness Walk is being organised on March 12 to create more understanding and knowledge on Glaucoma, which is seen as the leading cause of irreversible blindness in India.
Glaucoma is a disorder associated with increase in the eye pressure, and is characterized by damage to the optic nerve leading to irreversible blindness. Currently, in India, every 8th individual or nearly 40 million aged 40 years or older either has glaucoma or is at risk of developing the disease. 11.2 million Indians suffer from the disease with 1.1 million blind, including children. Glaucoma more commonly affects people beyond the age of 40 years. High myopes, diabetics and those with a positive family history have higher risk of developing glaucoma. Screening family members of patients with glaucoma is mandatory, as this disease can affect siblings and children of patients with glaucoma in up to 10‐20% of cases.
61 million persons worldwide have glaucoma and that is expected to rise to almost 80 million by the year 2020. Blindness from glaucoma is 80% preventable, yet almost 7 million people are blind from glaucoma in the world, and 2/3 of the world's blind and visually impaired are women. Ninety percent of Glaucoma in the country is undetected, mostly due to lack of awareness. L V Prasad Eye Institute will also organise a Glaucoma Education Forum on March 18 to educate the general public on the harmful effects of prolonged steroid use.
Glaucoma cannot be prevented, but if it is diagnosed and treated early, the disease can be controlled. Loss of vision caused by glaucoma is irreversible and cannot be restored. However, successfully lowering eye pressure can help prevent further visual loss from glaucoma. Most people with glaucoma do not go blind if they follow their treatment plan and have regular eye exams. Dr Sirisha Senthil, Head of Glaucoma Service at LVPEI said, “Most people with glaucoma have no early symptoms or pain from this increased pressure, hence it is important to see your eye doctor regularly so that glaucoma can be diagnosed and treated before long-term visual loss occurs.”
About L V Prasad Eye Institute
The L V Prasad Eye Institute (LVPEI) was established in 1986-87 at Hyderabad as a not-for-profit, non-government, public-spirited, comprehensive eye care institution. LVPEI is governed by two trusts: the Hyderabad Eye Institute and the Hyderabad Eye Research Foundation. The Institute is a World Health Organization Collaborating Centre for Prevention of Blindness and a Global Resource Center for VISION 2020: The Right to Sight initiative. LVPEI has six active arms to its areas of operations namely Clinical Services, Education, Research, Rehabilitation and Sight Enhancement Services, Eye Bank, and Public Health and Rural Outreach. For more information, visit www.lvpei.org
For further information, please contact:
Dr Sreedevi Yadavalli
Head - Communications & Corporate Relations, L V Prasad Eye Institute, Hyderabad
Tel: +91 040 23547254, +91 040 30612371; Mobile: +91 9849171895