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Glaucoma & Retinal Exams: All You Need to Know

At Dolphins Optometrists, we specialise in providing comprehensive and accurate examinations and images of your eyes to spot diseases and maintain eye health. One important disease we encounter is glaucoma. Therefore, we perform in-depth retinal imaging and examinations to assess the health of your retinas and identify early causes of glaucoma. So, if you are […]
model of an eye to examine
June 29, 2022

At Dolphins Optometrists, we specialise in providing comprehensive and accurate examinations and images of your eyes to spot diseases and maintain eye health. One important disease we encounter is glaucoma. Therefore, we perform in-depth retinal imaging and examinations to assess the health of your retinas and identify early causes of glaucoma. So, if you are suffering from symptoms of glaucoma or would like to get your retinas tested, book a retinal exam today.

At Dolphins Optometrists, we provide a wide array of services. Whether you require new lenses or frames for your glasses and sunglasses or need an eye test or something a bit more complex, such as Orthokeratology, we can help you. To learn more about our fantastic services, explore our website or contact us today.

In this article, we will be covering the following topics:

  • What is Glaucoma?
  • Causes of Glaucoma
  • Types of Glaucoma
  • Retinal Exams at Dolphins Optometrists for Treatment
model of a the eye an retinal region

How Can a Retinal Exam Prevent Glaucoma?

What is Glaucoma?

Glaucoma is an eye condition affecting many people where the optic nerve, which connects the eye to the brain, becomes damaged. This can lead to a loss of vision. The damage is usually caused by an increase in pressure inside the eye. It’s usually caused by fluid building up in the front part of the eye, which increases pressure inside the eye. This pressure is called intra-ocular pressure (IOP). This pressure can damage the optic nerve over time and cause a loss of vision.

This condition can affect people of all ages, but it is most common in adults over 50. The earlier this condition is detected, the better the chances are for preserving vision. That’s why it’s important for everyone to have regular eye exams, even if they don’t think they have any symptoms.

Causes of Glaucoma

There are a variety of causes of glaucoma. Generally speaking, it derives from a build-up in pressure of the eye when fluid cannot be drained properly. This increase in pressure, therefore, leads to damage to the optic nerve and retina.

It is not always clear as to why glaucoma occurs, however, there are a few factors that can increase one’s risk of developing it.

Age – Glaucoma becomes more common as we age. Over time, our body becomes damaged and worn, it is less able at performing tasks, such as removing fluid from the eye efficiently. Therefore, causing the onset of glaucoma.

Family History – Glaucoma can be a hereditary disease. If you have a relative that suffers from glaucoma, you could potentially be at a higher risk. If your relatives have glaucoma, we would recommend undergoing regular retinal exams to monitor it

Ethnicity – There are different types of glaucoma and different ethnic groups are susceptible to the different types of it. Some types can progress more rapidly than other types. That being said, anyone can develop it regardless of their ethnicity, so it is always best to be careful.

Other Medical Conditions – People with conditions such as short-sightedness, long-sightedness and diabetes are at a higher risk of developing glaucoma. These conditions can affect the way that glaucoma can develop and progress, so it is important to monitor this as well as other conditions too!

Types of Glaucoma

Primary Open Angle Glaucoma

A common type of glaucoma is “Primary Open Angle Glaucoma“. It is considered that the level of fluid (aqueous humour) in the eye is too high. Management requires medication or sometimes medical procedures in early cases to help lower the amount of fluid in the eye. If left untreated, this can damage the optic nerve and lead to a loss of vision.

Acute Angle Closure Glaucoma

This type of glaucoma caused by the fluid drainage channels in the eye becoming suddenly blocked. This can raise the pressure inside the eye very quickly.

Secondary Glaucoma

Secondary Glaucoma is caused by another underlying eye condition, such as Uveitis (inflammation of the eye) or Cataracts (a clouding of the eye’s lens). These diseases can affect the pressure inside your eye, thus causing damage to the retina.

Childhood Glaucoma

This is a very rare condition that occurs in young children. It is caused by abnormalities in the eye, that cause damage to the optic nerve.

Symptoms of Glaucoma

Glaucoma does not usually cause any symptoms to begin with. It tends to develop slowly over many years and affects the edges of your vision (peripheral vision) first. You may not notice any difference in your vision at first. However, if the condition progresses, you may eventually start to experience:

  • Gradual loss of peripheral vision
  • Tunnel vision – where your field of vision is reduced to just what’s in the centre of your vision
  • Blurred vision

Acute Angle Closure Glaucoma will give rise to symptoms such as:

  • Eye pain
  • Headaches
  • Tenderness around the eye
  • Nausea and vomiting

Early diagnosis and treatment of glaucoma are important because once damage to your optic nerve has occurred, it is permanent and cannot be reversed. This can lead to blindness. Therefore, it is important to seek regular eye and retinal exams to monitor the health of your eyes and spot early signs of glaucoma.

How a Retinal Exam Can Help

One way to help deal with glaucoma is to have regular retinal exams. In a retinal exam, an eye care professional looks at the back of your eye to check for signs of damage or disease. This examination can help detect glaucoma early when it is most treatable

If you have glaucoma, regular retinal exams  help your eye care professional track the progress of the disease and adjust your treatment accordingly.

Even if you don’t have glaucoma, retinal exams are an important part of maintaining good eye health. So be sure to schedule regular appointments with our optometrists at Dolphins.

Retinal Imaging at Dolphins Optometrists

At Dolphins Optometrists, we use cutting-edge technology to perform comprehensive and accurate retinal exams by taking multiple, in-depth images. This allows us to accurately assess your eyes and identify any conditions.

Zeiss OCT

OCT (Optical Coherence Tomography) is a technology that measures the layers of your retinas. This is a simple, non-invasive test which takes just a few seconds, allowing us to identify any potential problems with the retina at an early stage.

OCT analysis is a commonly used practice in combating glaucoma, as it can be used to track the thinning of retinal nerve fibre layers over time. This helps us to catch early signs of glaucoma and other retinal degenerative diseases such as macular degeneration so that we can provide you with the best possible treatment and develop a management plan to help you.


Another revolutionary technology we use in a retinal exam is the Optos. Where traditional retinal photographs capture a 45-degree-wide angle, the Optos can capture up to 200 degrees. Therefore, we can gather far more data and images to assess your eye health and therefore identify early signs of glaucoma or other diseases. This is an incredibly valuable technology when considering retinal exams as it helps us to catch any retinal changes which could be indicative of a problem, particularly glaucoma and macular degeneration.

Overall, retinal exams are important to help diagnose and deal with glaucoma. At Dolphins Optometrists, we use the latest technology available to provide you with the most comprehensive and accurate retinal exam possible. Even if you do not suspect that you have glaucoma, regular eye tests and retinal exams are incredibly important. We cannot always treat the disease, but early detection is vital in maintaining your eye health.

Retinal imaging is incredibly important to us as we can identify any problems early and accurately. When we identify any conditions early, such as glaucoma, we will develop an in-depth management plan for you, including referrals to other medical professionals. We will handle your condition with great professionalism and efficiency, helping you to overcome conditions we encounter.

Contact Us

If you would like to learn more about Glaucoma and how a retinal exam at Dolphins Optometrists can help, then explore our website or contact us today on 01444 454 808 or Our expert optometrists will be more than happy to discuss any of our services with you and help you to book a retinal exam should you require it.

Article: Phoenix Marketing

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