World Glaucoma Week aims to spread awareness about vision loss
Every year, the week of 10 to 17 March is marked as World Glaucoma Week.
The aim of this week is to spread awareness about glaucoma. Glaucoma is one of the leading causes of vision loss in the world.
Glaucoma is also called Kala Motia in India.
Data shows that the top five causes of blindness are - cataracts, refractive errors, glaucoma, age-related macular degeneration, and diabetic retinopathy.
These disorders account for 75% of all visual impairments in the world.
Experts estimate that around 60 million people suffer from glaucoma globally. This number is expected to increase to 80 million by 2020 due to a rise in the aging population.
One-sixth of these patients will be in India. However, 90% of glaucoma patients remain undetected in India.
This means that thousands of people are at a high risk of going blind.
Glaucoma is caused due to a slow and continuous damage to the optic nerve. This nerve takes signals from the eye to the brain.
There are many reasons why the optic nerve gets damaged. The most common reason is increased pressure inside the eyes.
Early detection of glaucoma can ensure that further damage to the optic nerve can be stopped to prevent loss of vision.