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22 Mar 2019, Edition - 1347, Friday

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Coimbatore

3 to 5 per cent of Indians at risk of glaucoma

Covai Post Network

Coimbatore: About three to five per cent of Indian are at risk of glaucoma, which is the third leading reason for preventable blindness, a leading city eye surgeon said Saturday.

The alarming equation is that over 90 per cent of them are yet to be diagnosed, even as. Glaucoma silently steals vision with irreversible loss, if undetected and untreated,. Dr R Chitra, Medical Director of the Eye Foundation, told reporters here.

This raises the alarm signals to evolve strategic protocols, adopt screening programs to detect the disease at its early onset, she said adding that It demands an increased awareness to be created to educate the public encouraging them to undergo routine and complete eye evaluation with stress on glaucoma detection.

The good news is that we have effective tools to diagnose and treat glaucoma preventing further vision loss if detected in time, Chitra said.

Approximately, 11.2 million Indians (6.48 open angle and 2.54 angle closure), above the age of 40 years are likely to be inflicted with this disease amounting to 12.8 per cent of blindness in our country.

The prevalence of this disease is about 2 to 13 per cent according to various population based studies and it is estimated that another 4.7 million Indians have ocular hypertension viz. high pressure in the eye without nerve damage (but are at high risk for future optic nerve damage), Chitra said on the eve of World Glaucoma Week beginning from tomorrow.

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