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Acute attack of glaucoma

What is an acute attack of glaucoma?

Acute attack of glaucomaAn acute attack of glaucoma develops as a result of a sudden and sharp increase in the intraocular pressure. Very often, the acute attack takes place against the background of chronic glaucoma which is associated with stress, supercooling, great physical loads, and continuous work with the head down. Sometimes, the attack may occur without any apparent reason.

Symptoms of an acute attack of glaucoma

A sharp pain in the eye is a basic symptom of an acute attack of primary glaucoma which causes headache (more often on the forehead and the temple on the side of the affected eye). This may be accompanied by nausea, vomiting, cardiac discomfort, brachycardia, and general weakness. All these symptoms make diagnosis difficult and due to this patients fail to receive urgent medical aid essential in acute attack of glaucoma. Treatment may be directed at another ailment which only aggravates the situation.

Under acute attack of glaucoma, the patients display:

  • Pain in the eye
  • Pain in the superciliary zone and the entire half of the head
  • Blurred vision and the appearance of iridescent circles when facing light.

What is to be done?

Under acute attack of glaucoma, it is necessary to have the fundus of the eye examined. In general the following symptoms are seen: red eyes, a dilated pupil, and absence of reaction to light. The pupil of the eye, which is normally black, turns green under the attack. The intraocular pressure of patients suffering from an acute attack of glaucoma goes sharply up (to 70–100 mm Hg); the eye is hardened and seems ‘stony’.

The main purpose of treatment in the case of an acute attack of glaucoma is to reduce the intraocular pressure and normalize the blood circulation in the eye with the aim of restoring nutrition of the retina and the optic nerve.

Please remember! It is essential to reduce intraocular pressure within the first few hours following the acute attack of glaucoma. With no timely medical assistance from qualified specialists, the vision can get irreversibly lost!
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