Skip to main content


What is Glaucoma?

Glaucoma is a condition where the optic nerve becomes damaged. It is usually caused by fluid building up at the front of the eye and increasing the pressure inside of the eye.


Chronic open-angle glaucoma
Due to the chronic nature of this type of glaucoma, symptoms can develop over a long period of time, often unnoticed. Peripheral vision is gradually lost, starting from the edges of the vision and progressing inwards.

Acute angle-closure glaucoma
This type of glaucoma develops very quickly, often meaning symptoms are severe. Symptoms of acute angle-closure glaucoma include:

  • Redness of the eye
  • Headaches
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Intense pain
  • Seeing halo-like rings around lights
  • Loss of vision which develops quickly

Be aware that symptoms for this type of glaucoma are not consistent - you may experience symptoms for an hour or two before disappearing again.

Each time the symptoms appear, vision is damaged a little more. That's why it is vitally important to contact your GP immediately as it is an emergency and vital to get treatment and avoid further damage.

Secondary Glaucoma
Caused by other conditions such as uveitis, secondary glaucoma can also be caused by medication, operation or eye injuries.

With this type of glaucoma, symptoms also include seeing halo-like rings around lights as well as misty vision.

Development Glaucoma
Also known as congenial glaucoma, this can be difficult to detect in babies or young children.

If your child displays the below symptoms, arrange a visit to your local branch or GP as soon as possible:

  • Being sensitive to lights
  • Having a cloudy appearance to their eyes
  • Having watery eyes
  • Large eyes due to the pressure

Help and Advice:
During your eye exam, you may be offered an Optical Tomography (OCT) scan. This is a quick scan of the eye which, among other benefits, allows our optometrists to review the thickness of your eye surface if we find that the pressure of your eye is higher than normal. The scan can also help to review the chambers inside the eye and evaluate the risk of closed-angle glaucoma.

You can find out more about Glaucoma here.

Download the Glaucoma factsheet here