Glaucoma Care at the University of South Florida Eye Institute
Glaucoma is the second-leading cause of permanent blindness in the United States, after macular degeneration. Worldwide, glaucoma is the leading cause of irreversible blindness. It is estimated that only half of the people with glaucoma in the US are aware that they have the disease. A complete eye exam is the only way to determine if a person does or does not have glaucoma. In general, all adults over the age of 40 should have regular eye exams to rule out this disease. Younger people, however, are not exempt from having glaucoma, which can affect any age group.
The USF Eye Institute is well-equipped to diagnose and manage virtually all types of glaucoma. Our clinic possesses state-of-the-art equipment for examining the eye, imaging the optic nerve, obtaining automated visual field tests, and performing multiple laser procedures. All of these are essential to the diagnosis and management of glaucoma. Our staff includes three fellowship-trained MD glaucoma specialists, supported by a glaucoma fellow, ophthalmology residents, and dedicated technical staff. When surgery is indicated for the treatment of glaucoma, our staff can offer most current options, including combined cataract and glaucoma surgery, trabeculectomy with Mitomicin C, use of Express Shunt implants, and the Ahmed and Baerveldt tube-shunt devices. We perform surgery at the Morsani Surgical Center of USF and at Tampa General Hospital.
Glaucoma treatment is, in most cases, a lifetime commitment, and we work with our patients to educate them in all but aspects of the disease. Much like the treatment of diabetes and systemic hypertension, the treatment of glaucoma requires a long-term working relationship between the patient and the physician. When this relationship is established, there is good probability that can vision can be preserved, even the most difficult cases.