World Glaucoma Week 2012

Having a father who got almost blind before dying due to his diabetes, I can help but to be really conscious about my health and be aware as to how it will affect us. It is really sad to remember those times, that's why I promised not to let myself suffer such thing. And so, whenever I can get information on health issues,  especially if its about diabetes or eyes, in this case, I do get it first-hand... JUST TO BE SURE.

Last week, I was invited to take a seat and listen to a group of eye doctors who are in support of the World Glaucoma Week. For those who are unaware like me, the whole world will be "celebrating" the World Glaucoma Week" this week, March 12 to 16. In line with this celebration, there are worldwide and local programs that the Glaucoma Societies have prepared to help us detect this blinding disease.

Glaucoma is a complicated eye disease in which damage to the optic nerve leads to progressive, irreversible vision loss. It is a condition that affects the eye's optic nerve, a bundle of tissue that carries information about what one sees from the eyes to your brain. This damage is usually - but not always -caused by the build-up of naturally produced liquid within the eye. When fluid cannot escape, the resulting pressure build-up causes the optic nerve to deteriorate, resulting in vision loss and irreversible blindness.

Here in the Philippines, according to the presentation of Dr. Rainier Covar, MD, a member of the Research Committee of the Philippine Glaucoma Society, glaucoma has been ranked as the leading cause of blindness in both eyes. Sadly, as he added, there are currently no reliable estimates as to how many Filipinos have the disease.

Dr. Rainier Covar, MD

On his 30-minute presentation, he shared to us these slides that I think would help us guys understand easier the causes and effects of glaucoma to our eyes - to our lives.

On the other hand, Dr. Jose Ma. Martinez, MD, Vice President of the Philippine Glaucoma Society, showed to us the the list of activities of the organization this worldwide fight against blindness.

Dr. Jose Ma. Martinez, MD

There will be a countywide glaucoma awareness events to watch out for where there will eye screening courtesy of Philippine Glaucoma Society and some leading industry partners. Here's the list.

Even though they say that glaucoma mostly detected by the age of 45, blindness from the disease can be prevented thru early diagnosis and treatment, and this is the RIGHT WEEK to do that. Visit the nearest eye doctor to you!

Christine Jacob hosting the event

Prevention is better than cure, but since there are really no cure for glaucoma, probably, the best way is to at least fight it to live a happy life! :-)

BTW, according to Dr. Mario V. Aquino, founding President of the Philippine Glaucoma Society, and one of the panelist on this this event, glaucoma blindness has nothing to do with diabetes blindness. Those are two different diseases.

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