My Personal Experience with Glaucoma

I sat in the ophthalmologist’s office, trying desperately to breathe normally. As he sat across from me, he explained that in accordance with the test he had performed, the results were not positive. I had lost ninety percent of the sight in my left eye and I was not going to get it back.

I suppose it was the shock of this news that made me feel calm. I remember thinking that at least I had one good eye left and if I could keep my one good eye then I would be okay. I called my husband from the doctors’ office and asked him to meet me there right away. I was glad I had someone to call, this was no time to be alone.

That was almost thirteen years ago. I was fortunate enough to have worked for a major corporation so I was able to take advantage of the resources of their medical department. The medical department referred me to the ophthalmologist in whose office I sat that morning. When I underwent the vision field test on my right eye, I was able to follow the moving light on a screen very closely as it moved around a perimeter. Every time you see the light you hit this little monitor which is attached to your finger. It is computer generated and very accurately documents your sight. However, when I was tested on my left eye, it was very sad. I realized at that moment that I had absolutely no sight in my left eye.

The ophthalmologist recommended another doctor who was a Glaucoma specialist who has been my doctor throughout my illness. Even though I went on to work relying on one eye for the next ten years before I retired, I had to undergo about eight consecutive eye operations on my left eye since there was a great deal of internal eye damage. The primary purpose for the eye operations was to lower my eye pressure so that the liquid could escape normally out of the eye. The operations became an annual procedure. I also had laser surgery as an office procedure many times since the normal tendency of the scar was to close and form scar tissue. Along with that I had two operations on my right eye (my good eye) due to a severe increase in the liquid not naturally flowing in and out of my eye and of course the danger of losing my sight in this eye as well.

I have what is medically termed angle-closure glaucoma. In angle-closure glaucoma, the angle formed by the cornea and the iris closes. The iris is plastered against the trabecular meshwork, which prevents the aqueous humor from reaching the drainage channels. This can lead to a rapid increase in intraocular pressure, a serious medical condition. I did an Internet search under Glaucoma for this technical definition.

My initial introduction to glaucoma came about as a result of my mother losing her sight. My mother had suffered from diabetics for about twenty years before she completely lost her sight. We would later learn that diabetics can in fact trigger glaucoma in diabetic patients over a period of time. Research and the medical profession had not advanced to what they are today. My mother spent many years talking about seeing little black spots everywhere she looked, but no one thought anything of it. In fact before I was to be married, my mother’s glaucoma had escalated to the point where she was totally blind. My mother never did see me in my wedding dress on my wedding day, but there she was, smiling and talking with other people, some people did not even realize that she was sightless. Of course, she managed this with the help of her sister who never left her side.

I must say that for many years I heard people say that glaucoma is a silent killer, meaning that in my particular experience there was no pain associated with sight loss. It is the oddest thing in the world I must say. As I sat in the doctors’ office, I was in shock not only because I had lost my sight in one eye but that I had actually lost my sight and did not even realize it. Today, since I only rely on my one eye, I am in the habit of testing my sight by covering one eye at a time and actually testing to see if you can ‘see’ out of each eye individually. This is a quick check that doctors recommend for everyone, including children.

Personally, I must say I was determined to live a normal life. I wanted to work and retire as everybody else. As I returned to work after each operation, I continued to work harder on my job, making as many personal adjustments as I could. I did not want to be considered to be handicapped! Most people who know me personally forget that I can only see out of one eye. Besides I faced a real dilemma given my work situation. If I had lost my sight in both eyes I would have been diagnosed as legally blind and therefore entitled to full disability. However, since I could see out of one eye I could not be deemed to be fully disabled, therefore the best I could have gotten was a less demanding job possibly with a cut in pay. I did not want that.

I am now retired and continue to be under my doctor’s care. I see him every three months on average and take my obligatory eye drops every day. I would love not to have this medical condition, but I do and that is my reality.


Comments 20 comments

tsadjatko profile image

tsadjatko 5 years ago from maybe (the guy or girl) next door

Have you looked into these topics - do a google search

Yag laser peripheral iridotomies

Treat and Cure Glaucoma Naturally!

New Discoveries That Could Cure Glaucoma

Thanks for sharing your plight


Guanta profile image

Guanta 5 years ago from New York City Author

Thank you very much for your comment tsadjatko. Will read your suggestions.


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

You are a brave lady. I admire your courage.

An informative and very useful article. Voted that way.


Guanta profile image

Guanta 5 years ago from New York City Author

Thank you so much WillStarr, I'm glad that sometimes our personal expriences, although difficult, can actualy help others. Thank you for voting.


ladyjojo profile image

ladyjojo 5 years ago

Oh am so sorry to here that about your eye.

I wear glasses for 11 years now i am only 23 years old and i think my sight isn't good for my age. Atleast i don't have your complaint i went by and eye specialist few days ago to check my eyes because my left eye has been paining like crazy for weeks. Thank God it's nothing major like infection etc. Just a strain on the eyes because my glasses need to change and my right eye isn't as good as the left.

Believe God for your healing Guanta. Pray and only believe all things are possible. HAVE FAITH IN GOD , don't let it waver. Can't wait for that power again to heal the sick, raise the dead etc.


Guanta profile image

Guanta 5 years ago from New York City Author

Hi ladyjojo thank you. It was a good idea for you to visit your eye doctor, I too now realize I have to upgrade my glasses.

Thank you for your words of encouragement. God bless


ladyjojo profile image

ladyjojo 5 years ago

You're welcome ;)


Ddraigcoch profile image

Ddraigcoch 5 years ago from UK

Eye sight is some thing so many people take for granted. I think you are a good strong character and I wish you all the best with your eyesight and hope it does not get worse.


Guanta profile image

Guanta 5 years ago from New York City Author

Thank you so much Ddraigcoch. Thank you for your kind words. I'm going to stay positive. Thank you much. Welcome.


RealHousewife profile image

RealHousewife 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

Guanta - I am so glad I found this hub. I am going to have my eyes checked asap. I did not realize this could be so serious. My step dad is an anesthesiologist and I was complaining about my vision and he said I needed to make sure I don't have the beginning of glaucoma and I blew it off because you know it's my parent:) After reading - thank you for a wonderful in depth explanation. I am sorry for your trouble - you have a terrific outlook and I admire that. I really enjoyed reading the excellent hub!


Guanta profile image

Guanta 5 years ago from New York City Author

Hi RealHousewife, I'm really glad this information can be useful to you. Yes, be sure that you follow through with an eye exam. Glaucoma can be kept under control if addressed early I know this from taking drops for my good eye. Thank you for your very kind words.


RealHousewife profile image

RealHousewife 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

Hey thank you - you may have saved my sight!!


Barbsbitsnpieces profile image

Barbsbitsnpieces 5 years ago from Napoleon, Henry County, Ohio, USA

@Guanta...Thanks for sharing this Hub! Very useful!


Guanta profile image

Guanta 5 years ago from New York City Author

Hi Barbsbitsnpieces, thank you so much for stopping by. I'm glad you found this hub useful. Sometimes our personal experiences are our best teachers. Thanks again.


Savvycruzr profile image

Savvycruzr 5 years ago

Hello Guanta, thanks for sharing your profound glaucoma experiences with us. Your article has rekindled my interest in glaucoma treatment and cure. A likeable maternal uncle of mine told me late last year that he was recently diagnosed with glaucoma - the revelation was stunning to me because I had read before that glaucoma has no cure. So I got online to do some research on the latest treatments for it because it can afflict anyone.

After reading your hub article - it finally occurred

to me that our eyes are indeed very important and preventive medicine should be undertaken before

things get out of hand.During my research, I found an article entitled "New Eye Drop Could Save Sight of Millions" located @

www.familyhealthguide.co.uk/new-eye-drop-could-save-sight-of-millions.html

I hope the weblink helps anyone that reads your hub - and I'll get back here as soon as I find any useful latest trends in the final cure for glaucoma.

Thanks again for sharing!


Guanta profile image

Guanta 5 years ago from New York City Author

Hi Savvycruzr, thank you for your comment and sharing of your information about your uncle. I am definitely going to read the article you pointed out to me. Thank you for sharring.


Teddletonmr profile image

Teddletonmr 5 years ago from Midwest USA

I do understand your challenges, dealing with loss of vision. I too have lost the centeral vision in both my eyes. At the tender age of 43 I was legally blind,

lost my job and found myself going through the whole social security disability nightmare.

Now I write from home and would like to link this hub to one of my blind hubs.

Thank you for sharing your challenges, you are and inspiration to us all. Mike


Guanta profile image

Guanta 5 years ago from New York City Author

Thank you Teddletonmr for sharing your personal story. I'm sorry to hear about your loss of sight. Please do link my hub to yours, I'm more than glad to increase awareness about glaucoma.

The circumstances are never easy, I personally have had to cut back on many of the things I enjoyed, but it's all worth it if I can be found to be an inspiration to you and others. Thank you much, God bless.


KenWu profile image

KenWu 3 years ago from Malaysia

Thanks for sharing your experience. I have read about the glaucoma and it is a very scary eye disorder. Until now no proven medication or procedure can be done.


Woods 23 months ago

A wonderful job. Super helpful inmnafrtioo.

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