Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC) announced an initiative to provide free screening for glaucoma, as part of the celebration of World Glaucoma Week from 11 to 17 March.
Glaucoma Specialist at HMC's Ophthalmology Department Dr. Zakia Mohamed Al Ansari said that the early detection of glaucoma is one of the main factors that help to reduce the progression of the disease and the deterioration of visual strength.
Al Ansari explained in a press conference on Tuesday that HMC's Ophthalmology Department provide treatment to more than 175 glaucoma patients per month, as this disease is one of the main causes of eyesight weakness and blindness in Qatar.
Dr. Zakia pointed out that the risk factors that increase the chances of infection of the glaucoma include exceeding the age of 40 years, the presence of the disease in the history of the family, diabetes, high pressure of the eye or eyeball, near-sightedness, far-sightedness and problems in the blood circulation of women in addition to some other health problems that affect the entire body.
She warned that glaucoma is a disease that causes progressive damage to the optic nerve, which is the responsible part of the eye that transfers images from the retina to the brain, affecting first the peripheral vision i.e. the ability to see things without focusing directly on them, and then spread to affect the central vision and therefore requires the maintenance of vision, continuous treatment throughout life, especially that neglect of treatment may lead to total blindness.
Dr. Zakia Al Ansari called for regular screening for the early detection of glaucoma, as in most cases, the person does not realize that he is infected with the disease, causing irreparable damage.
She revealed that HMC is conducting a three-year survey of all families of patients with glaucoma to identify a number of people who develop the disease through inheritance to detect the disease early, while the early eye screening program targets schoolchildren and newborns to ensure they do not have glaucoma or other eye problems.
Glaucoma is one of the leading causes of blindness among people over the age of 60 years, but it is possible to avoid glaucoma patient blindness by providing diagnosed and early treatment, through regular diagnosis and appropriate treatment where a periodic check is recommended once a year or once every two years after reaching the age of 35 years.
HMC provides a free glaucoma screening and holds public awareness sessions and events as part of the World Glaucoma Week, where staff from HMC's Ophthalmology Department are present to provide free and public awareness about the disease in one of the shopping malls. (QNA)
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