Glaucoma set to rise as population ages

March 11th, 2010 - 12:34 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, March 11 (IANS) In a bid to spread awareness about glaucoma, an eye disease that is the second leading cause of blindness across the world and is expected to rise as the population ages, eyecare professionals here as elsewhere are observing World Glaucoma Week until March 13.
According to B.Sridhar Rao, president of the Glaucoma Society of India, an NGO that aims to sensitise people about the disease, 12 million Indians suffer from the disease.

“Glaucoma is the second leading cause of blindness worldwide. Glaucoma currently affects approximately 12 million people in India and 65 million people worldwide - numbers that can be expected to increase as the population ages,” Rao said.

“Unfortunately, many people with glaucoma are unaware that they have it until there is a large amount of irreversible vision loss,” he added.

Glaucoma is often nicknamed the “sneak thief of sight” because the loss of vision normally occurs gradually over a long period of time and is often only recognised when the disease is quite advanced.

Glaucoma week, being observed since March 7, aims to make people aware of the disease and emphasises the importance of regular eye checks.

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