Glaucoma support group launches

PEOPLE in Angus suffering from glaucoma are being urged to attend a new support group which launches today (Friday).

The Tayside Glaucoma Patient Support Group will be held in the Demonstration Room between wards 24 and 25, at Ninewells Hospital, from 3 until 5 p.m.

It has been organised by the Glaucoma Team at Ninewells in partnership with the International Glaucoma Association.

It will give patients an opportunity to share experiences, ask questions about their condition and treatment, and listen to presentations on the topic.

There are currently believed to be approximately 4,000 people in Tayside who suffer from glaucoma, and of these around half are undiagnosed.

Glaucoma initially causes loss of peripheral vision, and people affected are therefore often unaware of it before suffering irreparable damage.

It affects approximately one in 50 people over the age of 40 and is a leading cause of preventable blindness in the UK.

Chief executive of the International Glaucoma Association (IGA) David Wright said: “Everyone over the age of 40 should have a regular routine eye test at least once every two years to be sure that there is nothing wrong or, if there is a problem, to have it detected at a stage when treatment is most effective.

“For those who are diagnosed with glaucoma, support groups can be invaluable because a good understanding of the condition and good compliance with the prescribed treatments lead to much better long term outcomes. ”