Glaucoma Treatment in Great Falls

Glaucoma Treatment in Great Falls

Don’t Let Glaucoma Rob You of Your Sight

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What Is Glaucoma?

Glaucoma is one of the leading causes of blindness.

It's caused by fluid build-up and increased pressure within the eye that damages the optic nerve that progressively worsens your vision. This disease can cause severe, irreversible vision loss if left untreated.

In many cases, appropriate control and treatment can help prevent further damage to the eyes and protect your vision. Great Falls Eyecare offers several treatments to help address glaucoma. Learn more about the treatments we provide and contact us to schedule an appointment.

Glaucoma diagnosis


The 2 Main Types of Glaucoma

grandfather wearing glasses holding his granddaughter

  • Open-angle glaucoma: the most common type. It is a lifelong condition that accounts for at least 90% of all glaucoma cases.
  • Angle-closure glaucoma: a rare form of the disease which requires immediate medical attention. It occurs when the angle is closed in many or most areas between the iris and cornea, which reduces fluid drainage and increases eye pressure.

Glaucoma: The Sneaky Thief of Sight

There is a reason glaucoma is called “the sneaky thief of sight”--half the people with glaucoma don’t even know they have it! Meaning, they may not have symptoms in the early stages.

At Great Falls Eyecare, we diagnose and help preserve your vision with cutting-edge glaucoma treatments that can slow the progression of the disease.

If you have a family history of glaucoma or have been diagnosed with glaucoma, contact us today.

optometrist in Great Falls


What are the Signs of Glaucoma?

glaucoma signs

As mentioned earlier, glaucoma usually shows no symptoms in its early stages. When signs do manifest, it's usually loss of tunnel vision or peripheral vision. Unfortunately, by the time vision loss has occurred, it cannot be reversed.

That said, the less common angle-closure glaucoma does show a sudden onset of symptoms, including:

  • Extreme eye pain
  • Eye redness
  • Blurred vision
  • Nausea

If you experience any of these symptoms, seek prompt diagnosis and treatment by contacting Great Falls Eyecare in Great Falls or visiting your nearest emergency room.


Who's at Risk for Glaucoma?

  • Age 40 +

    The prevalence of glaucoma increases with age, with most glaucoma patients aged 40 and up. That said, there is a much rarer form of this disease (congenital glaucoma) that affects infants.

  • Family History & Ethnicity

    Your risk for developing glaucoma is higher if you have a family history of the disease. Those of African American, Hispanic, Asian and Native American, and Indigenous Canadian descent have a higher risk of developing this disease.

  • Other Conditions

    High myopia, hypertension and diabetes can increase the risk of developing glaucoma.

  • Eye Injury or Trauma

    An eye injury, trauma or eye surgery can increase the likelihood of developing glaucoma.


Common Glaucoma Treatments

There is currently no cure for glaucoma. However, several treatments are available to prevent the progression of this sight-robbing condition. With the right care, you have a higher chance of managing your glaucoma and preserving your vision.

Common treatments include:

Eye Drops

Your optometrist will prescribe eye drops to help regulate pressure inside the eye by decreasing fluid production and/or improving drainage.

Laser Surgery

If eye drops aren’t doing enough to reduce intraocular pressure or intraocular temperature in open-angle glaucoma, laser surgery may be an option. Selective laser trabeculoplasty (SLT) opens up the drainage system in the eye to reduce pressure.

SLT is successful in 80% of cases and can reduce eye pressure by 20%.

Other Surgeries

If a laser procedure or eye drops do not lower eye pressure to the desired level, your eye doctor may recommend one of the following surgeries:

  • Incision Surgery
  • Minimally invasive glaucoma surgery (MIGS)
  • Glaucoma Drainage Implants

Preserve Your Vision For Longer

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Glaucoma Testing Treatment FAQs

How does an eye doctor diagnose glaucoma?

Since glaucoma has no side effects early on, it is essential for people with a family history of risk factors for glaucoma to get tested. The following tests diagnose glaucoma:

  • Tonometry: measures the pressure inside the eye (intraocular pressure or IOP)
  • Ophthalmoscopy (dilated eye exam): examines the shape and color of the optic nerve
  • Perimetry: measures your field of vision
  • Gonioscopy: checks the angle where the iris meets the cornea
  • Pachymetry: determines the thickness of the cornea to better evaluate eye pressure.
What foods should you avoid if you have glaucoma?

The following are the foods every glaucoma patient should consider avoiding immediately. It should help keep your optic nerve healthy and minimize eye pressure.

  • Caffeine - certain studies show that caffeine contributes to increased intraocular pressure.
  • Saturated fats - a diet high in saturated fats can lead to weight gain, which not only increases intraocular pressure but also cholesterol levels.
  • Trans fats - try to limit your consumption of trans fats because they can also raise cholesterol levels
  • Salt - make sure to consume salt sparingly, as increased blood pressure can indirectly lead to intraocular pressure.
What percentage of glaucoma patients go blind?

About 60% of patients diagnosed with glaucoma will eventually lose some vision.

However, the rate of legal blindness among glaucoma patients is 5%. Getting effective treatment early on will greatly increase your ability to preserve and maximize your vision.

Patient Reviews
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105 Reviews
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- Jun. 14, 2024
Dr. Runke is thorough with a gentle nature symbiotically merging historical experiences with predict... ive analytics.
- Mar. 26, 2024
Dr. Runke provided a thorough eye exam as always. Staff are friendly and helpful. I highly recommend... Dr. Runke and Great Falls Eyecare!
- Feb. 21, 2024
My wife and I have been at this Great Falls eye are for over 20 years. Wonderful staff, they are fri... endly and knowledgeable. This eye care is very clean and has a variety of glasses to choose, I would recommend to anyone who needs an eye care.
- Feb. 06, 2024
I have received top quality eye care at Great Falls Eyecare for over 10 years now! The doctors are ... expert and professional, listen to you and very patiently answer your questions. I highly recommend this practice!
- Feb. 03, 2024
Been coming here since we moved to Great Falls in the ‘90’s. Drs Runke and Anderson are thorough... and take the time to listen to your concerns. They also explain why they do the various tests they perform. I’ve even stayed with them and paid out of pocket when my employer changed its insurance and no longer included this practice. Highly recommend!
- Jan. 06, 2024
Thank you Dr. Runke for great service I received from you and staff.
- Jan. 05, 2024
Great staff and the doctors are friendly and informative. If you have questions they answer them unt... il you have no more and they give it to you straight.
- Dec. 29, 2023
Incredibly friendly and welcoming staff - Dr. Runke even sent a personalized thank you card. Incredi... bly thoughtful and great service.
- Dec. 20, 2023
I am very happy to have landed an appointment with Dr. Runke. All testing and results were thoroughl... y explained.
- Dec. 03, 2023
Professional, courageous and great service
- Oct. 25, 2023
I have been seeing Dr. Runke for several years. I really enjoy working with the whole team at Great ... Falls Eyecare. Dr. Runke has so much expertise, I feel privileged to have her taking care of my eyes.
- Oct. 24, 2023
Dr. Runke was attentive and competent. She conducted a thorough exam and provided new eyeglass presc... riptions for which the glasses are being made .i recommend Great falls highly.
- Oct. 21, 2023
Dr. Runke is a wonderful optometrist who takes the time to really understand your needs. Up todate t... ecnology and a comprehensive exam. She is far superior to my previous optometrist. The staff is also lovely - warm and professional. I highly recommend this practice.
- Oct. 21, 2023
I had a great experience with the team at Great Falls Eye Care. From the moment I walked in to the m... oment I left, everyone was professional, kind, and helpful. I can't wait to get my new glasses, and I'll definitely be a repeat customer.
- Oct. 18, 2023
Perfection.
- Oct. 11, 2023
Wonderful eye care practice! Thorough exams, prescribed a brilliant prescription so that I can see f... ar and read without readers. So thankful and grateful!
- Sep. 23, 2023
Excellent service and staff! Doctors are very patient explaining you in detail what is going on and... any question you have . Thank you very much Great Falls Eye Center!
- Aug. 20, 2023
Dr. Anderson, Jodi, and the receptionists were all great in every aspect! Best experience I've had a... t an optometrist.
- Jul. 31, 2023
We have been patients of Dr. Runke for more than 20 years. After a recent move to Miami, we still co... me back to see her. And it's worth it.
- Jul. 25, 2023
Dr. Runke and all staff are very professional, knowledgeable, and kind hearted - the latter is not s... omething one usually experiences in a business but you do at Great Falls Eyecare!

View All 105 Reviews

Glaucoma Diagnosis & Treatment in Great Falls

Our optometry practice in Great Falls

Photograph of Lisa  Anderson
Hours
  • Monday 9:00 am - 5:30 pm
  • Tuesday 9:00 am - 6:00 pm
  • Wednesday 9:00 am - 4:00 pm
  • Thursday 9:00 am - 6:00 pm
  • Friday 9:00 am - 5:30 pm
  • Saturday Please call office for hours.
  • Sunday Closed
Insurance Plans
  • Medicare Part B
  • United Healthcare
  • VSP

glaucoma surgery

Don’t lose sight of your future.

With early detection and treatment, glaucoma can be controlled.

Schedule Eye Exam