Glaucoma represents a group of eye disorders that cause damage to the optic nerve. Glaucoma is a degenerative eye disease and one of the leading causes of blindness in the United States.
Angle-closure glaucoma is a condition in which the iris in the eye shifts and blocks the exit passageway of the fluid in the front compartment of the eye. This fluid blockage causes a rapid build-up of pressure in the eye.
Angle-closure glaucoma is an emergency condition that requires immediate medical treatment to preserve vision.
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The exact cause of open-angle glaucoma is unknown. However, factors that play a role in causing the disease include:
- Narrowing of the drainage angle in the eye—Aging and being farsighted are two causes of this narrowing.
- Being born with narrow angles
- Injury to the eye
Sometimes certain medications can cause sudden angle-closure glaucoma. These include:
- Botulism injections around the eye
- Sulfa-based drugs
- Phenothiazines and monoamine oxidase inhibitors
- Medications to treat Parkinson's disease
Last reviewedJuly 2013by Christopher Cheyer, MD; Brian Randall, MD
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.