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Glaucoma FAQs (cont.)

Can Glaucoma Be Prevented?

Most types of glaucoma cannot be prevented. Vitamins and other nutritional supplements do not play a role in the prevention of glaucoma. While vision loss due to glaucomatous optic nerve damage cannot be recovered, with appropriate treatment, further vision loss can usually be prevented.

Those types of secondary glaucoma resulting from eye injuries or certain diseases, such as diabetes and uncontrolled hypertension (high blood pressure), may be preventable or even avoidable with certain measures, such as protective eyewear to avoid eye injuries and proper management of diabetes and uncontrolled hypertension.

One type of glaucoma, acute angle-closure glaucoma, can sometimes be prevented if a laser procedure is performed prior to its onset. To determine if a person is at risk for acute angle-closure glaucoma, they should see an ophthalmologist (a medical doctor who specializes in eye care and surgery) for an eye examination.

Medically reviewed by William Baer, MD; Board Certified Ophthalmology


"Primary Angle Closure (Preferred Practice Pattern)." American Academy of Ophthalmology. 2005.

"Primary Open-Angle Glaucoma, Limited Revision (Preferred Practice Pattern)." American Academy of Ophthalmology. 2005.

"Primary Open-Angle Glaucoma Suspect (Preferred Practice Pattern)." American Academy of Ophthalmology. Oct. 2010.

Gordon, M. O., et al. "The Ocular Hypertension Treatment Study: baseline factors that predict the onset of primary open-angle glaucoma." Archives of Ophthalmology 120.6 (2002): 714-720.

Lichter, P. R., et al. "Interim clinical outcomes in the Collaborative Initial Glaucoma Treatment Study comparing initial treatment randomized to medications or surgery." Ophthalmology 108.11 (2001): 1943-1953.

Previous contributing editors: Richard W Allinson, MD, Associate Professor, Division of Ophthalmology, Texas A&M University Health Science Center, Associate Professor, Department of Surgery, Scott and White Clinic; Francisco Talavera, PharmD, PhD, Senior Pharmacy Editor, eMedicine; Robert H Graham, MD, Ophthalmologist, Robert H Graham, MD, PC; Affiliated With Department of Ophthalmology, Mayo Clinic, Scottsdale, Arizona and Carl T Hayden VA Medical Center, Phoenix, Arizona.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 3/16/2015

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