Hyderabad Royals Team (Royal Enfield motorcycle club) join in the awareness rally
Screening and early detection can eliminate irreversible blindness
Celebs & Doctors exhort people to be aware of glaucoma and take care of their eyes
Hyderabad, 6th March, 2016: Fashion Designer & Mrs India Shilpa Reddy flagged off the ‘Glaucoma Awareness Walk’ organised by L. V. Prasad Eye Institute (LVPEI) on Sunday at Jubilee Hills. She later joined in the walk along with Hyderabad Royals Team (Royal Enfield motorcycle club), Dr. G. N. Rao, Chair, LVPEI; Dr. G. Chandra Sekhar, Vice Chair, LVPEI; Dr. Sirisha Senthil, Head, Glaucoma Center, LVPEI; Doctors, Patients and public. The Hyderabad Royals Team took out a motorbike rally in support of galucoma awareness on the occasion. The Walk was organised as part of the Glaucoma Awareness Week being held from March 6th – 12th, 2016, to build awareness on the eye disease which is seen as the leading cause of irreversible blindness in India and affects both adults and children. The theme for this year is ‘BIG: BEAT INVISIBLE GLAUCOMA’ and the focus is on early detection and prevention of glaucoma through family screening.
Speaking on the occasion Ms Shilpa Reddy said, Glaucoma is not known to many, even I wasn't aware of this serious eye ailment, my grandmother was afflicted of glaucoma, she lost sight and reached a stage where she couldn't recognise family member, that is pretty depressing condition. Therefore creating awareness about glaucoma is very important, getting eye checked for glaucoma is vital as that's the only way to detect glaucoma early and prevent.
Glaucoma is a disorder associated with increase in the eye pressure, and is characterized by damage to the optic nerve leading to irreversible blindness. Currently, in India, every 8th individual or nearly 40 million aged 40 years or older either has glaucoma or is at risk of developing the disease. 11.2 million Indians suffer from the disease with 1.1 million blind, including children. Glaucoma more commonly affects people beyond the age of 40 years. High myopes, diabetics and those with a positive family history have higher risk of developing glaucoma. Screening family members of patients with glaucoma is mandatory, as this disease can affect siblings and children of patients with glaucoma in up to 10‐20% of cases.
61 million persons worldwide have glaucoma and that is expected to rise to almost 80 million by the year 2020. Blindness from glaucoma is 80% preventable, yet almost 7 million people are blind from glaucoma in the world, and 2/3 of the world's blind and visually impaired are women. Ninety percent of Glaucoma in the country is undetected, mostly due to lack of awareness.
L V Prasad Eye Institute will also organise a Glaucoma Education Forum on March 12 to educate the general public on the harmful effects of prolonged steroid use.
Glaucoma cannot be prevented, but if it is diagnosed and treated early, the disease can be controlled. Loss of vision caused by glaucoma is irreversible and cannot be restored. However, successfully lowering eye pressure can help prevent further visual loss from glaucoma. Most people with glaucoma do not go blind if they follow their treatment plan and have regular eye exams. Dr Sirisha Senthil, Head of Glaucoma Service at LVPEI said, “Most people with glaucoma have no early symptoms or pain from this increased pressure, hence it is important to see your eye doctor regularly so that glaucoma can be diagnosed and treated before long-term visual loss occurs.”