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Glaucoma

Who Gets Glaucoma?

Tuesday, March 27, 2012 - 22:09

Contributing Author: Guy Slowik FRCS

Black people are more likely to develop glaucoma than any other race. No one fully understands why this is so. Black people are also more likely to develop glaucoma at a younger age and will experience more damage to their vision because of it.

  • One out of every 100 Black people age 40 and above has glaucoma. This is also true of Caucasians.
  • By age 80, those numbers jump to 11 out of every 100 for Black people, but only 2 in 100 for Caucasians.
  • Black people between the ages of 45 and 65 are much more likely to go blind from glaucoma than are members of other races.
  • People of Asian descent and other races have figures more in line with Caucasians than with Black people.

Other factors can increase the likelihood of developing glaucoma. The risk is higher if a person has:

  • A family history (glaucoma seems to trace in families)
  • Diabetes
  • Nearsightedness (myopia)
  • A previous eye injury

Some researchers believe there may be a link between glaucoma and high blood pressure, but this has not been proven.

Can Children Get Glaucoma?

While glaucoma is very rare in infants and children, some specific types do show up. So it is important that children be tested, too.

Glaucoma