Glaucoma Specialist

Diana Zabarko, OD -  - Optometrist

Avant Garde Vision Center

Diana Zabarko, OD

Optometrist located in Wayne, NJ

Glaucoma is an eye disease that may not present any symptoms until your eyes are already permanently damaged, and it can even lead to total blindness. Diana Zabarko, OD, at Avant Garde Vision Center in Wayne, New Jersey, uses the latest technology to test you for glaucoma. Call the office or use the online scheduling tool to book an appointment today to ensure that your eyes are healthy.

Glaucoma Q & A

What is glaucoma?

Glaucoma is an eye disease that causes loss of your peripheral, or side vision. It usually affects both eyes, and if left untreated, it can lead to total blindness.

What causes glaucoma?

Glaucoma results from pressure caused by abnormal fluid buildup in your eye. The fluid, called the aqueous humor, gets blocked and cannot flow out of your eye as it’s supposed to do. This pressure damages the optic nerve, which works together with your brain to enable you to see.

People with a family history of glaucoma are at higher risk for developing it, as are those of certain descent. You may be at higher risk if you’re:

  • African-American
  • Irish, Russian
  • Japanese
  • Hispanic
  • Inuit
  • Scandinavian

Most of the time, glaucoma affects adults, but on occasion, doctors see children with glaucoma. Glaucoma may result infrequently from other conditions, including eye infections, injuries, or blocked blood vessels.

What are the symptoms of glaucoma?

Glaucoma is a stealth disease because symptoms are not readily apparent in its early stages. By the time vision is affected, the disease has already progressed.

Symptoms may include:

  • Halos around lights
  • Blurred vision
  • Redness
  • Tunnel vision
  • Eye pain

All adults, especially those over 40, should have an eye exam every two years. You may need a yearly exam if you have a family history of glaucoma or if you have health problems, such as diabetes, which place you at greater risk of other serious eye conditions.

What is the process for diagnosing glaucoma?

Dr. Zabarko uses a visual field test to diagnose glaucoma. You sit in front of a machine that’s actually a computer, and the technician positions you so that your head doesn’t move during the test.

With one eye covered, you stare straight ahead at a bright yellow light. During the test, which lasts up to 10 minutes, lights flash at regular intervals off center, and you press a button every time you see a flash of light. Then you repeat the test with the other eye.

Dr. Zabarko also performs additional tests using a microscope and an ophthalmoscope that shows a 3D cross-section of all of the parts of your eye to ensure that there are no signs of other diseases.

What are the types of glaucoma?

Dr. Zabarko and his team can diagnose the following conditions:

    • Narrow arrow glaucoma: where the iris is pushed or pulled forward
    • Angle-closure glaucoma: rapid increase of pressure

  • Acute glaucoma: where the drainage angle becomes blocked
  • Low eye pressure (hypotony): distortions of the retina, lens, and cornea
  • High eye pressure (ocular hypertension): an imbalance in the production of fluids

Dr. Zabarko can diagnose your condition and can help you find a doctor who is the perfect fit for the treatment you need. It’s important to seek medical treatment as soon as possible for all of these conditions.

What is normal eye pressure?

Normal eye pressure ranges from 12 mm Hg to 22 mm Hg. Lower eye pressure is usually when it’s lower than 6 mm Hg. This causes distortions of the retina, lens, and cornea which affect your vision. High eye pressure is any pressure above 22 mm Hg. It’s caused by an imbalance of fluids in the eye that can increase the chances of developing glaucoma.

Every eye is different so the ranges might fluctuate person to person. Dr. Zabarko can help diagnose and monitor your pressure to keep you healthy.

What happens if I have glaucoma?

If Dr. Zabarko sees signs of glaucoma, she refers you to a trusted ophthalmologist. If your glaucoma is in an early stage, prescription eye drops or an oral medication improve fluid drainage from your eye.

In more severe cases, an eye surgeon can perform laser surgery or microsurgery. Dr. Zabarko can help you find an expert ophthalmologist for your glaucoma treatment.