Increased pressure of the eye, which is referred to by doctors as ocular hypertension, is a condition that can occur at any time, often without warning signs or symptoms. If ocular hypertension is left untreated, loss of vision referred to as glaucoma may slowly develop, and can lead to permanent damage to the eye as well as blindness. Consider this information derived from the American Academy of Ophthalmology, the American Optometric Association and the National Eye Institute about the causes and risk factors of ocular hypertension.
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Disorders of the eye can be a cause of ocular hypertension, according to the American Academy of Ophthalmology. People who are nearsighted develop ocular hypertension more often than people with normal vision. Blockages or tumours in the ducts that allow fluid to drain from the eye can also increase the pressure inside of the eye.
According to the American Optometric Association, family history is a contributing factor of ocular hypertension. People with a close relative with ocular hypertension or glaucoma may develop ocular hypertension themselves. A family history of myopia or diabetes may also increase the risk of developing ocular hypertension.
According to the American Academy of Ophthalmology, injuries to the eye may be a cause of ocular hypertension. A history of eye injuries, such as trauma to the head as a result of an accident can damage the eye's drainage system and allow fluid pressure to increase. Eye injuries resulting from past eye surgeries may also be a cause of ocular hypertension.
Certain chronic medical conditions can be a cause of ocular hypertension, according to the American Academy of Ophthalmology. People with diabetes are more likely to develop ocular hypertension than people without the condition. Other medical conditions, including abnormally low blood pressure and frequent migraine headaches can also cause ocular hypertension.
According to the National Eye Institute, complications with certain medications and medical procedures may cause an increase of pressure in the eye. Medicines such as corticosteroids can cause a sudden increase in eye pressure, resulting in secondary glaucoma. Increases in ocular pressure can also result from inflammation of the eye caused by eye surgery or the use of contact lenses.
Personal factors may increase the risk of developing ocular hypertension, according to the American Optometric Association. People who are African American are more likely to develop ocular hypertension than Caucasians. People over the age of forty are more likely to develop ocular hypertension than children or younger adults.
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