Glaucoma support meeting in Buxton for patients and carers on 31 March

A free information and support event for people affected by eye disease glaucoma, is being held in Buxton on Friday 31 March – all welcome.

The International Glaucoma Association will be joining forces with glaucoma experts from Derbyshire Community Health Services NHS Foundation Trust for the support meeting in Buxton Methodist Church Hall, Chapel Street, SK17 6HX from 1.30pm until 3-30pm.

Buxton-based glaucoma nurse Norma Ayres said: “Glaucoma is a leading cause of preventable blindness and we are keen to raise further awareness to help people most at risk and to offer support to those affected.”

The International Glaucoma Association (IGA) is a charity which funds research to help understand this complex condition where the optic nerve in the eye is damaged.

Glaucoma affects 1-2% of people in their 40s, and for people over 80 this may be as high as 15%. People are not usually aware they have this condition in the early stages. It is recommended that people over 40 have eye tests with an optician every two years. These are free if a family member has glaucoma.

One of the current research projects supported by the IGA is to compare mitochondrial DNA damage in cells from samples of blood and eye tissue of people with glaucoma to assess if the eye tissue is more vulnerable to damage. This may lead to identifying patients whose optic nerve is more susceptible to disease and treating them earlier and more appropriately.

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The Glaucoma Research Foundation suggests that immediate family members of people with the most common type of glaucoma, Primary Open Angle Glaucoma, are four to nine times at higher risk of developing glaucoma than the rest of the population.

Glaucoma is mainly painless, and sight loss is gradual, usually affecting peripheral vision first, which means it often goes unnoticed. Opticians can detect signs of glaucoma during sight tests and eye examinations.

At the glaucoma support meeting Conrad Yuen, a consultant ophthalmologist from Stepping Hill Hospital, will explain different aspects of glaucoma and how it is treated. He will also answer questions.

David Harris from the International Glaucoma Association (IGA) will talk about the work of the IGA and its research programmes.

For more information contact Norma Ayres, specialist glaucoma nurse at Cavendish Hospital, Buxton, on 01298 212850.

ENDS

NOTES TO EDITORS:

  • Derbyshire Community Health Services NHS Foundation Trust cares for patients across a wide range of services, delivered from 133 sites including 11 community hospitals and 30 health centres across Derbyshire, with nearly 1.5 million patient contacts each year.
  • The Trust employs approximately 4,500 staff, making it one of the largest providers of specialist community health services in the country, serving a patient population of 1.1 million.
  • Derbyshire Community Health Services NHS Foundation Trust’s

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MEDIA CONTACT: Rebecca Beedie, tel 07717 714239 or email: r.beedie@nhs.net or Rob Steel, tel 07527 420221 or email: robertsteel1@nhs.net

Ref No: DCHS/RB/539