Recognizing Glaucoma In Children

By admin
April 22, 2015

Though its typically associated with older adults, glaucoma can occur at any age, including childhood. Glaucoma does not refer to a single condition, but rather a group of diseases characterized by a high amount of pressure in the eye. Pediatric glaucoma often presents a different set of symptoms compared to glaucoma in adults.


Glaucoma can be difficult to recognize in children, especially in infants and toddlers who cannot speak and fully convey how they feel. However, there are some tell-tale signs and symptoms of childhood glaucoma that parents may notice. They include:

  • Sensitivity to light (squinting, closing one or both eyes when exposed to light)
  • Excessive tearing
  • Enlarged, cloudy cornea
  • One eye appears larger than the other
  • Loss of appetite
  • Irritability
  • Fussiness
  • General pain/discomfort

Pediatric glaucoma is usually categorized based on the age of the patient when the condition first occurred. For example, congenital glaucoma is present at birth, while infantile glaucoma usually develops before age two. Juvenile glaucoma occurs in children older than three.

Diagnosing Pediatric Glaucoma

Prompt diagnosis and treatment is very important in young glaucoma patients, helping to improve and preserve their vision. Infants and children experiencing one or more symptoms of glaucoma should undergo a complete, comprehensive eye examination. Other diagnostic tools for glaucoma may include a traditional eye chart test, pupil dilation, peripheral vision measurement, and measurement of fluid in the eye.

Each of these tests will help the doctor to diagnose glaucoma and come up with a personalized treatment plan to treat your child's glaucoma as soon as possible. Contact Westchester Eye Associates to schedule an exam.



Pediatric Ophthalmology


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