National Glaucoma Research

What is Secondary Glaucoma?

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Secondary glaucoma can be open-angle or closed-angle and is the result of some other medical condition in the eye or the body. Examples of secondary glaucoma include:

  • Pigmentary glaucoma occurs when pigment granules from the iris flake off into the eye fluid (aqueous humor) and clog the eye's drainage system (trabecular meshwork).

  • Pseudoexfoliation syndrome occurs when white material appears to flake off the lens of the eye and block normal flow of the aqueous humor.

  • Neovascular glaucoma occurs when abnormal blood vessel growth blocks the eye's fluid drainage channels and leads to increased eye pressure. This abnormal growth can be caused by:
    • Low blood supply to the eye due to diabetes
    • Insufficient blood flow to the head because of blocked neck arteries
    • Blood vessel blockage in the back of the eye
  • Iridocorneal Endothelial Syndrome (ICE) has a number of features, including cells that break off from the cornea, which block the drainage channels in the eye and lead to increased eye pressure. Scars may also connect the iris to the cornea.

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