Deviating corneal thickness can be a cause of Glaucoma
The relationship between corneal thickness and the development of glaucoma is an important aspect of glaucoma risk assessment.
A brief description of the cornea
The cornea is the clear, domed structure at the front of the eye that acts as the first lens for light entering the eye.
The thickness of the cornea can vary in different people, and these variations can affect the risk of developing glaucoma.
Two cases can be distinguished.
Thinner cornea as a possible cause of Glaucoma
People with a thinner cornea may be at increased risk of glaucoma. When the cornea is thinner, the intraocular pressure created by the fluid in the eye can put more stress on the corneal tissue than when the cornea is thicker.
This can lead to an incorrect measurement of intraocular pressure if the ophthalmologist uses the usual method that takes corneal thickness into account.
However, a low measured intraocular pressure could incorrectly lead to an underestimation of the true risk of glaucoma, as the true pressure could be higher.
On the other hand, people with a thicker cornea may have an overestimation of the intraocular pressure if the traditional measurement method is used.
This means that the measured pressure is higher than the actual intraocular pressure. As a result, the risk of developing glaucoma in people with a thicker cornea could possibly be estimated to be higher than it actually is.
Corneal thickness must be included in diagnosis and treatment
Knowledge of corneal thickness is also important in monitoring glaucoma patients. Once glaucoma has been diagnosed, corneal thickness can play a role in assessing the progression of the disease and can be helpful in deciding on the optimal treatment strategy.