Glaucoma is called the “sneak thief of sight” because it is a silent illness and most people don’t notice they have a problem until vision diminishes substantially or blindness occurs.
Conservative estimates put the proportion of people aged 40 years and above with glaucoma at between 4% in Central, East and Southern Africa to more than 8% in some parts of West Africa.
This means that in Cameroon, there would be more than 150,000 people living with glaucoma, more that 80% of them unaware of it. In addition, there would be at least 8,000 new glaucoma cases, largely undiagnosed, in Cameroon each year.
January is glaucoma awareness month, so know your risks. The article “Knowing Your Risks Can Stop the Sneak Thief of Sight” and the following video provide additional information on glaucoma.
If you are 40 years or above, make sure you see your ophthalmologist for a comprehensive eye exam, especially if there is a family history of glaucoma.