I Have Glaucoma

One of the most important contributions you can make to protect your vision is to take your medication as prescribed and monitor your glaucoma by attending scheduled review appointments.  As glaucoma treatment can become ineffective over time, ongoing testing is crucial to best protect your vision.

I have just been diagnosed with glaucoma, what now?

If you or a loved one has  been diagnosed with glaucoma you might be feeling overwhelmed and concerned for the future. Glaucoma Australia is here to provide you with the information you need so you can learn how to manage this disease and take back control.

If a diagnosis of glaucoma has been made, it is critical that you have your intraocular pressure, eye health and visual fields periodically assessed. Your ophthalmologist and optometrist may formulate a “shared care” treatment plan for your glaucoma. In this situation, you will be asked to divide your follow-up visits between the optometrist and ophthalmologist. This is done to provide you with the best care possible – shared care plans ensure that the glaucoma is sufficiently monitored and well-controlled. Because glaucoma assessment often involves computerised tests, a cumulative history of results on a specific machine also means progression can be readily detected in a timely fashion. 

It is important to adhere to the shared care treatment plan outlined for you. If there are difficulties with this then you should speak to your optometrist or ophthalmologist so that the treatment plan can be revised accordingly. Similarly, your optometrist may ask you to return to see your ophthalmologist earlier than scheduled if they believe your glaucoma treatment needs to be changed.


Find an eye health professional

Eye Drops: What you should know


Living with glaucoma

Facts and FAQs

If you have more questions about the steps following a glaucoma diagnosis contact Glaucoma Australia on 02 9411 7722 or email us.

Help save your family’s sight

If you have been diagnosed with glaucoma, it is important to alert your family members to their increased risk. Early detection and appropriate treatment can be the difference between them being sighted and going blind. Let your family members know they are at increased risk, and encourage them to have regular optic nerve checks.

Glaucoma runs in families - have the conversation

Right now in Australia, around 300,000 people have glaucoma, a potentially blinding eye disease. Alarmingly, only 50% of them know it. The following points may be useful in advising direct family members of their increased risk.

  • “Because I have glaucoma, as my direct relative you have a 1 in 4 chance of developing glaucoma as well.”
  • “I urge you to have an optic nerve check now! Regular eye checks are especially important for people who have relatives with glaucoma.”
  • “Visit an eye-care professional for a comprehensive eye examination including an optic nerve check and ask when you should return for your next appointment.”
  • “Please advise other family members to do the same”

Encourage your family members to learn more by directing them to the Glaucoma Australia website.

For further queries, please encourage them to contact Glaucoma Australia at 02 9411 7722 or email us


Things to tell your doctor

  1. What other medications you are taking or have taken;
  2. If you suffer other health conditions e.g. asthma, breathing problems;
  3. If you experience any side effects from your glaucoma medication;
  4. Early on – if not on your first visit – advise your eye practitioner if you are aware of a family member who has or had glaucoma

Things you should know

  1. What type of glaucoma do you have? There are many glaucomas. Once you know, record the information in a safe place. Ask your doctor to write it down for you. 
  2. Have you lost any vision?
  3. What do your visual field test results look like?
  4. Has any further damage occurred since your last field or imaging test?
  5. How, and when, should you take your glaucoma drops? 
  6. What should you look out for when taking glaucoma medications – what could be the side effects?
  7. Does it matter if you missed taking a drop?
  8. Are there instances when you should stop taking your glaucoma medication?
  9. Will your other medicines interact with your eye drops? We recommend that you always take a list of your other medications and/or herbal products that you are taking to both your GP and eye health professional
  10. If you believe you will have difficulty instilling your drops due to such things as shaky hands, stiff neck, poor eyesight or any other condition that could affect proper instillation, contact Glaucoma Australia to discuss if an eye drop instillation applicator may help. Please note that not all drops have an applicator available.

Glaucoma Australia has been educating Australians about glaucoma for almost 30 years – our Mission is to Eliminate Glaucoma Blindness. Help us to help your family.