Acute Angle-Closure Glaucoma


Acute angle-closure glaucoma is a dramatic disorder of sudden onset and represents a true ophthalmic emergency. If not properly diagnosed and treated, progressive, permanent ocular damage occurs in a matter of hours to days. The history is characterized by the quite sudden onset of pain, redness of the eye, and blurred vision. The pain is usually severe and generally centered over the brow. Nausea, vomiting, and profuse sweating are commonly associated symptoms which may lead to improper diagnosis and treatment in an emergency room setting.

Figure: Oblique flashlight illumination showing shallow anterior chamber, corneal edema and mid-dilated pupil. Gonioscopic appearance (above) shows closed angle without any visible angle structures. Note how the corneal beam tapers towards the Schwalbe's line.