As Lagos joins the rest of the world to mark this year “World Glaucoma Week” with an awareness walk, Commissioner for Health, Prof. Akin Abayomi has advised citizens to present themselves for regular eye check in order prevent irreversible blindness that may result from glaucoma.

Abayomi who gave this advice after an awareness walk to commemorate this year’s World Glaucoma Week urged citizens to go for regular eye check at designated government hospitals and accredited specialists eye centre noting that that early detection is key in the management of the eye condition.

He noted that World Glaucoma week is a global celebration targeted towards creating awareness and sensitizing the populace on the dangers of the eye condition which is referred to as the silent killer of eye sight.

Prof Abayomi stated further that the eye is a very delicate organ in the body that requires proper attention and care. He added that particular attention should be paid to Glaucoma as it is a slow chronic disease that can lead to permanent blindness without giving any sign or symptom.

“Sight is such a precious gift to all human beings and it is something we should pay particular attention to. Glaucoma is one of those eye conditions that just crept against you. You may not even be aware it is happening to you. You may not present with any symptom but as it progresses, it damages the back of your eyes and this may eventually lead to irreversible blindness”. He said

The Commissioner noted that the awareness walk is one of the ways the State government is employing to sensitize residents awareness on dangers of the eye condition as well as encourage regular eye check.

He however urged all residents especially those above the age of 40 years to check the condition of their eyes regularly at least one in a year to ensure that their eyes are in good condition.

Abayomi stated that glaucoma screening and proper eye care can be accessed in any of the nine State-owned general hospitals that have specialists in ophthalmology.

He listed the general hospitals to include; General Hospital Lagos, Gbagada, Ikorodu, Epe, Badagry, Ajeromi, Orile-Agege and Alimosho.

He emphasised further that regular check and early presentation will go along way in preserving vision preventing irreversible blindness that Glaucoma causes.

“So it is important that you are screened at any of our nine general hospitals that have specialists in ophthalmology. Glaucoma is a eye condition that comes up with advancing age just like hypertension and diabetes. It is also important you learn about Glaucoma, read and ask questions about it and more importantly as you pass the second and third decade of your life make sure you go to the hospital and consult your doctor at list one a year” He said

Speaking in thesame vein, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Health, Dr. Olusegun Ogboye explained that Glaucoma is a serious eye condition that can lead to gradual worsening of vision or blindness if left untreated.

“The visual damage caused by Glaucoma is mostly irreversible, and this has led to the eye condition being described as the “thief of sight”, so early detection is essential to limiting visual impairment and preventing the progression towards complete blindness,” he noted

Ogboye listed family history of glaucoma, age and eye injury as factors that can predispose people to glaucoma, saying if one has a family history of glaucoma, the person may likely have it.