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What types of allergy medication can be taken if you have glaucoma?

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Glaucoma is an eye condition caused in part by elevated intraocular pressure, or IOP, affecting up to 4 million Americans. Even though glaucoma can eventually cause blindness, only half of persons with glaucoma are aware that they have the condition. There are two categories of adult glaucoma, wide or open angle glaucoma and narrow angle or angle closure glaucoma. Open angle glaucoma is a chronic condition where the ducts allowing fluid to flow out of the eye are normal size but have become clogged over time. Angle closure glaucoma is a physiological problem where the duct is too small and can suddenly become blocked by dilation of the eye. Both types are susceptible to complications created by different categories of allergy medications including decongestants, antihistamines and corticosteroids.
Decongestants
Decongestants such as pseudoephedrine, phenylephrine and oxymetazoline are used in allergy medications for their vasoconstrictive properties in oral formulations as well as nasal sprays and eyedrops available by prescription and over the counter. Decongestants work by constricting swollen blood vessels in the nasal airways, allowing air to flow through and in the eyes, leading to decreased redness and irritation. In addition to the vasoconstrictive properties, they also cause dilation of the pupils, which can cause a sudden onset of angle closure glaucoma because the drainage ducts of the eye have become blocked causing a sudden increase in IOP. Decongestants may also increase the chance of developing glaucoma if combined with other medications that cause pupil dilation. Persons with open angle glaucoma are generally not affected by decongestants.
Antihistamines
Antihistamines such as diphenhydramine and loratadine along with many others, work to block the effects of histamine released by the body in response to exposure to an allergen. Antihistamines are used mostly in oral formulations but also in some allergy eyedrops available both over the counter and by prescription. They are also known to have an "anticholinergic" effect which means that they dry mucous membranes, prevent body secretions and allow dilation of the pupils. Though the effect of antihistamines on the pupils is milder than that of decongestants, it is still possibly a contributor to the onset of angle closure glaucoma. Open angle glaucoma is generally not affected by the use of antihistamines.
Corticosteroids
Corticosteroids such as flunisolide and mometasone are used topically for the treatment of nasal and eye allergies and as inhalants for the treatment of more serious breathing conditions such as asthma and reactive airway disease, which are complications of allergies. Use of corticosteroids for more than three months has been shown to raise IOP, particularly in persons with open angle glaucoma.
Eye drops, lazor operation and some special care.You should not have coffee or alcohol,be sure to have vitamins such as B, C and E

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Anonymous
4 years ago
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Eye drops, lazor operation and some special care.You should not have coffee or alcohol,be sure to have vitamins such as B, C and E
Submitted by:
Anonymous
4 years ago

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