Sunday 6th November 2022 · Mike Smith
Source: Press Release
Willem Koopmans from the Netherlands has been living in Javea for six years. In October, he noticed that his eye sight was getting worse and booked an eye test with Specsavers Ópticas in Javea. He had been experiencing headaches, but didn’t think it was anything serious. So, he was very surprised when optometrist Cecilia Navarro told him that they had found signs of glaucoma during the eye test and gave him an urgent referral to Juan Carlos private hospital.
“I had noticed some changes to my vision and was getting some headaches, but thought I just needed to get new glasses. Although I do have a family history of glaucoma, I wasn’t really aware of what it could do to your vision and hadn’t thought I could be suffering from it with so few symptoms. Of course, I wasn’t happy to be told that I could have glaucoma, but I was very grateful to have the signs of the disease found before it did too much damage and be referred to a specialist for diagnosis and treatment.”
“I am now on drops to control the condition, my headaches have gone, and my eye sight is much better. Although it’s not 100%, at least I know that the glaucoma won’t get any worse while I take the drops. I’d like to thank the team at Specsavers Ópticas in Javea and remind everyone to get their eyes tested on a regular basis. It doesn’t hurt – only takes around 25 minutes and could save your sight.”
A recent survey by Specsavers in the UK revealed that Mr Koopmans is not alone in being unaware of glaucoma and its potential impact on vision. Almost half of those surveyed (48%) said they didn’t know what it was, 42% of respondents don’t worry about it because they think ‘it’s rare’ while 40% wrongly believe it can be ‘cured’.
Alarmingly, a fifth of the population (21%) still don’t know how often they should visit their optician for a routine check-up and the same percentage either can’t remember their last eye examination, or have never had one. This is leaving them at risk of developing serious eye health complications and potentially losing their sight.
Optometrist and director of Specsavers Ópticas in Javea Cecilia Navarro says, “I want to raise awareness about glaucoma and how damaging it can be to sight. Unfortunately, as we can see from this case, the condition has very few symptoms, even when the damage to the eye is quite extensive, so eye tests to spot the condition early are essential.“
“When we gave Mr Koopmans an eye test, we found very high intraocular pressure. His pressure was over 35mmHg in the left eye and over 25mmHg in the right, whereas after treatment it has dropped to 20 and 17 respectively. Unfortunately, I could also see a deep excavation of the optic nerve, particularly in the left eye and during the test it was clear that there had been damage to his peripheral vision.“
“Thankfully now that he is on treatment this will not get any worse and overall, his vision remains good. However, he would have lost a lot more vision if he hadn’t had his eyes tested and urgently sought medical attention.”
“Vision loss from glaucoma is irreversible, which is why we encourage people to have their eyes tested every two years and come in as soon as they notice changes to their vision or headaches. Early diagnosis is key to saving sight!”
Specsavers Ópticas in Javea is located just off the Carretera Cabo la Nao-Pla, near Servicolor, on Avenida Del Pla 125, Edificio Caribe, Local 6. There are six stores on the Costa Blanca, in Javea, Calpe, Benidorm, Torrevieja, Guardamar and La Zenia. Visit www.specsavers.es to find your nearest store and book a free eye test.