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Blind students with white canes waiting to cross Congress Avenue, a busy six lane road.

Buphthalmos

DESCRIPTION: Sometimes associated with infantile glaucoma, caused by abnormal development of the angle formed by cornea and iris; Schlemm's Canal is usually collapsed; onset at birth or before age 3 (over 80% of cases are evident by 3 months of age); usually an autosomal recessive trait. Symptoms are excessive tearing, photophobia, increased intraocular pressure, and cupping of the optic disk. The eyes usually appear abnormally large; corneal haze is not uncommon. In untreated cases, blindness occurs early. The earlier the defect appears, the less favorable the prognosis. Long-term visual prognosis is fair. Depending on when treatment is instituted, there may be lowered acuity or restricted visual fields. Must be treated surgically (goniotomy, trabeculotomy, or trabeculectomy).

TREATMENT: Surgical treatment, at the earliest possible time, is essential if vision is to be saved.

IMPLICATION: If visual fields are restricted, Orientation and Mobility instruction is indicated.

 

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