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Glaucoma and irritable bowel syndrome

Created date

June 13th, 2018

Health and wellness experts practice exclusively at Erickson Living communities all over the U.S. Dr. Orlic received his bachelor’s degree from Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Pa., and his medical degree from New York Medical College in Valhalla, N.Y. He completed his internship and residency in internal medicine at North Shore University Hospital in Manhasset, N.Y. Orlic is board-certified in internal medicine. He joined Cedar Crest in September 2015.

Q: What causes glaucoma?

A: Glaucoma is in fact a group of diseases, any of which may result in vision loss. Generally, the disease process involves fluid building up in the eye, which causes increased pressure and damage to the optic nerve. There are several risk factors for developing glaucoma. These include having a family history of the disease, being over age 45, having diabetes, taking steroids, a decrease in the cornea’s thickness and rigidity, injury to the eye, and previous elevated intraocular pressure. Glaucoma rarely has symptoms, so all seniors should be screened every year for the disease as part of a comprehensive eye examination.

Q: I have irritable bowel syndrome and usually experience gas and frequent bowel movements. But for the last few weeks I have had a burning sensation in my throat—could that be another symptom? 

A: Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) can cause abdominal cramping, bloating, and a change in bowel habits, including frequency, constipation, diarrhea, or a combination of all of these. IBS is a disease of the large intestine, however, so it may not be responsible for symptoms that involve your upper gastrointestinal system. Frequent burping and burning in the upper stomach or esophagus are possible signs of gastrointestinal reflux, but they can also be attributable to something else. It is important for you to contact your doctor as soon as possible to find out the cause and avoid possible damage to your esophagus.