Bono’s Glaucoma

U2’s Frontman Bono Wears Tinted Glasses More Than For Looks

When we picture of Bono in our minds, we all probably imagine him with his light orange-tinted glasses. In 2004, at the age of 54, Bono revealed that his glasses function to help him with a chronic underlying condition, Glaucoma. He announced that he has had glaucoma for 20 years and ‘has an excellent vision but noticed that objects and lights were accompanied by cloudiness and rings-an indicator of the condition.’ Thankfully he noted ‘I have good treatments and am going to be fine,’ he said.

What is Glaucoma?

There are several types of glaucoma but the most common one is open-angle glaucoma. In a nutshell, glaucoma is loss of the optic nerve tissue which results in gradual loss of the side vision, leaving the central vision a perfect 20/20 until the very end (see figure). We do not fully understand exactly why the optic nerve tissue is lost but eye pressure is the only contributing factor that we have control over. Glaucoma treatment aims to keep the eye pressure low and make sure the optic nerve has a good blood supply.

Many people ask what eye pressure level causes glaucoma and the answer is not the same for each person. In general, we consider eye pressure above 21mmHg to be high however many people have higher eye pressures and do not have glaucoma while some with lower eye pressures do have glaucoma (a variant called Normal-tension Glaucoma). The goal of glaucoma management is to get the eye pressure to a level that is right for the particular person which means they do not continue to lose side vision. This can be achieved via prescription eye drops and surgery if needed. To determine if you have glaucoma, the doctor will consider several factors including but not limited to presenting optic nerve appearance, change in optic nerve appearance over time, eye pressure, corneal thickness, and side vision testing results.

Glaucoma is commonly asymptomatic because the loss of side vision is so gradual that a person does not notice it until the disease is very advanced. However, some glaucoma patients report light sensitivity and hazy vision which is improved with tinted lenses. It seems that Bono found the light orange tint helps him most with his glare symptoms.

What Type of Glaucoma?

Bono has not indicated which type of glaucoma he has however, 34 years old is a young age of onset. There is a version called congenital glaucoma however he would have shown signs of that as a young child so I doubt he has that type. We do know that he has stated his vision is fine and he is getting the eyecare he needs to prevent the advancement of the disease. If you are worried if you have glaucoma the only way to know is to get regular dilated eye exams. Glaucoma is very treatable however if left untreated can progress to blindness. Remember, the goal of glaucoma treatment is to prevent vision loss and therefore it is critical to catch and manage the disease early. Current glaucoma treatments only prevent continued loss of side vision and cannot bring back what has already been lost.

Other Celebrities Rumored to Have Glaucoma:

Whoopi Goldberg
Andrea Bocelli has congenital glaucoma, total vision loss at 12 years old after suffering brain heme form soccer accident
Astronaut John Glenn
Kirby Puckett baseball player ‘in 1996, he woke up with total blindness in his right eye. This turned out to be glaucoma and the condition forced him to retire’

 

If you enjoyed this article about Bono’s Glaucoma, be sure to check our our article on Fetty Wap’s Congenital Glaucoma.

A Little Bit About…

A Little Bit About…

Ashley Iketani-Castillo, OD, MS

Dr. Iketani is a Florida native who has a passion for managing ocular disease. She views each patient as a whole person and believes the eyes are a window to a patient’s systemic health. She also has a passion for fitting rigid lenses on patients with corneal disease to help them obtain their best vision.

Dr. Iketani graduated from the University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Optometry where she completed internships at the Hefner Veteren’s Affairs hospital in Charlotte, NC and The Metrolina Association for the Blind which focused on Low Vision rehabilitation. Prior to pursuing optometry, she obtained a Masters of Science which focused on developmental genetics and worked as a technician in a lab that researched breast cancer.

Dr. Iketani currently resides in Cincinnati where her husband is starting his pediatrician fellowship,with their two cats and baby boy.

Disclaimer

Information contained within this Web site is intended solely for educational purposes and is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice relative to your specific medical condition or question. Always seek the advice of your physician or other health care provider for any questions you may have regarding your medical condition. Only your physician can provide specific diagnoses and therapies. By using this Web site, you agree to this Medical Disclaimer.

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205 E Council Street, Suite B
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Phone: (704) 310-5002
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205 E Council Street, Suite B
Salisbury, North Carolina 28144

Phone: (704) 310-5002
Fax: (704) 310-5003
kristin@salisburyeyecareandeyewear.com

 

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