A man with aggressive glaucoma whose father and grandfather both went blind from the condition is urging others to check their sight.

Demola Oduyemi, from Sutton, was diagnosed with glaucoma aged 26 and has retained his sight thanks to years of treatment at St Thomas’ Hospital.

Demola, who works in customer services and is in his mid-40s, was diagnosed in Nigeria after his father’s sight had been affected.

He aid: “My father went blind with glaucoma, as did my paternal grandfather and my mother also had it, although she wasn’t blind. My father’s doctor told him to get all his children tested for it – I was the only one who had it.

“I had surgery in Nigeria in one eye, which worked for a while, but after two years it started to scar over. After moving to the UK I came to London and I have been very fortunate to be a patient at St Thomas’ for the past 18 years. The care I have received is nothing short of excellent. I have had lots of treatments, from eye drops, laser and surgery in both eyes.

“My glaucoma is very aggressive – if I had not been diagnosed as early as I was, I would have lost my sight without question. My sight is fine now, and although the road has been bumpy, I can still carry out everyday tasks without hindrance.”

The disease usually occurs when fluid in the eye cannot drain properly and increases pressure inside the eye, putting pressure on the optic nerve, which is responsible for sight.

If it is not diagnosed and treated early it can lead to blindness. While some patients develop symptoms including blurred vision in the late stage of the disease, many patients have no symptoms at all and the condition is only detected through regular eye checks by optometrists.

Demola has urged everyone to be tested regularly before it is too late.

He added: “Glaucoma is a silent sight-taker, silently creeping up on people, damaging the eye and causing vision loss.

"Lots of people who have the condition might not have any symptoms, and the first they know is losing some or all vision.

"Remember, vision can be maintained and lost vision cannot be restored.”

Currently you are entitled to free testing for glaucoma with standard sight tests by optometrists if you are over 40 and have a family history of glaucoma or if you have been told by an ophthalmologist that you are at risk of glaucoma.