Incisional Glaucoma Surgery
Incisional Glaucoma Surgery – In Hospital
Once glaucoma has been diagnosed, treatment should begin as soon as possible to help minimize the risk of permanent vision loss. There is no cure for glaucoma, so treatment focuses on relieving symptoms and preventing further damage.
Glaucoma filter surgery, also known as trabeculectomy, is a surgical procedure to remove part of the trabecular meshwork of the eye, increasing drainage of fluid from the eye. A trabeculectomy is one of the most common surgical procedures used to treat open-angle and chronic closed-angle glaucoma. A new drainage passage is created by cutting a small hole in the sclera (the white part of the eye) and creating a collection pouch between the sclera and conjunctiva (the outer covering of the eye). This serves to create a system for bypassing the blocked drainage channels, encouraging fluid drainage and reducing eye pressure.
Glaucoma filter surgery is usually an outpatient procedure that does not require a hospital stay. Most patients only experience mild pain post-surgery. The treated eye must remain covered at night for several weeks after the procedure. In addition, patients will need to apply corticosteroid eye drops to the eye to reduce swelling for up to two months. Activity will be somewhat limited for the first few weeks after glaucoma filter surgery, and specific restrictions will be discussed.
iStent Aqueous Shunt Procedure
The iStent® aqueous shunt is a device designed to lower intraocular pressure in glaucoma patients. The FDA-approved iStent is so tiny that it is not visible nor can the patient feel it after placement. Its purpose is to create a permanent opening in the trabecular meshwork in order to facilitate fluid drainage from the eyes.
The iStent is used for those patients with both open-angle glaucoma and cataracts. A surgeon performs one procedure to first replace the cloudy lens of the eye and then implant the iStent. The surgery is considered very safe, with a low risk of damage to the surrounding tissues of the eye.