During the past, cataract and glaucoma surgery were performed separately. Then an FDA-approved system called iStent surgery used to treat glaucoma symptoms was designed in 2012. The device was the first one ever approved to work with cataract surgery to decrease IOP or intraocular pressure in adults impacted by cataracts and moderate or mild open-angle glaucoma.
The iStent is the smallest device the FDA has ever approved. This device is so small, you can barely feel it or even see it. The size is comparable to one-third of a grain of rice. A permanent opening is created by the device to help improve the fluid flow from your eyes. This regulates your IOP while providing numerous advantages including:
• Protecting your eye tissues from the damage often resulting from traditional surgeries
• Provides a safe implant for cataract surgery
• Offers a fast recovery period
• Enables options for the future to preserve your vision
Unless directed otherwise by Dr. Patel, you should keep using your prescription eye drops until your iStent surgery. It is important to bring your brief medical history and a list of your medications to your consultation. Our physician must be aware of all the medications you are taking, especially any blood thinners.
The Results of the iStent Surgery
Local anesthesia is usually used for the iStent procedure and cataract removal surgery. The phacoemulsification procedure is used to remove your cataract. An ultrasonic device is then used to break apart and remove your cataract prior to the insertion of the IOL or artificial intraocular lens. The same incision is used to insert the titanium iStent with a sterile applicator. The iStent is advanced slowly into your eye’s trabecular meshwork. The combination of both procedures requires approximately fifteen to twenty minutes for each eye.
The iStent procedure is performed on an outpatient basis, so you will be able to return home on the same day. An eye shield is typically used to protect your eye after surgery, but you can take it off the next morning. You will need to see an ophthalmologist the day after your surgery. This procedure does not have a prolonged recovery period, but it is often recommended you avoid any strenuous activities such as lifting heavy objects, playing sports or straining for a period of time established by the Dr. Patel. This is because these types of activities will increase the pressure on your eyes.
The best place to start is setting up a consultation so you can be evaluated for the iStent surgery. At the Wichita Vision Institute, we can help you determine if this procedure is right for you. Contact us today to schedule your appointment.