Glaucoma is a disease that gradually damages the optic nerve. It is the second most common cause of blindness in the world. Glaucoma is caused by a build-up of pressure within the eye. Under normal conditions, fluid called the aqueous humor circulates around the front of the eye and eventually drains out of the eye through a channel. If that channel is blocked, the fluid accumulates behind the eye and eventually damages the optic nerve, causing blindness.
While there is so far no cure for glaucoma, there are safe and effective options for glaucoma treatment. In most cases, we will recommend eye drops, at least at first. If the drops prove ineffective, the next option is often laser surgery. There are several different types of laser surgeries, and the type used will depend on the kind of glaucoma the patient has.
Laser eye surgery is performed in the comfort of our office. Eye drops are typically administered to numb the eyes. The patient’s vision will probably be blurry after the procedure, but it will gradually improve.
Selective Laser Trabeculoplasty
Selective Laser Trabeculoplasty or SLT is often used to treat primary open-angle glaucoma. During this type of glaucoma treatment, the surgeon targets the clogged channel. The procedure is called “selective” for the laser’s energy is only absorbed by specific cells in the eye, leaving the rest of the channel intact. SLT can, thus, be repeated, if necessary. Selective Laser Trabeculoplasty can reduce the intraocular pressure by as much as 30 percent, and the results can last five years or longer.
Laser Peripheral Iridotomy
Laser Peripheral Iridotomy is a method used to treat the less common angle-closure glaucoma, which is caused by an abnormally narrow angle between the iris and the cornea that results in blocked fluid drainage. The surgeon uses the laser to create a channel in the iris that allows the fluid to drain.
Learn More About Your Options for Glaucoma Treatment
If you think you may have glaucoma or were recently diagnosed with glaucoma and are looking at your options for treatment, set up a time to visit Dr. Reena Patel at Wichita Vision Institute, conveniently located in Wichita, KS. We are proud to also offer iStent surgery for glaucoma treatment, which involves the use of a special optical implant. During a consultation at our office, you can get all the facts about your options for treatment. Contact our office today to schedule an appointment with our team!