Glaucoma refers to an eye disorders that damages the optic nerve. Glaucoma is usually associated with high intraocular pressure (IOP) which damages the optic nerve. If glaucoma is not treated it causes narrowing of vision field and eventually, blindness. Unfortunately, there are rarely any warning symptoms, and the patient may not even know he or she has glaucoma.Did you know that glaucoma is the second most frequent cause of blindness- after cataract worldwide, and after macular degeneration in the US?
Cause of Glaucoma
Glaucoma is caused by excess of the aqueous humor (eyeball fluid), or by blockage of the drainage channels in the trabecular meshwork in the front chamber of the eye.
Treatment of glaucoma of all types is basically aimed at controlling pressure within the eyeball (IOP). This may be done either by reducing the generation of the aqueous humor (eyeball fluid) or to increase the drainage of it. Some therapy may achieve both effects simultaneously. Glaucoma treatment can be via use of eye drops, oral medicine, or through surgery. It will depend on the reasons for glaucoma in each case.
Surgery invariably aims at increasing the outflow of the intraocular fluid to control the pressure.
· Trabeculectomy-Creation of an alternate drainage channel is called trabeculectomy. This approach can generate a higher drainage. Part of the trabecular network is removed for this purpose. Shunts and stents are installed as channels for drainage.
· Trabeculotomy- A trabeculotomy is identical to trabeculectomy, but incisions are made without removal of any tissue.
· Laser trabeculoplasty- This treatment is performed normally in addition to eye drops being used already. Very tiny holes are created using eye lasers to increase the drainage of the intraocular fluid.Selective laser trabeculoplasty (SLT) produces minimal heat and less chance of damage to neighboring tissue
· Goniotomy-A goniotomy is used for small children.A special lens is used for viewing inside the eye while creating openings in the trabecular meshwork.