Glaucoma is an eye condition that affects the optic nerve because of increased intraocular pressure. The pressure increases when the balance between the production and drainage of the fluid known as aqueous humor is disrupted. The elevated pressure in the eye could damage the optic nerve and lead to visual field defects. The optic nerve is the communicative organ that sends visual messages to the brain. Glaucoma has three main types: open-angle glaucoma, closed-angle glaucoma, and refractory glaucoma. If the condition is left untreated, it could cause blindness due to nerve degeneration.
Glaucoma is treated by decreasing the intraocular pressure. There are three approaches to bring back the balance and adjust the pressure:
Eye drops containing prostaglandins and beta-blockers and other chemicals decrease the production of fluid in the eye or facilitate the drainage of fluid. If the eyes don’t respond to eye drops, oral medications such as carbonic anhydrase inhibitors will be prescribed.
Open-angle glaucoma can be treated by laser therapy in office settings. There are three laser treatment procedures:
•Selective Laser trabeculoplasty (SLT): In open-angle glaucoma, the angle between iris and cornea is open and the elevated pressure is because of gradual clogging of drainage canals. This method is used to open the trabecular meshwork canals that haven’t responded to eye drops. Sometimes it is used as the first treatment option.
•Laser iridotomy: This method is used for closed-angle glaucoma. In this condition, the mentioned angle that contains the meshwork is under the closed-angle entirely or partially. This operation doesn’t improve the vision and is for preventing the progress of the condition.
•Endoscopic cyclophotocoagulation: this operation includes the detachment of ciliary body epithelium to lower the intraocular pressure in refractory glaucoma in which the IOP is uncontrollable using other methods. The endoscope consists of three groups of fibers: a camera, a source of light and a diode laser for detachment. This procedure can be done concurrently with cataract extraction operation.
•Trabeculectomy: in this operation, a small hole is created in the sclera and is covered by a flap. This configuration is called a tap door. The tap door is connected to a bleb below the eye surface. The aqueous humor is drained to this bleb through the tap door. This mechanism prevents the fluid from draining too fast and therefore lowering the pressure more than what is required.
•Ahmed glaucoma valve implantation: This device consists of a plate, drainage tube, and a valve mechanism to drain the fluid while preventing hypotony. The valve is pressure sensitive and only opens when the pressure is higher than the accepted level. The grafting is a complex procedure which needs expertise.
The goal of glaucoma surgery is to prevent further damages to optic nerve. The surgery can’t recover the damages that has already inflicted and enhance the visual acuity but preserves the current vision. In rare cases the nerve damage is not permanent and the vision may improve gradually to a certain level after removing the pressure.
- It is notable that Individual leaflets based on the patient/client plan will be offered to you including instructions before and after the procedure and also for the upcoming follow-up. During your stay in Iran, you will be fully supported by Exon English and Arabic translation team, who will be happy to assist with any concerns or queries that arise.
Glaucoma surgery is considered as a safe surgery that has to be done as soon as the ophthalmologist determines it is required. The risks are very rare and include:
•Loss of vision
•Hypotony and lower pressure than the standard level
•Scar tissue formation
Note: This package information is provided by the scientific team ofExon Health Paradise Co. and is not intended to replace the medical advice of your doctor or healthcare provider. Please consult your healthcare provider for advice about a specific medical condition.