Untreated glaucoma is one of the leading causes of blindness across the United States. Most who suffer from glaucoma are unaware, as many forms of glaucoma have no warning signs. If left untreated, your field of vision may continue to narrow and eventually lead to full blindness. Damage caused by glaucoma cannot be reversed, but treatment and regular check ups can help slow or prevent vision loss, especially in the early stages. Depending on how serious your condition is, treatment for glaucoma may include eye drops, oral medications, or surgery to decrease the pressure inside your eyes.
Our ophthalmologists at Marano Eye Care may initially prescribe you eye drops to help control the pressure in your eye caused by glaucoma. Eye drops that may be prescribed include beta blockers, prostaglandins, or inhibitors to help improve how aqueous fluid drains from your eye or to decrease the amount of fluid your eye produces.
Oral medications may be prescribed to you in addition to eye drops if the pressure in your eyes has not been reduced. Glaucoma medication also helps decrease the production of fluid and pressure within your eye. The combination of both eye drops and oral medication can bring eye pressure down efficiently and to your desired level.
If your condition has worsened and eye drops and medication are not successfully working, our ophthalmologists may recommend laser surgery. There are two types of laser surgery that can help drain aqueous fluid from the eye, which are laser trabeculoplasty and iridotomy.
One of the most common laser surgeries for open-angle glaucoma is laser trabeculoplasty. This procedure uses a small laser beam to unclog the drainage angle in your eye, allowing fluid to easily and properly pass through. The procedure itself generally takes 10 to 15 minutes and is painless. Your eye pressure will be lower than it was before surgery.
An iridotomy is used for patients who have angle-closure glaucoma. One of our ophthalmologists will use a laser to create a small hole in the iris, helping fluid flow to the drainage angle.
Glaucoma laser surgery can usually be performed at one of our offices or at an outpatient surgery center.
Traditional surgery may be recommended to you if other treatments have not helped in reducing eye pressure. These procedures help create new drainage channels for the aqueous humor – the clear fluid in the front of the eyeball – to leave your eye.
During a trabeculectomy, your eye surgeon makes a tiny flap in the white of your eye (sclera). Your surgeon will then proceed to create a bubble, similar to a pocket, in the conjunctiva called a filtration bleb. This allows the aqueous humor to drain out of the eye through the flap and into the bleb. Fluid is then absorbed in the bleb by the tissue around your eye, decreasing eye pressure.
Drainage devices are also another surgical option your doctor may recommend. During this procedure, your eye surgeon implants a small drainage tube in your eye. This tube sends the fluid to a collection area or reservoir. Your surgeon makes the reservoir beneath the conjunctiva in your eye – where the fluid is then absorbed into your blood vessels.
Glaucoma Specialists in New Jersey
If you’re in need of glaucoma treatment, please schedule an appointment at one of our locations in Denville, Livingston or Newark, NJ. Contact us to learn more about our treatment options or fill out our contact form!