Angle-closure Glaucoma Treatment
By David Gross on August 29, 2019
Glaucoma is an eye condition that causes damage to the optic nerve as intraocular pressure increases. Without proper treatment, glaucoma can lead to total blindness. Fortunately, most types of glaucoma progress slowly and are easy to manage. However, angle-closure glaucoma tends to come on suddenly.
Angle-closure glaucoma develops when the drainage system within the eye is cut-off, causing fluids and intraocular pressure to increase rapidly. Prompt angle-closure glaucoma treatment is vital to the preservation of a patient’s vision. At Deen-Gross Eye Centers, we offer our Merrillville, IN, and Hobart, IN, patients a number of treatments for angle-closure glaucoma. Our doctors can create a treatment plan that is best-suited to the patient’s unique situation.
When a patient is suffering from angle-closure glaucoma, the primary goal is to lower their intraocular pressure. The only way to effectively lower increased pressure caused by angle-closure glaucoma is through laser treatments or surgery.
However, our doctors will first use medication to temporarily lower pressure levels and clear up cloudiness within the cornea so that further treatment can be performed safely. Medication options include eye drops, oral medications, and intravenous medication. Often, multiple forms of medication are combined to both improve fluid drainage and reduce fluid production.
Once medication has taken effect and pressure levels are at a more suitable level, we can progress with treatment.
Laser iridotomy is the most common treatment for angle-closure glaucoma. An iridotomy is an outpatient procedure that only takes a few minutes per eye.
To start the procedure, we will use anesthetic drops to numb the eye. Next, a laser is used to create a small hole in the peripheral iris. The hole allows fluids that are trapped in the posterior chamber of the eye to start flowing again so that they can drain to the anterior chamber. An iridotomy effectively lowers intraocular pressure, but patients will need to continue to be monitored long-term.
Laser gonioplasty, also known as iridoplasty, is another form of laser surgery that can be used to treat angle-closure glaucoma for our Hobart patients. Like laser iridotomy, this is an outpatient procedure that takes just a few minutes per eye, and is performed with the use of anesthetic eye drops.
This technique uses a laser to slightly shrink areas of the iris and then pull them away from the drainage canal. This procedure is meant to relieve blockage so that the eye can drain more effectively. After treatment, patients will require frequent and continual monitoring of their eye pressure.
Laser iridotomy and laser gonioplasty are the most common forms of angle-closure glaucoma treatment. However, if our patients are suffering from chronic angle-closure glaucoma, meaning that the condition has existed for a long time, or the patient has had repeated attacks, they will likely require filtration surgery. During filtration surgery, our doctor creates a new drainage system so that fluids have another path where they can drain from the eye.
At Deen-Gross Eye Centers in Merrillville and Hobart, our doctors offer treatment for the most common eye diseases. If you are interested in learning how we can help you preserve your vision, contact us at your earliest convenience or call (219) 769-8989 to schedule an appointment.
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"After wearing glasses my entire life, Dr. Gross corrected my eyesight to better than 20/20 vision."Richard B - St. John, IN