Expertly Treat Glaucoma
West Texas Eye Associates of El Paso offers expert glaucoma treatment using a variety of medical and surgical procedures. It is estimated that over two million Americans have some form of glaucoma and half of them do not know it. Glaucoma is a potentially blinding disease, however if diagnosed and treated early, the prognosis is usually excellent.
What is Glaucoma?
Normally, an inflow and outflow of fluid occurs within the eye. When the outflow of this fluid becomes blocked, pressure builds up in the eye. This increased pressure may damage the optic nerve in the back of the eye causing reduced vision.
What are the symptoms?
What are the risks?
Given the age is the greatest risk factor ,glaucoma can affect anyone. Other factors conferring higher risk include :
• Genetic / family history of glaucoma
• History of hypertension, myopia, diabetes
How is Glaucoma detected?
Glaucoma is detected using a combination of specialized testing. Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT), a sophisticated imaging device, provides a comprehensive and precise analysis of the optic nerve. This allows for early detection and immediate action.
Measuring the intraocular pressure, testing your peripheral vision, inspecting optic nerve damage and inspection of the drainage angle of your eye will all be performed by your doctor during your evaluation for glaucoma.
Treatment for Glaucoma
Thankfully there are many treatments available that greatly decrease your chances of vision loss. West Texas Eye Associates of El Paso is dedicated to providing our glaucoma patients with the best treatments available, including a range of minimally invasive glaucoma surgeries and lasers.
Eye drops can effectively control glaucoma when used properly. Glaucoma eye drops reduce pressure by slowing the production of fluid in the eye and by increasing the drainage of fluid from the eye.
Minimally Invasive Glaucoma Surgery (MIGS)
Hydrus / iStent® /Kahook dual blade: Hydrus and iStent are both tiny medical implants that effectively lower the pressure inside of the eye. The iStent is the smallest medical implants known to be implanted into the human body – it’s that small! Once implanted into the eye, the Hydrus and iStent® work to restore your eye’s natural ability to drain fluid, keep eye pressure at a safe level, and possibly allow your doctor to reduce or eliminate your need for glaucoma drops.
Hydrus and iStent® are micro-bypass stents that effectively create a new channel through which your eye can drain fluid and lower the intraocular pressure. The Hydrus and iStent® are inserted during cataract surgery, allowing you to treat two eye conditions in one surgery.
Kahook double blade
The Kahook Dual Blade is a safe and effective glaucoma treatment that allows the surgeon to make precise incisions within the eye to help reduce and control the intraocular pressure.
What is SLT?
SLT stands for “Selective Laser Trabeculoplasty”. This is a laser procedure used to treat glaucoma by reducing the pressure in the eye.
What are the advantages of SLT?
There are a few key reasons why SLT may be deemed beneficial for you:
Safe: SLT is not associated with systemic side effects or the compliance and cost issues of medications.
Selective: SLT utilizes selective photothermolysis to target only specific cells, leaving the surrounding tissue intact.
Smart: SLT stimulates the body’s natural mechanisms to enhance outflow of the fluid in your eye.
Sensible: SLT therapy is reimbursed by Medicare and many other insurance providers, which minimizes your out-of-pocket expenses.
SLT does not rely on medicines, instead, uses an advanced laser system to target only specific cells of the eye- those containing melanin, a natural pigment. This allows for only these cells to be affected, leaving surrounding tissue intact. As a result, your body’s own healing response helps lower the pressure in your eye.
How is SLT performed?
SLT is performed in the comfort of our clinic. You will sit in a conventional exam chair, where the doctor will use a slit lamp to examine your eye. The same slit lamp contains the SLT laser. During the procedure, the doctor will put anesthetic drops in your eyes to numb it, and then place a lens on your eye to better viewing. The laser is applied to the edge of your pupil. The entire procedure only takes a few moments.
Will I feel anything with the laser treatment?
Generally, the laser treatment does not cause pain. However, studies show some patients experience a sensation during treatment. You may see a green flash or light, and feel nothing from the laser. The lens used on your eye may cause some redness or irritation.
This laser procedure is mostly performed on patients who demonstrate narrow filter. The laser beam is used to create a small opening on the rim of the iris to help the outflow of aqueous, therefore reducing eye pressure.