Glaucoma Treatment Can Prevent Vision Loss
Once it has been determined that one is a "glaucoma suspect" or has glaucoma, the status of the intraocular pressure, optic nerve and vision needs to be checked regularly for progression of the disease. Three tests will be performed as a baseline of the optic nerve appearance and function: stereoscopic optic nerve photographs, HRT II, and visual field testing. From these tests, all future tests will be compared to document the disease status.
If glaucoma is diagnosed, the doctors at Hines Sight will design a treatment plan based on your specific situation. Typically a medical approach using eye drops is the first line of treatment. To be effective, the eye drops must be taken regularly and continuously. Glaucoma eye medications can have side effects. You should notify your eye doctor immediately if you think you experience side effects.
Side Effects May Include:
- Red eyes
- Change in heartbeat
- Stinging eyes
- Blurry vision
- Frequent headaches
If further therapy is necessary, the second line of treatment is usually laser surgery to help reduce the eye pressure more. A new type of laser procedure, the SLT (Selective Laser Trabeculoplasty), is now available for treatment of glaucoma.
SLT – Selective Laser Trabeculoplasty Selective Laser Trabeculoplasty (SLT) is a widely accepted treatment option in glaucoma treatment. SLT definitely offers a new glimpse of hope for glaucoma patients. By engaging in this NEW laser technology the ophthalmologists can now further lower pressure that can possibly help a patient avoid a more invasive surgery. SLT might even reduce the dependence on medications or drops. The surgical process typically involves only numbing of the eye with topical eye drops. A contact lens is applied which will help the surgeon focus the laser on the proper region when applying the laser spots on the trabecular meshwork. After the procedure, anti-inflammatory drops are used for a week or so.
What does the procedure do? SLT actually lowers (IOP) intraocular pressure by cleaning out the pressure drain (the trabecular meshwork) by small pulsing low-energy laser light to target cells in the trabecular meshwork of the eye, allowing more pressure to leave the eye.
To speak with our Glaucoma experts, contact our Denver, Colorado or Glenwood Springs office today!
With any type of glaucoma, periodic examinations are very important to prevent vision loss. Because glaucoma can worsen without your being aware of it, your treatment may need to be changed over time.