Trabeculectomy performed at our Pomona, NY, practice can help those with open- or closed-angle glaucoma who have not had success with more conservative treatment options. During trabeculectomy, Dr. Richard Gordon will create a drainage channel extending from the anterior chamber (area between the iris and cornea) to the white of your eye. A flap at the end of the channel will cover a small reservoir called a bleb. This tissue modification will allow fluid to drain into tears, reducing intraocular pressure (IOP). Trabeculectomy cannot restore vision lost due to glaucoma-related ocular nerve damage, but it can greatly reduce your risk of future vision loss.
Trabeculectomy involves creating a drainage channel in order to lower intraocular pressure.
Is Trabeculectomy Right for You?
Your eyes have a web of filter-like tissue called trabecular meshwork. Located between your iris and cornea, the trabecular meshwork contains a drainage channel that allows fluid to leave the anterior chamber of the eye. If you suffer from glaucoma, these channels are fully or partially blocked. As a result, pressure will build up inside your eye. Without treatment, this pressure could damage your optic nerve. Open-angle glaucoma is the most common type of glaucoma. With this condition, your drainage channel will narrow, causing the flow of fluid to slow down. If you have closed-angle glaucoma, the drainage channels are completely blocked, causing a sudden, rapid increase in pressure.
If you have not responded well to medications, the iStent®, or laser iridotomy, you may be a candidate for trabeculectomy.
Trabeculectomy can be an effective treatment for both open- and closed-angle glaucoma. Although safe, the treatment is more invasive than other procedures. Therefore, our doctors will typically recommend the treatment only after trying other approaches. If you have not responded well to medications, the iStent®, or laser iridotomy, you may be a candidate for trabeculectomy.
What to Expect during and after Trabeculectomy
Before your surgery, Dr. Gordon will numb your eye. We can also provide additional sedation, if desired. When you are comfortable, your ophthalmologist will create an opening into which fluid can drain. Your doctor will also make a flap on the outer surface of the eye to cover the canal, using tissues from the white of your eye. Tiny dissolvable sutures will keep the flap in place. The canal and flap will be hidden under your upper eyelid, making it virtually undetectable.
Trabeculectomy will typically take between 45 minutes to an hour to complete. After surgery, your vision may be blurred, and you could experience some sensitivity. To protect the bleb, you will need to wear a shield over your eye at night for about a month. Dr. Gordon will also prescribe antibiotic eyedrops, which you may need to apply for up to two months.
Benefits and Risks of Trabeculectomy
Trabeculectomy can help you to maintain a healthy IOP, reducing or even eliminating the need for glaucoma eye drops. Dr. Gordon will provide routine checkups to monitor your progress and determine whether you need additional medications.
Like all medical procedures, trabeculectomy poses some risks. These include infection, scarring, bleeding, retinal detachment, blurred vision, and vision loss. You can greatly reduce these risks by choosing an experienced ophthalmologist.
Contact Our Office for a Consultation
If you are suffering from glaucoma, contact our office to find out how our advanced treatments can help you. Dr. Gordon offers several sophisticated treatments that can protect your vision.