Trabeculectomy Glaucoma Surgery Will Permanently Lower Intraocular Pressure with many Risks that must be Evaluated
Conventional glaucoma surgery, typically referred to as Trabeculectomy makes a new opening in the eye just above the cornea for the fluid to leave the eye. Your eye doctor may suggest this treatment if other treatments have failed to adequately control the intraocular eye pressure. Trabeculectomy surgery often is performed after medicines and laser surgeries have failed to control the eye pressure. Trabeculectomy surgery is usually performed in an outpatient surgery center or hospital. Before the surgery, you will be given medicine to help you relax. Your eye surgeon will make small injections around the eye to numb it. A small piece of tissue is removed to create a new channel for the fluid to drain from the eye. For several weeks after the surgery, you must put drops in the eye to fight infection and inflammation. These drops will be different from those you may have been using before surgery. As with laser surgery, trabeculectomy glaucoma surgery is performed on one eye at a time. Usually the operations are four to six weeks apart.
Trabeculectomy surgery is about 60 to 80 percent effective at lowering eye pressure. If the new drainage opening narrows, a second operation may be needed. Trabeculectomy surgery works best if you have not had previous eye surgery, such as a cataract operation. In some instances, your vision may not be as good as it was before trabeculectomy surgery. There are potentially many side effects, including cataract, problems with the cornea, and inflammation or infection inside the eye, which can be vision threatening. The buildup of fluid in the back of the eye may cause some patients to see shadows in their vision. If you have any of these problems, tell your doctor so a treatment plan can be developed.