Glaucoma Filtration Surgery is the most common surgery for open-angle glaucoma. It helps the eye drain liquid more effectively.
A clear liquid called aqueous humor circulates inside the front portion of the eye. In open-angle glaucoma, this liquid does not flow efficiently through the eye’s sponge-like drainage system (known as the trabecular meshwork). When this liquid fails to drain properly, pressure builds within the eye.
The medical term for this pressure is intraocular pressure. Such pressure inside the eye may damage the optic nerve and lead to vision loss. Glaucoma filtration surgery is one procedure that may help lower intraocular pressure.
Glaucoma filtration surgery is also known as trabeculectomy. The eye surgeaon makes a small flap in the white of the eye (the sclera). This is followed by the creation of a reservoir called a filtration bleb. The aqueous humor can drain into this reservoir and be absorbed into the blood vessels around the eye. After carefully constructing the filtration bleb, incision in the sclera is closed with tiny stitches.
Drugs to reduce scarring are often applied during and after surgery.
Although the success rate is quite high, sometimes a single surgical procedure cannot halt the progression of glaucoma. Another surgery and/or continued treatment with medications may be necessary.
As with all surgeries, there are risks associated with glaucoma filtration surgery. One of the most common complications is scarring. Pain is unusual after surgery, although your eye may feel tender and sensitive. Sudden, severe, or deep-seated pain, especially if it is associated with loss of vision, should be reported to ophthalmologist immediately.
Postoperative care is as important to the long-term success of the operation as the surgery itself. In follow-up appointments, the doctor examines the filtering bleb, the external appearance of the eye, your eye pressure, and the back of your eye.