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glaucoma

glaucoma

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Glaucoma

Glaucoma is the leading cause of blindness in the United States. It is a disease that most commonly affects older people, but it can occur at any age. Loss of vision is preventable if the disease is detected early and treatment is started. Glaucoma is a disease of the optic nerve. The optic nerve carries the images we see to the brain. The optic nerve is like an electric cable containing a huge number of wires, and a buildup of pressure within the eye from glaucoma can damage those wires, causing blind spots to develop. Glaucoma is a leading cause of blindness in the United States, especially among older patients. But loss of sight from glaucoma can be prevented with early detection and treatment. Clear liquid called the aqueous humor flows in and out of the eye. This liquid is not part of the tears on the surface of the eye. The flow of the aqueous fluid is like a sink with the faucet turned on all the time. If the drainage mechanism within the eye is clogged or blocked, the fluid pressure rises within the eye, which can damage the optic nerve. Regular eye examinations by your ophthalmologist are the best way to detect glaucoma. The most common type of glaucoma, chronic open angle glaucoma, is a gradual, painless process that patients usually are unaware of until the loss of vision is profound. Treatment for glaucoma requires you to work closely with your doctor. Your ophthalmologist can prescribe treatment, but only you can make sure follow his instructions. Never stop taking or change your medications without first consulting your doctor. Frequent eye exams and tests are critical in order to monitor any changes.Remember, it is your vision. You must do your part to maintain it!

Treatments for Glaucoma

HRT ll (Heidelberg Retina Tomograph II)

HRT is a confocal scanning laser ophthalmoscope used for the early detection and follow-up glaucoma. This latest HRT technology is a non-threatening, non-invasive, fast and easy examination-ensuring the highest quality and most accurate data.

Visual Field

Visual Field is the total area where objects can be seen in the peripheral vision while the eye is focused on a central point. Visual Field test will detect any loss of peripheral vision and provide a map of that loss which will be helpful in diagnosing the cause of the loss.

Selective Laser Trabeculoplasty (SLT)

Selective laser trabeculoplasty(SLT) is one of the greatest advances in the surgical treatment of intraocular pressure (IOP) in patients with open-angle glaucoma. Prior to its introduction, medications and argon laser trabeculoplasty(ALT) were the ophthalmologist's primary tools.

HOW IT WORKS.

SLT works by using a specific wavelength to irradiate and target only the melanin-containing cells in the trabecular meshwork, without incurring collateral thermal damage to adjacent non-pigmented trabecular meshwork cells and underlying trabecular beams. When treated with SLT, a primarily biologic response is induced in the trabecular meshwork which involves the release of cytokines that trigger macrophage recruitment and other changes leading to IOP reduction.

The laser beam bypasses surrounding tissue leaving it undamaged by light. This is why, unlike ALT, SLT is repeatable several times. While ALT patients can receive two treatments in a lifetime, SLT patients can receive two treatments a year.

SLT requires a specially designed laser:


A short pulse to allow for thermal relaxation
Precise wavelength for optimal melanin absorption
Sufficient energy to heat melanin to the point that it releases cytokines
Sufficient spot size to ensure full coverage at the trabecular meshwork
Lumenis has specifically developed the Selecta® II Glaucoma Laser System to these specifications, meeting all of the clinical conditions neccessary to perform successful SLT procedures again and again.