Glaucoma is an eye condition in which the optic nerve is progressively damaged, thereby impacting vision. Typically, this occurs when a patient experiences abnormally high pressure in one or both of their eyes. Although glaucoma can be detected early on with an annual eye test, patients that have this condition will need to seek treatment for the rest of their life. Although the damage experienced by glaucoma can’t be undone, patients do have treatment options, including laser eye surgery in Land O’ Lakes.
In this brief article, board-certified ophthalmologists with Florida Eye Center will discuss the process of selective laser trabeculoplasty (SLT). If you are experiencing eye pain, blurred vision, eye redness, or any other discomfort, schedule an appointment with an eye doctor in Land O’ Lakes today.
To diagnose glaucoma, an ophthalmologist will perform a comprehensive eye examination, including measuring corneal thickness, testing the optic nerve for any damage, and inspecting the eye for any vision loss. As we stated above, damage experienced from glaucoma isn’t completely curable; however, treatment can prevent further damage to the optic nerve and vision loss.
Treatment plans for glaucoma are developed to lower eye pressure. Generally, the first stage of treatment involves the patient being prescribed eye drops. There are several different types of eye drops that can reduce the production of fluid in the eye. An eye doctor may also prescribe oral medications to help reduce eye pressure. If eye drops and oral medications are causing significant side effects or fail to effectively reduce eye pressure, an ophthalmologist will recommend laser eye surgery in Land O’ Lakes to improve drainage.
SLT is a procedure for open-angle glaucoma patients that need to lower the intraocular pressure (IOP) in their eye. For this procedure, an ophthalmologist applies an advanced “cold laser” through a special contact lens on specific spots of the eye that are experiencing increased pressure. Specifically, the laser energy is applied to selected pigmented tissue, also known as “drainage” tissue, that “stimulates a biochemical change,” improving the outflow of fluid from the eye. A patient can experience the full effects of treatment within a month or two after the procedure.
SLT is a relatively pain-free procedure with minimal scarring. The procedure can take less than ten minutes and can be replicated every two to five years when the effects of the treatment start to diminish. SLT can be an initial treatment option for patients or as an additional treatment method if eye drop medications do not effectively reduce the pressure in the eye. To learn more about SLT and other treatment procedures for glaucoma, consult an eye doctor in Land O’ Lakes.
To schedule a consultation for laser eye surgery in Land O’ Lakes at the Florida Eye Center, please contact us today.
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