What options are available to treat my glaucoma? This is more than likely a question that has run through your mind if you were recently diagnosed with glaucoma, a progressive eye condition that if left untreated can eventually lead to blindness. Although the initial diagnosis may be overwhelming, glaucoma can be successfully treated – but early detection is critical!
Glaucoma is asymptomatic and typically occurs without any noticeable symptoms. Oftentimes, it can go undiagnosed without routine check-ups. A few key treatment options are available for those diagnosed with mild-to-moderate glaucoma. If you have been diagnosed with glaucoma, it’s important to promptly start treatment to reduce pressure in your eye and stop the disease from worsening. We’ve broken down your available treatment options below.
Prescription Eye Drops
One common treatment for high intraocular pressure (IOP) and glaucoma is prescription eye drops. When taken as directed, glaucoma eye drops can reduce high IOP — most commonly by decreasing the amount of fluid created or by helping fluid drain from the eye. However, research has shown that more than 90% of patients are non-adherent with their prescription eye drops for glaucoma, and nearly 50% stop taking their medications before 6 months. Your doctor may prescribe more than one type of medication to manage your glaucoma over time. Be sure to tell your eye care professional if you’re taking other medications that may interfere with glaucoma eye drop medications. It’s important to note that prescription eye drops for high IOP and glaucoma will only work if you take them as prescribed, so it’s important to follow your doctor’s directions.
There are several types of laser treatments available to treat glaucoma. Laser trabeculoplasty is the most common, where a laser is aimed through a special lens and reflected onto the eye’s drainage system. This stimulates a biochemical change that helps fluid drain from your eye. Following laser treatment, you should expect a few follow-up appointments with your doctor to check your eye pressure. Typically, patients continue taking medication on a regular basis. There have been instances where patients received this procedure more than once as this treatment can wear off over time
Micro-Invasive Glaucoma Surgery
As technology has progressed, less invasive techniques have emerged that have improved the safety profile for glaucoma surgery. Today, more micro-invasive surgical options are available for patients who are interested in effective glaucoma management without having to rely solely on the continuous use of prescription medication. Micro-Invasive Glaucoma Surgery (MIGS) has become the preferred approach to glaucoma management for many eye care professionals and their patients with mild-to-moderate glaucoma.
What is the iStent inject® W?
The iStent inject® W is a micro-invasive procedure that is designed to effectively lower eye pressure in those with mild-to-moderate primary open-angle glaucoma in conjunction with cataract surgery. The iStent inject® W is FDA-approved and one of the smallest medical implants known to be implanted in the human body. The device includes two surgical-grade titanium stents that are preloaded in a single-use sterile injector. The specially designed injector helps your eye surgeon maneuver the implant for accurate, micro-targeted placement. You won’t see or feel the stents after they are inserted, but they are designed to effectively manage your eye pressure. In a pivotal trial of iStent inject® implanted at the time of cataract surgery, it was observed that 84% of patients were medication-free at 23 months.
Think you may be a candidate for the iStent inject® W? Talk to your eye care professional today to find out if it is right for you.
Speak with an Expert Today!
If you or a loved one has recently been diagnosed with glaucoma, don’t worry! Glaucoma can be treated, but early detection is critical. Determining the best glaucoma treatment option for you begins by talking to your eye care professional. They can help you get a clear and specific understanding of your glaucoma treatment needs, and together, you’ll be able to come up with a plan to manage your condition.
If you’re looking for an eye care professional in your area who is familiar with treating mild-to-moderate glaucoma, use our physician locator today! Also, don’t forget to follow Living with Glaucoma on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.
 Nordstrom BL, Friedman DS, Mozaffari E, Quigley HA, Walker AM. Persistence and adherence with topical glaucoma therapy. Am J Ophthalmol. 2005;140(4):598-606.
 Market Scope, 2017 Glaucoma Surgical Device Report
 Based on responder analysis of patients meeting the primary effectiveness endpoint
 iStent inject® Trabecular Micro-Bypass System: Directions for Use, Part #45-0176.
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