Glaucoma Treatment Option: Trabeculectomy Surgery

Glaucoma Treatment Option: Trabeculectomy Surgery

In the healthy eye, fluid called the aqueous humor is made in the front of the eye and flows out through a tiny drain called the trabecular meshwork. The trabecular meshwork is located in an area called the drainage angle. If fluid doesn’t flow out of the drainage angle properly, high pressure increases and damages the optic nerve. 

During trabeculectomy surgery your ophthalmologist makes a tiny incision in the conjunctiva (the clear lining over the sclera or the white of the eye). This is done under your upper eyelid and near the edge of the iris. 

Next, he or she will create a small flap in the sclera, underneath the incision. 

Then, a tiny piece of tissue is removed under the flap to make an opening into the eye. A small piece of the iris may also be removed to keep it from blocking the opening. This opening serves as a new channel for fluid to drain gradually from the eye, reducing pressure. 

The flap is sewn back into place with tiny stitches which help guard against too much fluid draining out at once. The area where fluid drains from the trabeculectomy is called a filtering bleb, as fluid filters out of the eye and into the bleb it looks like a bubble. Because the bleb is under the eyelid, it is not usually visible.

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In the healthy eye, fluid called aqueous humour is made in the front of the eye and flows out through a tiny drain called the trabecular meshwork. The trabecular meshwork is located in an area called the drainage angle. If fluid does not flow out of the drainage angle properly, eye pressure increases and damages the optic nerve.

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A photo showing how if the drainage angle is too narrow for fluid to flow out of the eye properly, pressure increases. Eventually the pathway for fluid to flow out of they eye may become completely blocked.
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