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Glaucoma Selective laser trabeculoplasty (SLT)

Hi l am 46 years old have Glaucoma and have been taking eyedrops for 12 years since diagnosed. My eye doctor said theres been some nerve damage but l havent noticed any vision loss and l still have very good vision 20/20 vision l dont need to wear glasses or contacts. l recently visited my eye doctor becasue the drops were causing some dry eye but nothing serious just a bit annoying. He said l should consider Selective laser trabeculoplasty (SLT) He said it should lower my eye pressure more then eye drops which will help save my vision better  long term and l may not have to take drops any more and worry about dry eyes. He said its totally safe and any permanent side effect or harm to the eyes are almost unheard of. l think l read the laser Strength in SLT is not powerful enough to harm the eye so theres no risk, is that correct?
l have excellent vision now what l am worried about is if l have the SLT done and it somehow harms my vision and its not as good afterwards for the rest of my life , am l just being over fearful or parnanoid . My question is should l listen to my eye specialist and go ahead with the SLT or should l look at alternative eye drops instead
1 Responses
177275 tn?1511755244
The paradigm for treating glaucoma has changed world wide over the past 15 years. Now the preferred initial treatment is SLT and if that doesn't work then go to drops. So I would recommend you have SLT. The chance of complications with an experienced opthalmologist is very very low.  The biggest risk is that it doesn't lower the IOP or that IOP goes down but still need some drops. It is very imporant you understand that glaucoma doesn't affect the central vision until very late in the course of the disease. So don't feel good about seeing 20/20. What is important is how much damage to your optical nerve and your peripheral vision. I have seen glaucoma patients with 20/20 vision but legal blindness and total loss of function. they have a tiny island of central vision in a sea of blindness. Get the SLT.  
6 Comments
thanks for the advice , l will
Good luck and be sure all your blood relatives know you have glaucoma, as it puts them at increased risk.  They need to see ophthalmologist yearly
l told my sister and she got tested ten years ago and was normal. One more question recently l got a dark circles under my eyes mainly my left eye but its not that bad or noticeable cable and my left eye lid feels a bit heavy, would that most likely be to do with factors like stress or lack of sleep rather then anything to do with Glaucoma or the glaucoma eye drops, ?thanks
1. Your sister and all blood relatives need to be tested YEARLY and will need an additional glaucoma test such as visual fields or nerve fiber layer OCT.
2. Some glaucoma drops leave dark circles around the eye. The most common is LUMIGAN (US brand name),  less common latanoprost or travaprost.
3. what drops are you taking?
l'm taking Azarga which contains brinzolamide 1% and timolol 0.5% . If it is causing dark circles is that just a cosmetic or appearance problem or could it be something to worry about in terms of eye health,  should l see my eye doctor about it. l plan to have the laser surgry in december, maybe l wont need eye drops after that if its successful
Neither of those two medications are associated with darkening of the eyelids.
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177275 tn?1511755244
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