Laser peripheral iridotomy

Laser peripheral iridotomy

Your condition

In the front of the eye is a circulating fluid called aqueous humor. This fluid is constantly being produced and drained away to maintain a normal eye pressure (intraocular pressure).

Sometimes the drainage system can become narrowed or closed off, which can increase the intraocular pressure to dangerous levels (angle-closure glaucoma). This usually happens as part of the natural lens maturing into a cataract.

What does the laser do?

iridotomyA hole created in the iris (peripheral iridotomy) will stop the iris moving forward and causing angle closure glaucoma.

Even if only one eye is affected, both eyes usually need to have this treatment.

How is it work?

A small hole (iridotomy) is created in the iris with a laser. Once you have had laser treatment you may need to wait for the treating doctor to check your eye pressure before going home.

What to expect?

  • You will have eye drops instilled to prepare the eye for the treatment.
  • Local anaesthetic drops will also be instilled before the procedure.
  • Treatment is delivered through a lens that rests against the eye.
  • Continue all other regular drops (i.e. glaucoma drops) after laser treatment.
  • As mentioned, cataract surgery may be an option depending on how mature your lens is.
  • Side effects may include discomfort, sensitivity to light (photophobia), headache, or blurry vision for several hours afterwards. Wearing sunglasses (with your prescription, if required) can make the trip home more comfortable.