John D. Mitchell, MD | Emily Ash Morin, MD | Jacquelyn Weber, MD
130 Park Street SE, Suite 300 Vienna, Virginia 22180 / Phone:703-938-2266
8218 Wisconsin Avenue, Suite P-10 Bethesda, Maryland 20814 / Phone:301-656-2027
John D. Mitchell, MD
Emily Ash Morin, MD
Jacquelyn Weber, MD
130 Park Street SE, Suite 300
Vienna, Virginia 22180
8218 Wisconsin Avenue, Suite P-10
Bethesda, Maryland 20814
Glaucoma is a disease characterized by peripheral vision loss that is most often (but not always) associated with elevated intraocular pressures. Glaucoma is separated into two major categories, open angle glaucoma and narrow or closed angle glaucoma. Treatment options for both types of glaucoma have increased markedly over the past several years. The most common options are drops, laser or surgery.
For narrow angle glaucoma, a YAG peripheral iridotomy (or occasionally cataract surgery) is the indicated initial therapy. This is commonly referred to as a YAG PI. It involves using a laser to punch a small hole in the peripheral iris to act as an overflow mechanism if the “normal” fluid flow pathways become compromised. This is done with no sedation and the patient can usually return to normal activity that day. For some people with narrow angle glaucoma, they may need a YAG PI as well as drops or eventual laser if the PI is not controlling pressure alone. For patients with large cataracts that are causing the angle compromise, cataract surgery alone may solve the issue.
For open angle glaucoma, drops or SLT laser therapy (Selective Laser Trabeculoplasty) are often considered the best first line therapeutic options. The SLT laser is a procedure that helps improve outflow of aqueous fluid through the trabecular meshwork by destroying pigment and proteins that are “clogging the drain”. SLT is done without sedation and without postoperative restrictions.
Dr. Mitchell, Dr. Morin and Dr. Weber have extensive experience in managing glaucoma and would be happy to tailor your therapy to your unique situation.