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Trabeculotomy is a surgical procedure much like trabeculectomy. A piece of tissue in the eye's drainage angle is removed to create an opening. This new opening allows fluid (aqueous humour) to drain out of the eye. Trabeculotomy is a surgery for children only.
After surgery, drops that tighten (constrict) the pupil are used to keep the iris, the coloured part of the eye, from blocking the new opening.
Trabeculotomy is a good choice for children who have congenital glaucoma when the clear covering (cornea) over the iris is cloudy.
For children, trabeculotomy or goniotomy are preferred over trabeculectomy, because they are less invasive and less likely to cause cataracts. They also do a better job of lowering eye pressure in children who have glaucoma.
Trabeculotomy is successful for more than 80 out of 100 children whose glaucoma was not present at birth.footnote 1
The most common problem after trabeculotomy is scarring of the new opening in the eye. Scarring prevents fluid from draining out of the eye. Other complications of surgery may include:
Some children with congenital glaucoma need more than one surgery to control the high pressure in their eyes.
Surgery is more difficult and less likely to be successful for children who have severe congenital glaucoma.
Medicines may still be needed to control pressure in the eyes after surgery.
CitationsSalim S, Walton D (2009). Goniotomy and trabeculotomy. In M Yanoff, JS Duker, eds., Ophthalmology, 3rd ed., pp. 1241–1245. Edinburgh: Mosby Elsevier.
Current as of: December 18, 2019
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine & Anne C. Poinier MD - Internal Medicine & Christopher J. Rudnisky MD, MPH, FRCSC - Ophthalmology
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