Laser Peripheral Iridotomy

For patients with narrow anatomical angles or angle-closure glaucoma, laser peripheral iridotomy is necessary to prevent an emergent rise in eye pressure, resulting in severe painful vision loss and even blindness. In both of these conditions, space, where fluid drains typically from inside the eye, is narrow due to either natural anatomy or other conditions such as cataracts, scarring, abnormal blood vessel growth. When fluid can not adequately leave the eye, the pressure inside builds, causing pain and pressure on the optic nerve; this results in damage to the nerve and ultimately to one’s vision. A laser peripheral iridotomy is a procedure where a laser is used to make a microscopic hole in the colored part of the eye, the iris. This creates a bypass for the fluid preventing the narrow part from closing further. It is a quick and straightforward procedure with minimal side effects. It can be done in a preventative manner or as a treatment if one suffers from an acute narrow-angle attack.