450 North Bedford Dr. Suite 101 Beverly Hills
Fax (310) 274-7229
Contact our Beverly Hills practice to find out more about the alternatives to laser eye surgery available through Dr. Peter Cornell and Dr. Stuart Stoll.
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iStent Trabecular Micro-Bypass Stent Goniotomy
iStent is the smallest medical device known to be implanted in the human body and to ever be approved by the FDA! In fact, it is 20,000 times smaller than the intraocular lens (IOL) that is used to replace a patient’s cataracts. iStent Trabecular Micro-Bypass Stent exactly like the stents used to prevent heart attacks and strokes; when blood vessels get clogged, a stent creates access to the vessel flow.
Controlling eye pressure is an extremely important factor in reducing the risk of vision loss due to glaucoma. The iStent Trabecular Micro-Bypass Stent is indicated for use in conjunction with cataract surgery for the reduction of intraocular pressure (IOP) in adult patients with mild to moderate open-angle glaucoma currently treated. In addition, iStent is currently the only FDA-approved device for the treatment of mild to moderate open-angle glaucoma.
Treating Cataracts & Managing Glaucoma
It is placed in your eye during cataract surgery and is so small that you won’t be able to see or feel it after the procedure is over. That being said, your eyes will likely be sore and sensitive after the surgery.
iStent is designed to create a permanent opening in your trabecular meshwork, and works continuously to improve the outflow of fluid from your eyes to help control eye pressure.
For patients with combined cataract and open-angle glaucoma, iStent reduces intraocular pressure (IOP) by improving aqueous humor outflow. Inserted through a 1.5-mm corneal incision, iStent is the only FDA-approved device for the treatment of mild to moderate open-angle glaucoma.
Dimensions of iStent implant
- Length: 1mm
- Height: 0.33mm
- Snorkel: 0.25mm x 120um (bore diameter)
- Weight: 60ug
Preparations Before Surgery
Up until your operation, you should continue using any prescribed eye drops, unless otherwise directed. One of our surgeons will go over all your medications that you are currently taking to make sure everything is safe to take before the procedure; this is particularly important if you take blood thinners will need to D/C. As such, be sure to bring a list of your current medications as well as a brief medical history to your consultation appointment.
After the Surgery
Because iStent is an outpatient procedure, people can often return home the same day. Once the procedure is done, precautions are usually short term. Some of these include:
- Your eye may be covered by an eye shield that you can remove the following morning.
- You will receive antibiotic and anti-inflammatory eye drops to use for the next four to six weeks.
- It is encouraged to see an ophthalmologist the following day.
- You should refrain from strenuous activities including sports, weight lifting or anything that may be straining for a while, as this will increase your eye pressure.
Though recovery time is rapid, we may recommend that you take a full week off from work, so please plan accordingly with your employer. Though complications are rare, it is highly recommended to following the above precautions to ensure the best possible results.
Benefits of iStent Trabecular Micro-Bypass Stent Goniotomy
The benefits of iStent Trabecular Micro-Bypass implant are numerous. Some of these include:
- The procedure spares important eye tissue that is often damaged by traditional surgeries
- iStent is an FDA-approved device and it has a similar safety profile to cataract surgery
- It does not limit treatment options that might help maintain your vision in the future
- It has a very quick recovery time
- Many patients have been able to discontinue glaucoma drops after iStent surgery
- Patients will no longer have to wait until glaucoma has advanced far enough to warrant a more aggressive and complicated extra-scleral drainage surgery
- All Medicare Administrative Contractors (MACs) cover this procedure when medically necessary
In addition, patients can expect an improvement in quality of life with iStent Trabecular Micro-Bypass Stent, as it helps to eliminate and reduce glaucoma medications. For example, if you forget to take your eye drops, this can cause large changes in your eye pressure. Large changes in eye pressure can increases the risk for vision loss.
It also helps curb potential complications of more invasive glaucoma surgery may lessen the negative impact of surgical glaucoma treatment on a patient’s quality of life.
Am I a good candidate for iStent Trabecular Micro-Bypass Stent or Goniotomy?
You are likely a candidate for iStent if you suffer from both glaucoma and cataracts or if you are scheduled to have cataract surgery and are currently taking one or more medications to lower your eye pressure, we can discuss if iStent is right for you.
If you have any questions, comments, or concerns about this procedure, do not hesitate to call us at 310.274.9205 or through our online form.