Home > Patients & Visitors > Health Library > Laser Surgery for Glaucoma: Pros and Cons
Laser surgery uses a very focused beam of light
to cut, break down, or destroy tissue. Doctors use laser
surgery when medicines fail to control vision loss caused by
glaucoma. Laser surgery is done
more often than conventional surgery for glaucoma. But repeated laser
procedures can lead to scarring.
The major advantages of laser surgery over conventional
surgery for glaucoma include:
The most common complication from laser surgery
for glaucoma is increased pressure within the eye. The pressure may be normal
immediately after laser surgery but then may rise sharply within 1
to 4 hours, especially in people who have
severe glaucoma. The doctor may give you eyedrop medicine before and after
surgery to prevent this complication. Other complications
Before laser surgery, medicine to numb the eye
may be applied to the eye directly (topical anesthetic) or injected behind the
eyeball (retrobulbar anesthesia). Some people feel a sensation of heat in the
eye during laser surgery.
The main disadvantage of laser surgery for
glaucoma is that it may not always lower pressure in the eye.
ByHealthwise StaffPrimary Medical ReviewerAdam Husney, MD - Family MedicineSpecialist Medical ReviewerChristopher J. Rudnisky, MD, MPH, FRCSC - Ophthalmology
Current as ofAugust 21, 2015
Current as of:
August 21, 2015
Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine & Christopher J. Rudnisky, MD, MPH, FRCSC - Ophthalmology
To learn more about Healthwise, visit Healthwise.org.
© 1995-2015 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.
Our interactive Decision Points guide you through making key health decisions by combining medical information with your personal information.
You'll find Decision Points to help you answer questions about:
Get started learning more about your health!
Our Interactive Tools can help you make smart decisions for a healthier life. You'll find personal calculators and tools for health and fitness, lifestyle checkups and pregnancy.
Feeling under the weather?
Use our interactive symptom checker to evaluate your symptoms and determine appropriate action or treatment.