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SLT’s as a first line procedure for the treatment of glaucoma

Glaucoma is a silent disease that creeps up on individuals over a period of  many years. This makes treating glaucoma problematic because many patients have difficulty believing that they have a problem with there eyes. Treatment for patients with glaucoma generally requires the use of drops to keep eye pressures under control. These drops have a tendency to be quite uncomfortable for patients creating redness, burning, and itchiness. The side effects of these drugs tend to make compliance difficult. In the past a second line of treatment would then include a SLT (Selective Laser Trabeculoplasty) which is used to lower pressures. Recent studies show that the use of SLT should be done much sooner, making it a first line procedure.  In an article by Garry P. Condon in the October issue of Ophthalmology Times, it states that “SLT is effective and safe as a primary treatment for patients with ocular hypertension and open-angle glaucoma.” In one study the SLT therapy resulted in an inter-occular pressure reduction that was equivalent to taking Xalatan (a regular glaucoma drop).  This method of treatment works as well as the strongest anti-glaucoma medication and compliance is not an issue.

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