These are some common treatments for retinal diseases and disorders.
The most common cause of blindness in people 50 years and over, there are actually two types of age-related macular degeneration (AMD). Unfortunately, there is no treatment for dry macular degeneration (however, there are clinical trials underway).
Lifestyle management, such as diets and supplements, may slow progression, so discuss this with your eye doctor. There are a number of treatments for wet macular degeneration (although no cure), including Anti-VEGF injections, retinal laser treatment and photodynamic therapy (PDT).
Although open-angle glaucoma can’t be cured, it can be controlled. For most people, regular use of glaucoma eye drops will lower the intraocular pressure (IOP) and slow the progression of the disease. Other treatments include laser treatment of the eye’s drainage system, the trabecular meshwork– this is performed in a consulting room. For closed-angle glaucoma, laser treatment of the iris will most likely be performed before any medication is given. Some cases will also require a surgical procedure called trabeculoplasty.
Also known as corneal grafting, a corneal transplant is a surgical procedure which replaces a damaged or diseased cornea with a donor cornea. Performed by a corneal surgeon, it can be carried out under local or general anaesthesia, combined with sedation. If the rest of the eye is healthy, the outlook for recovery is good.
Oculoplastic surgery is any surgical procedure around the eye socket, eyelid, tear ducts and the face. It includes reconstruction of the eye and surrounding structures. It is used to treat a range of problems including removal of melanomas or tumours, droopy eyelids and blocked tear ducts. Oculoplastics also covers more serious surgery including the removal of an eye and replacing it with an artificial eye.
A vitrectomy is the removal of some or all of the fluid (vitreous humour) from the eye. It’s a procedure used to treat a number of disorders, including retinal detachment, floaters, epiretinal membrane (also called macular pucker), macular holes and diabetic retinopathy.
A painless procedure performed in day surgery under local anaesthetic, the fluid is then replaced with air or gas. How quickly and to what extent vision improves depends on the reason the surgery was performed – however, the return of 20/20 eyesight is possible if the eye is generally healthy.
This is a surgical procedure where the eyelids are partially sewn together to narrow the opening. This protects the cornea until healing is complete. It is often performed on patients with corneal exposure or abrasions.
There are a number of treatments for retinal conditions that use laser technology. It uses a very high energy light that is focussed on the retina. There are two basic types of retinal laser treatment – focal laser is used when treating macular oedema, and scatter laser (or pan-retinal photocoagulation) used to stop the growth of abnormal blood vessels). This is a painless procedure performed in clinic by a retinal ophthalmologist.