Information for the public

This procedure can be used for glaucoma because it works well and there are no serious concerns about its safety in this condition.

Glaucoma causes fluid to build up in the eye, which increases pressure in the eye. This damages the optic nerve, which connects the eye to the brain, and can lead to permanent sight loss. In this procedure, a small flap is cut in the white of the eye (a trabeculectomy) and sewn up with loose stitches. A tiny patch (collagen matrix) is put over the flap to help healing and prevent scarring. Fluid slowly drains out of the flap, and the patch dissolves over time (biodegradable). The aim is to reduce pressure in the eye and slow or stop damage to sight.

The NHS website may have information on your condition and treatment options.

You can search the NHS website for information about consultants and hospitals that offer this procedure.

Is this procedure right for me?

You should be included in making decisions about your care.

Your healthcare professionals should explain the risks and benefits of this procedure and how it is done. They should discuss your options and listen carefully to your views and concerns. They should offer you more information about the procedure. Your family or carers can be involved if you want or need them to be.

You will be asked to decide whether you agree (consent) to have the procedure. Find out more about giving consent to treatment on the NHS website.

Some questions to think about

  • How many appointments will I need?
  • What are the possible benefits? How likely am I to get them?
  • What are the risks or side effects? How likely are they?
  • Will I have to stay in hospital?
  • What happens if it does not work or something goes wrong?
  • What happens if I do not want the procedure?
  • Are other treatments available?

Information and support

You can get support from your local Healthwatch.

ISBN: 978-1-4731-4969-4

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