Micro-Invasive Glaucoma Surgery with Cataract Surgery
New developments in Micro-Invasive Glaucoma Surgery (MIGS) allow patients to have glaucoma and cataract surgery during one procedure, and most patients with a cataract and open-angle glaucoma are good candidates. Most MIGS procedures avoid eye tissues that are often utilized by traditional surgeries, allowing for future treatment options.
What Happens During MIGS?
The cataract removal and microstent procedure are usually performed under local anesthesia and only take about 15 to 20 minutes per eye. Your surgeon will first perform the phacoemulsification operation to remove the cataract. Using an ultrasonic device, the cloudy lens is broken up and removed, and an artificial intraocular lens (IOL) is inserted. Using the same incision, the titanium microstent will be inserted by a preloaded, single-use, sterile applicator. Your doctor will slowly advance the stent into the trabecular meshwork of your eye and push the button on the inserter to release the device.
This specially designed stent can reduce intraocular pressure (IOP) in adult patients who are currently taking IOP medication for mild or moderate open-angle glaucoma and who have a cataract. The insertion of the stent only adds a few minutes to the cataract surgery. Adding no significant risk to the procedure, the microstent can help greatly in the control of IOP and can reduce the number of medications that you are taking.
What to Expect
Bring a list of your current medications and a brief medical history to your pre-operative appointment, as your surgeon may recommend that you stop taking certain medications about a week before the surgery. MIGS is an outpatient surgery, so you can go home the same day. However, you will need a caregiver to drive you home. Depending on the patient, and if both eyes require treatment, it is common for the second eye surgery to be scheduled for 2-3 weeks later. You will receive antibiotics and anti-inflammatory eye drops to use for the next several weeks after surgery. Recovery time is brief, but your doctor will recommend that you avoid strenuous activities for one week.
Micro-invasive glaucoma surgery with cataract surgery is safe and effective in treating primary open-angle glaucoma and a cataract. The microstent procedure does not noticeably increase the risk of the cataract procedure, and some patients have been able to discontinue glaucoma drops after surgery. If you have a cataract and primary open-angle glaucoma, talk to your doctor about MIGS and cataract surgery.