SLT - A New Glaucoma Treatment

Advanced Laser Treatment for Chronic Open-Angle Glaucoma

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Open angle glaucoma progresses slowly. There is no associated pain or other noticeable symptoms until much of the outside area of the field of vision is lost.


A clear fluid, called aqueous humor, fills the front of the eye (anterior chamber) and provides nourishment to the tissues. Like the air in a balloon, the aqueous also provides pressure to help maintain the shape of the eye.


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Open Angle Glaucoma (OAG), the most common type of glaucoma, occurs when there is either a sustained increase in fluid production in the eye or a decrease in fluid drainage. With this imbalance in fluid flow, there is an increase in the intraocular pressure, which in turn reduces blood flow to the sensitive tissues of the optic nerve. Over time, as the optic nerve fibers are destroyed, peripheral (side) vision is lost.


Selective Laser Trabeculoplasty (SLT)

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Selective Laser Trabeculoplasty (SLT) is an advanced type of laser treatment to manage patients with open-angle glaucoma. Instead of generally burning tissue as in Argon Laser Trabeculoplasty (ALT), SLT selectively stimulates or changes only specific pigmented cells to activate increased fluid drainage. Both SLT and ALT produce equivalent drops in IOP, however the more gentle SLT procedure does not have the associated damage to other tissues and adverse scarring effects. For this reason, where ALT is limited, SLT may potentially be repeated. SLT has also been found to be effective when ALT and other forms of medical treatment have failed.


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With SLT, selective targeting of pigmented cells (the orange cells above) located in the trabecular meshwork stimulates an increase in the drainage of aqueous humor to control glaucoma.


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SLT Laser energy is only absorbed by specific pigmented cells.


Benefits of SLT

  • SLT results in a biological response that increases aqueous drainage, and reduces intraocular pressure without burning tissue.
  • No adverse reactions from medications.
  • No adverse scarring of Trabecular Meshwork.
  • May reduce the need for lifelong use of expensive eye drops and other medications.
  • May reduce or eliminate the trouble of always having to take glaucoma medications.