Argon Laser Trabeculoplasty

At Belmont Eye Center, Sandra Belmont, MD, FACS, performs annual eye exams, including glaucoma testing, to monitor patients’ eye health. If you are diagnosed with glaucoma (a condition in which the eye’s fluid does not drain out of the eye properly, causing extra pressure to build up in the eye), Dr. Belmont will recommend appropriate treatment options, depending on which type of glaucoma you have and how far it has progressed.

If you are diagnosed with early-stage open-angle glaucoma, Dr. Belmont monitors your condition and helps you manage the disease. If your glaucoma has progressed into the more advanced stages, Dr. Belmont may recommend a type of laser eye surgery to help manage your condition.

Traditional Glaucoma Treatment Options

To treat open-angle glaucoma in its earlier stages, Dr. Belmont may prescribe medicine to either slow the production of fluid in the eye or to improve the flow of fluid through the eye’s drainage angle, or channel. Again, laser eye surgery, such as argon laser trabeculoplasty, may be required to treat more advanced stages of open-angle glaucoma. Yet another option is for Dr. Belmont to create a new drainage angle, if needed.

Dr. Belmont typically performs laser iridotomy to treat narrow-angle glaucoma. With this laser eye surgery, Dr. Belmont creates a miniscule opening in the iris, restoring the flow of fluid to the front of the eye. If all other treatment options fail to relieve eye pressure, the Manhattan laser eye surgeon can create a new drainage channel.

More About Argon Laser Trabeculoplasty

Before starting argon laser trabeculoplasty (ALT), an outpatient procedure, topical anesthetic eye drops are administered to numb the eye. Some patients may feel pressure in the eye during the procedure but should not experience any pain.

To start the ALT procedure, Dr. Belmont directs a laser beam at the drainage channel, or the trabecular meshwork. The laser beam opens the drainage channel, helping fluid drain properly from the eye, thereby alleviating the extra intraocular pressure, or the pressure in the eye.

Dr. Belmont typically treats half the drainage channels first, so she can see if treating just those channels is sufficient to allow the fluid to drain properly and thus lower intraocular pressure. If necessary, she can treat the other drainage channels in a separate procedure. At the end of surgery, the surgeon administers medicated eye drops to prevent an initial rise in intraocular pressure following surgery.

In many cases, patients must still use medication to manage their glaucoma after ALT treatment.

Learn More About ALT Treatment for Glaucoma

If you think you may have glaucoma, it is best to schedule an appointment with Dr. Sandra Belmont. During your appointment, the NYC laser eye surgeon examines your eye health and reviews your treatment options with you to help you make an educated decision about the best course of action for your condition.

To schedule a comprehensive consultation with Dr. Belmont or to learn more about your glaucoma treatment options, including ALT treatment, please contact Belmont Eye Center by calling (212) 486-2020.