What is Minimally Invasive glaucoma surgery?
At West County Ophthalmology, we offer our patients who have glaucoma many options for glaucoma surgery, including minimally invasive glaucoma surgery (MIGS). Glaucoma is a vision-threatening condition wherein rising intraocular pressure causes damage to the optic nerve. When left untreated, glaucoma can progress to irreversible vision loss. The key to managing glaucoma effectively is early detection and consistent treatment by a professional ophthalmologist. Glaucoma surgery typically aims to slow the progression of the illness by creating channels for fluid to drain more seamlessly from the eye, which, in turn, can lower the rising intraocular pressure which would otherwise damage the optic nerve. If you have glaucoma, then contact one of our facilities to learn about your glaucoma surgery options, including minimally invasive glaucoma surgery in Chesterfield or O'Fallon, MO.
What Are the Benefits of MIGS?
At West County Ophthalmology, we know a glaucoma diagnosis can be scary. However, with minimally invasive glaucoma surgery, we are proud to offer our patients a noninvasive way to treat this condition. Many of our patients who have received this surgery enjoyed benefits such as:
- Quick, in-office procedure
- Lowers the amount of pressure placed on the eyes
- Preserves vision by preventing or slowing further vision loss
- Protects further damage from occurring to the optic nerve
Am I a candidate for MIGS?
Only a skilled ophthalmologist can identify if an individual is eligible for MIGS or laser therapy. Each type of glaucoma can present various degrees of severity; therefore, each patient requires a specialized procedure plan to control their symptoms. The most suitable candidates for MIGS:
- Are over the age of 18
- Are living with mild to moderate glaucoma
- Haven't been able to manage their symptoms with eye drops
- Have both glaucoma and cataracts
- Are not at an elevated risk for severe progression
How is glaucoma surgery performed?
Minimally invasive glaucoma surgery can be done at the time of cataract surgery and, like most other glaucoma surgeries, can be performed as an outpatient procedure under a local anesthetic. MIGS will often be suggested if medications or daily eye drops have not proven effective or have caused undesirable side effects. To perform this procedure, your ophthalmologist will create an incision in, or implant a small device into, your eye to help create new channels by which fluid can drain.
Recovery time can vary from patient to patient depending on the type of glaucoma surgery they receive. All patients will need to follow up with their physician to ensure that their surgery was successful and that intraocular pressure is decreasing.
Is minimally invasive glaucoma surgery safe?
MIGS is considered a safe procedure when it is performed by an experienced surgeon, like the ones at West County Ophthalmology. While there are risks (as with every procedure), they are fewer than traditional glaucoma procedures. We also utilize state-of-the-art technology and techniques to minimize risk.
How can I prepare for MIGS?
Prior to your MIGS surgery at our O'Fallon or Chesterfield, MO office, you should let our team know if you have chronic dry eye, as this could affect your surgery. You should also bring a list of any medications you take, their dosage, and the reason for taking them.
What can I expect after MIGS?
This glaucoma treatment will reduce intraocular pressure and improve how fluid drains from your eye, both of which will slow down the progression of your glaucoma. For many, this procedure allows them to quit their glaucoma prescription medications.
Hope for glaucoma patients
A glaucoma diagnosis may cause some fear that you will lose your vision and be unable to do many of the things that you now love. However, glaucoma patients who maintain regular appointments with their ophthalmologist and follow their treatment plan can effectively slow the progression of the disease and significantly decrease their odds of total vision loss. If you have been diagnosed with glaucoma, then contact one of our West County Ophthalmology centers to learn more about glaucoma treatment options, including minimally invasive glaucoma surgery.
"Dr. Shields and his assistants are highly professional and thorough. I highly recommend Dr. Shields and completely trust his advice. I also know that he and his partners are available in case of emergencies. "- Anonymous / Healthgrades / Nov 07, 2023
"Dr. Slocum is incredible! I had an eye emergency, and he was called to the ER to help me on a Saturday morning. I was in incredible pain and distress due to a viral eye issue. He got me on the fast track to recovery. His office got in touch with me for a prompt follow up. The office was clean. The staff was professional. And Dr. Slocum is a true life saver. I could not be more grateful to him. I will be a loyal patient to West County Ophthalmology from here out. I know I can count on them for excellent care in ordinary and extraordinary circumstances."- T.B. / Google / Oct 27, 2023
"I had to see doctor Whitney Brothers on an emergency visit. She immediately put me in ease, sensing my anxiety over what my emergency was about. She talked to me the entire time. Relaying everything that she found as she found it. She diagnosed the issue, outcome and treatment plan, reiterating what I should do for ANY change in my status. Most of all, she saw me as a human that was scared and she alleviated all my fears. God bless you."- M.S. / Healthgrades / Aug 31, 2023
"Great practice, fantastic people, and a very modern optical. Never a bad experience."- J.T. / Google / Jul 11, 2023
"Took my daughter in for issues she was having. I was so grateful she was able to be seen by an ophthalmologist. They were also able to update her contacts and glasses during the same visit. Best of all, they were able to put new lenses in her old, favorite frames. Everyone was very helpful and professional. Thank you for great healthcare!!"- K.L. / Google / Jun 27, 2023