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What is Glaucoma?
Glaucoma is a disease of the optic nerve which, if untreated, can result in permanent damage to the field of vision.
To learn more about the different types of glaucoma, please visit the Glaucoma page in our Ophthalmology Library.
Detection and Treatment
In most cases, glaucoma is treated by lowering the intraocular pressure (pressure inside of the eye). Because glaucoma may not affect the central vision until late in the disease process, it has been called the sneak thief of vision. Those at risk for glaucoma include anyone with a family history of glaucoma, those with myopia (near-sightedness), the elderly, and African Americans. The only way to be sure that you are unaffected by glaucoma is to undergo a comprehensive eye examination.
The physicians of Weill Cornell Medicine Ophthalmology are available for comprehensive ophthalmic care (including glaucoma screening) and can additionally provide expert medical and surgical glaucoma care.
Minimally Invasive Glaucoma Surgery (MIGS)
Minimally invasive glaucoma surgery is now being offered at Weill-Cornell/New York Presbyterian Hospital and Weill Cornell Medicine Ophthalmology.
For patients with glaucoma, elevated intraocular pressure can, over time, result in vision loss. Fortunately, for many patients with glaucoma, the daily use of eyedrops will slow or stop the disease. Traditional glaucoma surgeries including trabeculectomy and tube shunt procedures are typically reserved for patients who are at risk of severe vision loss from glaucoma.
However, the daily administration of eye drops can lead to side effects in some patients, and many glaucoma patients would prefer not to take eye drops.
Recently a new type of glaucoma surgery called minimally invasive glaucoma surgery (MIGS) has become available for glaucoma patients. These MIGS procedures are typically performed at the time of cataract surgery and increase the length of the cataract surgery by just a small amount. Importantly, MIGS procedures do not significantly change the overall (favorable) safety profile of cataract surgery, but can result in additional benefits to patients with glaucoma, including lower intraocular pressure and the need for fewer (or no) glaucoma medications.
While MIGS are not indicated or appropriate for every glaucoma patient, these safer surgeries are a welcomed new treatment option for our glaucoma patients. The glaucoma specialists at Weill Cornell Medicine Ophthalmology currently perform MIGS procedures, including the recently FDA-approved iStent.
Why Choose Weill Cornell Medicine Ophthalmology?
The physicians of Weill Cornell Medicine Ophthalmology are trained in the most state of the art evaluation and treatment methods for patients with glaucoma. Through the use of advanced imaging technology in the hands of experienced professionals, our goal is to diagnose glaucoma as early as possible and to arrest the disease in its earliest stage. Although glaucoma surgery is avoided whenever possible, our doctors are experienced in the most sophisticated surgical techniques for the treatment of glaucoma and will provide the best care possible.
To schedule an appointment or arrange an evaluation, please contact our offices at (646) 962-2020 or visit http://www.weillcornelleye.org.