Filtration surgery glaucoma

Filtration Surgery (Glaucoma)

Filtration surgery is performed to treat open angle glaucoma. It is also known as ‘trabeculectomy’. Glaucoma is termed as the diseases which affect the optic nerve and if left untreated, can lead to blindness.

Glaucoma is usually characterized by the increased IOP or intraocular pressure of the eye. The procedure is performed as a measure to avoid loss of vision, by lowering the intraocular pressure. Surgery cannot reverse or improve vision loss.

Why it is needed

  • Filtration surgery is performed medication fails to reduce IOP, and surgery helps in prevention of further damage to the optic nerve


  • In early stage, glaucoma has no signs and symptoms


Symptoms in later stage are

  • Loss of peripheral vision
  • Inability or difficulty to adjust the vision in darkened rooms, and focusing too close on work
  • Headache
  • Seeing halos or rainbow colored rings around lights

If a person experiences the above symptoms, it means that irreversible and severe damage has happened already to the eyes.


Facts and Figures

  • According to WHO, Glaucoma is the second leading cause of blindness. Around 10% people loss their sight even after treatment
  • An estimated 3.7 million people are affected globally by Glaucoma. In US, 1-2% population suffer from Glaucoma
  • Early diagnosis is the only option right now, as there is no cure for Glaucoma
  • About 2% of population aged between 40-50 and 8% above 70 have elevated IOP


  • Filtration surgery prevents vision loss as it reduces IOP
  • Helps to prevent further eye damage and maintain vision
  • Surgery takes only one hour
  • Medical tourist can return home after 3-4 days of surgery



  • Surgery may be repeated
  • It may give desired results or is not advised for patients with congenital glaucoma, diabetics and patients with past eye surgery


Risks and Complications

  • Severe blurring
  • Scarring of opening
  • Bleeding in eye
  • Cataract
  • Vision loss
  • Low eye pressure
  • Infection
  • Droopy eyelid


Pre-operative Preparation

  • Full eye exam
  • Get list of allowed medicines. Inform about previous eye surgery or treatment
  • Inform about allergies, smoking, alcohol habits
  • Put drops in eye prescribed by surgeon for 2 days before procedure
  • Arrange leave
  • Arrange caregiver for home and driving
  • Medical tourist should select hotel room near clinic/hospital

Post-operative care

  • Surgery success depends on conjuctival healing, so surgeon instructions must be followed strictly after the surgery
  • Eye is taped shut and covered after surgery. This bandage is opened after 24 hours


Do’s, Don’ts and Precautions

  • Do be regular in taking medicines prescribed by the surgeon
  • Do wear the eye shield for 30 days (i.e. one month)
  • Don’t do strenuous work for 48 hours after surgery
  • Do resume light activity 48 hours after procedure
  • Avoid pools and hot tubs
  • Don’t use eye makeup upto two weeks
  • Don’t sneeze or cough forcefully, as it might hamper in healing