Millions of Americans are affected by glaucoma each and every year. After the age of 40, almost 2.2 million people will develop glaucoma. The National Institute of Health indicates that African-Americans over the age of 40 and all men and women over the age of 60 are at increased risk for this disease, which can cause severe vision impairment or blindness. Though glaucoma can’t be cured – any vision loss that occurs as a result of glaucoma is permanent – it can be treated so that further degradation can be prevented. Having a clear understanding of glaucoma surgery cost can help you make informed decisions. Here at SightMD, we can answer any questions you may have regarding treatment, educate you on surgical and non-surgical treatment options, and conduct a thorough evaluation of your health. If you are an at-risk individual, we encourage you to seek regular treatment, as at first, there are no symptoms associated with glaucoma. To arrange a consultation with a member from our team of eye care specialists, please contact SightMD today.
Glaucoma Surgery Cost – What to Consider
There are numerous considerations to take into account when determining a treatment plan for glaucoma: the degree of degradation, the treatment method used, and medication needs will all factor into overall cost. Because of this, it’s not possible to provide an accurate quote on treatment cost without first evaluating the health of your eyes. After conducting a comprehensive exam of your eyes, we can outline a course of action and determine glaucoma surgery cost. Because there are multiple forms of glaucoma, it’s important for our doctors to complete a thorough comprehensive eye exam. At our Long Island office locations, including Smithtown and Riverhead, we can assist you with insurance, since your plant will likely cover such treatment. Your best interests, not cost, should always dictate which treatment method is utilized. Typically, treatment will consist of one or more of the following:
- Medication – Medicinal eye drops can be prescribed to reduce pressure on the optic nerve and alleviate the symptoms of glaucoma. These medications can reduce the amount of fluid or promote fluid evacuation. For patients that have been diagnosed with open-angle glaucoma, medicinal eye drops are a good treatment option to try first. When medicinal eye drops are prescribed, your doctor will likely prescribe them with oral medications. Taking these medications continuously has been found to protect the optic nerve and prevent further damage to it. If you have early onset glaucoma, eye drops can temporarily halt or severely delay its development. However, medication must be taken continuously in order to act upon the underlying causes of the disease, thus cost can add up quickly.
- Laser Therapy – If medication is unable to address the cause of glaucoma, then laser treatment may be utilized. There are two techniques which could be used. The first is called laser peripheral iridotomy. This technique can help promote drainage of fluid buildup, thus reducing pressure on the ocular nerve. The laser peripheral iridotomy allows the fluids built up in the eye to drain efficiently and properly. The second technique is called valve implantation. During valve implantation, a special kind of tube is laid into the eye. This tube is used to help the eye fluid drain out of the eye. The benefits of laser therapy over conventional surgery are that it’s minimally invasive and can be completed quickly. However, follow-up treatment may be necessary if the effects of the treatment wear off. For patients that have closed-angle glaucoma, more aggressive treatment options like laser therapy are often the best option.
- Glaucoma Surgery – Only severe cases of glaucoma are treated surgically. In this procedure, a new opening is created to help drain extra fluid and reduce pressure on the optic nerve. Depending on the kind of glaucoma a patient has been diagnosed with, there are different kinds of glaucoma surgery that will be recommended. Recovery for surgery takes longer than it does for laser therapy. Typically, recovery can take several weeks, and anti-inflammatory eye drops must be used during this time to promote healing and prevent infection. However, the technique is up to 80 percent effective at reducing pressure, making it highly beneficial. Although there is no cure for glaucoma, with proper treatment options, your vision can be preserved through early detection!
The cost of glaucoma treatment can vary greatly but at SightMD, we make an effort to help our patients with concerns or questions regarding glaucoma surgery cost. We can discuss insurance options, financing, and other matters related to treatment. Your sight is invaluable, and we believe that everyone should be able to enjoy the gift of sight. Please contact our eye care center today to schedule a consultation.