On Tuesday, September 27, 2016, Cheryl Harp became the first of 11 patients in the United States to undergo what is being described as a “new breakthrough glaucoma surgery.” The new procedure, called CyPass Micro-Stent, was approved by the Food and Drug Administration in July, and performed by Dr. Steven Vold of Vold Vision, PLLC in Fayetteville, Arkansas for the first time ever this September. The biggest advantage of this new procedure: recovery time. Compared to the standard glaucoma procedure, which has a recovery time of roughly three months, this new surgery has a recovery time of just a few days.
“It is like Lasik for glaucoma,” explains Dr. Vold. “With Lasik, literally in an hour or two [a patient] can be seeing 20/20. Well now, we can bring a glaucoma procedure that can do that.”
Patients can even stop using their eye drops.
“We can intervene much earlier in mild to moderate glaucoma, get you off your medications and that’s a big deal a lot of these medicines are a thousand dollars a month,” says Dr. Vold.
The surgery will be available nationwide in January 2017.
“The CyPass micro-stent represents the next wave of innovation in the MIGS (Microinvasive Glaucoma Surgery) category,” says Dr. Vold. “The CyPass micro-stent is positioned to provide a valuable new therapeutic option for ophthalmologists.”
Glaucoma is currently the second leading cause of blindness globally, affecting 60 million people worldwide and 3 million Americans. Glaucoma is the result of increased intraocular pressure (IOP) and damage to the optic nerve, the nerve that carries visual information from the eye to the brain. Eye pressure is measured in millimeters of mercury (mm Hg), and normal eye pressure falls between 12 and 21 mm Hg. Anything above 21 is considered elevated. The higher the eye pressure, the greater the risk for developing glaucoma.
At first, glaucoma affects side or peripheral vision, which means a person can lose as much as 40% of his or her vision before even noticing a change. This is why glaucoma has been nicknamed the “silent thief of sight” or the “sneak thief of sight.”
Glaucoma Treatment in Annapolis, Maryland
The Anne Arundel Eye Center (AAEC) is a regional leader in the diagnosis and treatment of glaucoma and cataracts. A consultation with board certified ophthalmologist Dr. Samuel Boles will help guide you through the treatment process and help you determine the best course of action.
Staffed by caring and knowledgeable professionals, AAEC’s state-of-the-art treatment center is dedicated to making the best eye care accessible to everyone.
If you have any questions, please contact Dr. Samuel Boles, Dr. Nicole Kershner Regis, Dr. Kathryn Turner, and the eye care specialists here at AAEC by calling 410-224-2010. AAEC is staffed by caring and knowledgeable professionals who will help guide you on your healing journey.