Glaucoma is a disease that damages your eye’s optic nerve. It usually happens when fluid builds up in the front part of your eye. That extra fluid increases the pressure in your eye, damaging the optic nerve. Glaucoma is a leading cause of blindness for people over 60 years old. But blindness from glaucoma can often be prevented with early treatment.
What to Expect After Glaucoma Surgery?
The glaucoma surgery recovery process is often described as only involving mild discomfort. Yet, your personal health and the type of surgery you have can affect your recovery time.
Both filtration surgery and glaucoma laser surgery recovery periods have similar timeframes. You can expect about a month for a full recovery.
Quicker recovery periods last about 3 weeks. While a more involved recovery may take up to 6 weeks time. Here are the 5 main things to expect during your post-op recovery process.
- Blurred Vision and Minor Discomfort
It’s common for your vision to become blurred after the procedure. This may cause poor eyesight that can last a few days or up to 6 weeks.
- No Operating a Vehicle
Driving is not recommended while recovering from glaucoma surgery. It’s also important to have someone drive you home after surgery. This also includes having a driver for any follow-up appointments with your doctor.
- Rest and Relaxation
During recovery, it is best to take enough time to relax and heal. This means avoiding strenuous exercise and any heavy lifting.
- Follow Doctor’s Orders
With any surgery, a successful recovery all depends on proper post-op care. After surgery, your doctor will have you wear a bandage or padding to protect the eyes. Be sure to keep this in place until your doctor tells you otherwise.
Eye drops will likely get recommended by your doctor. These contain anti-inflammatory and antibiotic properties. It’s important to take these as needed to ensure a successful recovery.
- Proper Care and Maintenance
It is important not to rub or touch your eyes if you feel any discomfort after surgery. Doing this can cause severe damage to the eye. You should also wash your hands with soap and warm water before using eye drops. Your doctor will also let you know when you are able to shower and clean your face.
Risks Associated with Glaucoma Surgery
Short-term vision loss.
- Bleeding inside the eye (very rare).
- Fluid pockets behind the retina due to pressure being too low.
- Low eye pressure (hypotony).
- Scarring in and around the eye, leading to vision loss.
It is important to know that these side effects are not common. If your eye doctor decides you need surgery, the benefits outweigh the risks.