YAG laser peripheral iridotomy (PI) for glaucoma
A YAG laser peripheral iridotomy (PI) is performed almost exclusively for patients with narrow angles, narrow-angle glaucoma, or acute angle closure glaucoma.
Aqueous fluid is made in the ciliary body of the eye, which is situated behind the iris. The aqueous fluid primarily escapes the eye by flowing between the lens and iris of the eye and then drains via the trabecular meshwork, which is located in the angle of the eye (where the front clear cornea meets the iris). If the flow of aqueous fluid to the drainage angle is obstructed by a forwardly bowed iris, the patient is said to have narrow angles.
YAG PI involves creating a tiny opening in the peripheral iris, allowing aqueous fluid to flow from behind the iris directly to the anterior chamber of the eye. This typically allows an opening up of the angle of the eye. The narrow or closed-angle thus becomes an open angle.
What is YAG laser peripheral iridotomy (PI)
It is a simple, commonly performed procedure that is very safe. The full name of this treatment is :YAG (neodymium-doped yttrium aluminium garnet) laser peripheral iridotomy.
What happens during YAG laser peripheral iridotomy (PI)
The procedure itself is completed with the patient seated at the laser and requires no sedation. Topical anaesthesia eye drops are instilled, a lens is placed on the eye to better control the laser beam.
In general, only a few very brief episodes of slight discomfort are associated with this procedure. However, generally, there is no pain involved post-operatively. The entire procedure takes only a few minutes.