Glaucoma Microsurgery with iStent
The iStent Trabecular Microbypass Stent is the smallest medical device approved by the
Food and Drugs Administration (FDA), which can be implanted inside the human body. It is
a minimally invasive glaucoma surgery (MIGS) device that was first published in 2007.
Glaucoma, a group of eye conditions that damage the nerves that carry information to the
brain from the eyes, is the leading cause of irreversible blindness in the world, with more than
65 million in different countries affected. However, most glaucoma treatment procedures we
have today have high levels of complications and failures. But with the arrival of the iStent,
which is a result of continuous research for a more effective and safer option for treating glaucoma, patients now have access to an improved treatment procedure. Today, iStent is one of the most effective and safest devices available for managing patients that have mild to moderate glaucoma.
How does iStent Trabecular Micorbypass Stent work?
The iStent, which is just 1 mm in length, is a nonferromagnetic titanium stent, coated with
heparin, and is shaped like a ridged snorkel. It is 20,000 times smaller when compared to the
intraocular lens (IOL) that is used to treat cataracts. However, it’s not just the tiny size that is
so revolutionary about this device; it also has the ability to reduce intraocular pressure,
meaning the pressure within your eye, while being minimally invasive.
One of the causes of glaucoma is poor flow through the drainage system in their eyes, and this worsens as time
passes. With the iStent, this can be easily fixed as the stent can create a permanent opening
through the drain so as to improve the natural fluid outflow of the eyes, thus reducing
pressure in your eyes. In fact, research has shown that by having iStent implanted in your
eyes, you can experience an additional 3 to 10 percent reduction in eye pressure over just a
traditional cataract surgery alone.
iStent is implanted in your eyes by a qualified surgeon during a cataract surgery. After
successful implantation, it will start working immediately to effectively lower your eye
pressure. This procedure also appears to be cost-effective in the long run since it can
eliminate the need for further medication in the future. Some patients have their glaucoma
medication reduced in varying quantities. However, this may not be the case for every patient
and will depend solely on your unique condition and the doctor’s discretion.