Colchester Eye Centre
Colchester Primary Care Centre
Tel: 01206 487 106
OMNI glaucoma treatment
A procedure to lower eye pressure
This leaflet aims to help you understand the OMNI glaucoma treatment, which is one way of managing your glaucoma.
Open angle glaucoma and intraocular pressure
Your eyes produce a liquid called aqueous humour, which is essential for healthy eyes. Often in glaucoma, this liquid does not flow out of the eye properly and the pressure in your eye increases. This increased pressure can damage your optic nerve.
When you come to clinic, we measure your eye pressure. This is important because most people with open angle glaucoma have no early symptoms or eye pain. If left untreated, over time it may result in permanent vision loss and blindness.
The OMNI glaucoma treatment
The OMNI glaucoma treatment is a safe and minimally invasive surgery that helps reduce the eye pressure within the eye by opening up and restoring the flow through the eye’s natural draining pathway.
The operation is done alongside cataract surgery.
It involves a specially designed micro-catheter, inserted into the natural drainage system of the eye, to enlarge it and allow more fluid to drain safely into the venous system and get absorbed into the blood circulation. There is no remaining implant left inside the eye.
How does the OMNI glaucoma treatment reduce eye pressure?
Glaucoma is the result of damage to the optic nerve. The damage is usually due to an increase in eye pressure caused by a blockage in the eye’s natural drainage canals. The blockage is like a clog in the kitchen sink. When fluid is not able to drain properly, it builds up.
The OMNI glaucoma treatment helps the eye doctor ‘unclog the sink’, or relieve pressure build-up in the eye, by removing unnecessary blockages across several pressure points in the eye.
What should I expect during and after the procedure?
OMNI glaucoma treatment is an operation that can be done at the same time as cataract surgery but can be done on its own if you have already had cataract surgery.
A cataract is clouding of the lens in the eye that affects vision. Most cataracts are age related. Symptoms of cataracts may include clouding or blurry vision, colours that seem faded, difficulty
with glare such as sunlight and oncoming headlights, and the need for more frequent changes of glasses.
Cataract surgery involves the removal of the cloudy natural lens and replacement with an artificial (intraocular) lens.
Before the operation, your eyes will be examined. Measurements of your eye and eye pressure will determine which type of artificial lens is best for you. Depending on which medications you are taking, you may be asked to stop taking them for a few days before your operation or you may be asked to start new medication.
During your operation
You will have a local anaesthetic in your eye so you will be awake during the operation. You will not be able to see what is happening but you may be aware of a bright light. During the operation, you will be asked to keep your head still and lie as flat as possible.
The surgeon makes a very small cut in the eye, softens the lens with sound waves and removes it through a small tube. The back layer of the lens capsule is left behind. The artificial implant is inserted
to replace the cataract. Immediately after the cataract portion of the surgery is completed the OMNI glaucoma treatment is done. The whole operation takes approximately 30–45 minutes if done with cataract surgery or 20 minutes on its own as a standalone procedure.
What are the possible side effects?
Microscopic equipment is used in this operation, generally making it safer and less invasive than traditional glaucoma surgery. The most common side effects of the procedure may include temporary rise in eye pressure as the eye begins to heal and a small amount of bleeding inside the eye, which usually recovers within a few weeks if it happens.
How quickly does the procedure start to work?
The procedure restores the eye’s natural drainage system, allowing most patients to experience a drop in eye pressure immediately after the procedure. In some cases, the pressure in the eye takes a while to return to normal after surgery. Every patient is different and you will need regular check-ups with the doctor to decide if your eye drops will be reduced or stopped.
You will need to use eye drops to help your eye heal and you will be given instructions on how to use them. You may need some antibiotics to prevent infection. You will be seen in the eye clinic within a month after your surgery to check your eye pressure, which may change during the first several days after surgery. Sometimes a pressure check on day one may be required.
- No rubbing or pressing on the eye after the operation. As this can happen when you are sleeping, we will ask you to continue wearing the plastic shield at night for a few weeks
- Reading, watching television and using the computer are fine
- Do not drive until the doctor tells you it is safe to do so
- Most people need 1–2 weeks off work after the operation
- To reduce the risk of infection, keep the eye dry for two weeks
- Please wear goggles when swimming
- It is safe to fly after the operation
If you have any problems such as reduced vision, painful red eye or discharge after your operation please ring the Eye Clinic for advice and support.
- Monday to Friday, 9am–5pm, telephone 01206 487 106
- Out of hours (weekdays 5–7pm; weekends and bank holidays 11am–4pm), telephone 01206 286 882, or contact your GP, or go to the Urgent Treatment Centre or Emergency Department at Colchester Hospital
- In an emergency call NHS 111 or go to an Urgent Treatment Centre or your nearest Emergency Department
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