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What is selective laser trabeculoplasty for glaucoma?

Laura C. Fine, MD
Ophthalmology
A procedure called selective laser trabeculoplasty (SLT), approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), offers an alternative to argon laser trabeculoplasty (ALT) for open-angle glaucoma -- the most common form of glaucoma (a group of eye diseases that cause vision loss through damage to the optic nerve). The procedure uses a neodymium: yttrium-aluminum-garnet (YAG) laser, which is thought to preserve the normal architecture of the trabecular meshwork more than a regular argon laser. Studies have shown that SLT is equal in effectiveness to ALT and may potentially be repeated several times. For now, this technology is considered an alternative to traditional argon laser trabeculoplasty, or may be used as a second procedure for those who've been treated already with argon laser trabeculoplasty.

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