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Introduction: Selective laser trabeculoplasty (SLT) has been demonstrated to lower intraocular pressure (IOP) and reduce the number of topical medications used in patients with primary open-angle glaucoma (POAG).
Purpose: The purpose of our study was to investigate the sustainability and efficacy of SLT in treating POAG at one year following laser. To our knowledge, this is one of the first studies to be published based on local data in Malaysia.
Study design: This was a retrospective study conducted in a specialist eye clinic, Hospital Kuala Lumpur, from July 2017 until January 2019. Data was collected from the medical notes of the patients.
Materials and methods: The study recruited cases of POAG patients who were using topical antiglaucoma medications. Inclusion criteria were patients with unilateral or bilateral POAG aged 50 years and above. Exclusion criteria were secondary open-angle glaucoma and all forms of angle-closure glaucoma. Patients who had undergone trabeculectomy or glaucoma drainage devices were excluded in our study. A single session of 360° SLT using a Q-switched Nd:YAG laser with an initial energy of 0.8 mJ was performed. IOP and number of antiglaucoma medications were recorded at prestudy, 1 week, 1 month, 3 months, 6 months, and 12 months.
Results: In 17 eyes, mean prestudy IOP was 19.3 ± 3.3 mmHg while on 2.18 ± 0.7 eye drops. At 12 months after SLT, mean IOP was 13.3 ± 3.5 mmHg while on 1.88 ± 0.9 IOP-lowering eye drops. This represented a 31% reduction of IOP compared to prestudy levels. However, the reduction of number of medications was not statistically significant.
Conclusion: A single session of 360° SLT treatment for POAG patients is able to lower IOP by 31% at one year following laser. SLT is a safe and effective procedure for reducing IOP. It may be used as adjuvant therapy, especially in noncompliant patients; patients who have difficulty applying topical eye drops or who are intolerant to topical medication.