Purpose of review
Outflow procedures for glaucoma surgery have remained popular in the last decade, including trabeculectomy, glaucoma drainage devices, and deep sclerectomy/viscocanalostomy. In the last few years, the surgical armamentarium for glaucoma has vastly increased. Surgeons are using more procedures aimed at creating bleb-free surgery. Schlemm's canal surgery is experiencing a renaissance. This article concentrates on three of the more commonly performed canal procedures: trabeculotomy ab interno (Trabectome), Canaloplasty, and trabeculotomy ab externo.
Trabeculotomy ab interno performed with the Trabectome has been shown to lower intraocular pressure (IOP) almost 40% by 12 months with minimal complications. Trabectome alone, as well as combined with cataract surgery, appears to lower IOP quite well. Canaloplasty has also been shown to lower IOP by 38% and combined with cataract surgery, IOP was lowered 44% at 24 months. Trabeculotomy lowers IOP well, especially in older adults. Phacotrabeculotomy lowers IOP to 21 mmHg or less in 84% of patients with supplemental use of medications, and in 36% of patients without at 3 years.
Canal surgery has proven to be an alternative to traditional glaucoma surgery, lowering IOP relatively well. Surgeons must be comfortable with the anatomy and proceed with the procedure in eyes that are amenable to various new surgical advances.