Paediatric (Childhood) Glaucoma – Get Your Child Seen

When a child suffers problems with eyesight due to optical problems, then the condition is known as Paediatric Glaucoma. The child may suffer from this condition due to various reasons. But a majority of the cases of Paediatric Glaucoma are due to the buildup of drainage fluid that increases the intraocular pressure (of pressure behind the eye)

This problem can lead to a weakening of the eyesight. If left untreated long term, it can also lead to complete blindness. Hence it is essential to conduct a check-up immediately if your child complains about discomfort in the eye.

The treatment for Pediatric Glaucoma varies depending on one of the 4 types of glaucoma described below –

1) Congenital Glaucoma: This is the most commonly occurring type of Paediatric Glaucoma. This condition happens when a newborn is diagnosed with glaucoma. An eye specialist may recommend one of the below courses of treatment to rectify this type of Pediatric Glaucoma:

  • Goniotomy/Trabeculotomy
  • Trabeculectomy
  • Glaucoma Drainage Device Procedures
  • Micropulse Cyclophotocoagulation

Doctors term Goniotomy and Trabeculotomy as angle surgeries. Many cases receive this form of treatment as the preferred option for Congenital Glaucoma over other types of treatment choices and are mostly recommended as the first choice treatment. .

The surgeon will make an incision to ensure proper drainage of aqueous humor or the optical fluid.

You may ask what is the difference between Goniotomy and Trabeculotomy.

Goniotomy is recommended for children that have clear corneas. On the other hand, surgeons perform Trabeculotomy for children with corneal haze. This type of treatment is effective in cases where the cornea is unclear. Alternatively, it may be recommended when the angle surgeries haven’t been as impactful as expected.

Nowadays, surgeons also go for a third possible procedure -Glaucoma Drainage Device. This procedure offers the same effect as the previous two treatments discussed.

Now, if all three prove to be ineffective, then the eye specialist may recommend going for Micropulse Cyclophotocoagulation – This procedure strives to bring down the intraocular pressure by decreasing the amount of fluid produced in the child’s eyes.

2) Infantile Glaucoma: If a child under two years develops symptoms of glaucoma, then this is termed infantile glaucoma. An eye specialist may recommend the same course of treatment for infantile glaucoma as they do for congenital glaucoma.

3) Secondary to Cataract Removal: This treatment option is applicable post congenital cataract surgery. This happens because of increased incidence and onset of Glaucoma within the first 5 years after cataract surgery in children. Usually Glaucoma drainage devices rectifies the problems of this type of glaucoma.

4) Juvenile Glaucoma: Now we come to the fourth and last type of pediatric glaucoma. It is known as Juvenile Glaucoma and its onset occurs when the child is aged 3 years or above. Its symptoms and treatment are the same as the other glaucoma types.
But there is one key difference here. This type of paediatric glaucomais incredibly rare and hardly shows any visible symptoms. It afflicts children who have family members already suffering from glaucoma in the past.

The preferred treatment option for Juvenile Glaucoma is Trabeculectomy or Glaucoma Drainage Device Surgery, including minimally invasive approaches. Additionally, The eye specialist may prescribe other medication drugs to treat this condition.

Many experts segregate glaucoma into primary and secondary glaucoma. Primary is when glaucoma occurs from an unknown cause. On the other hand, secondary glaucoma happens due to another disease or a complication of eye surgery.

Why book an appointment with us?

You may need a reliable and experienced eye specialist to look after causes, symptoms, and treatment of paediatric glaucoma.