Hydrogel could pave new way for glaucoma treatment without surgery or drugs


To find a simple, practicable treatment for glaucoma has been an endeavor of medical practitioners, experts since a long time. Consequent to one such effort, a potential new treatment for glaucoma developed that involves administering injection twice-a-year to control the buildup of pressure in the eye. This treatment displays the potential to replace daily eye drops and surgery. Furthermore, researchers envision the new treatment to be simple to be administered as part of regular patient visits.

Interestingly, the treatment which could possibly be the first non-surgical, non-drug, long-working therapy for glaucoma uses natural and biodegradable material to form a viscous hydrogel. This hydrogel opens an alternate route for excess fluid to exit the eye.

“Meanwhile, for glaucoma, an efficient way to lower the pressure in the eye is sought. The one that does not rely on patients putting drops in their eyes every day, does not require complicated surgery, has a good safety profile, has minimal side effects,” said one of the researchers. So much so, the technique is looked upon to be a game-changer for the treatment of glaucoma.

New treatment easier, feasible over currently used ones

Factually, as much as 75 million people world over suffer from glaucoma. Glaucoma is characterized by excess pressure in the eye that causes injury to the optic nerve. Current treatments for glaucoma attempt to reduce this intraocular pressure by means of daily use of eye drops, through surgery, or implant of medical devices. These treatments, however, are unsuccessful.

In a bid to find a dependable treatment for glaucoma, teaming of medical researchers led to the devise of a new technique. This involved use of needle to administer a polymer preparation into a structure just beneath the surface of the eye called suprachoroidal space.

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