What Are the Options for YAG Laser Capsulotomy?


Quick Answer

In patients who have clouding of the lens capsule following cataract surgery, a very common option for correcting this problem is a procedure called Nd:YAG laser capsulotomy, notes WebMD.com. Clouding of the lens capsule, which is called posterior capsule opacification, can occur in nearly 20 percent of patients who undergo cataract surgery, states AllAboutVision.com. This problem can develop during recovery from cataract surgery or at a later date.

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Full Answer

The problem occurs when lens epithelial cells grow and cover the lens capsule. This can lead to symptoms, such as double vision, a decrease in vision and experiencing glare from light. To treat posterior capsule opacification, the neodymium-doped yttrium aluminum garnet (Nd:YAG) laser capsulotomy procedure is useful. This specific type of laser treatment was developed in the 1980s, as noted by eMedicine's Medscape.

This is a noninvasive laser treatment performed by an eye specialist as an outpatient procedure. The treatment involves dilating the eyes, the application of anesthetic eye drops and the use of the Nd:YAG laser to remove the opacity from the lens capsule, as noted by AllAboutVision.com. After the procedure, patients can require anti-inflammatory drops.

Although this laser procedure is safe and painless, there can be some risks associated with it, including macular or corneal edema. Similarly, there are contraindications, such as the procedure may not be suitable for a patient who already has macular edema, iritis or corneal scarring.

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