Options in pediatric glaucoma after angle surgery has failed

Suzana A. Tanimoto, James D Brandt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

61 Scopus citations


Purpose of review: Congenital glaucoma is primarily a surgical disease with medical management serving as a temporizing measure before surgery or as postoperative adjunctive treatment. First-line surgery for congenital glaucoma consists of incisional procedures on the anterior chamber angle: goniotomy and trabeculotomy. Angle surgery has a high success rate with few complications. Despite the high initial success rate, almost 20% of angle procedures eventually fail, and surgeons are confronted with a choice of what procedure to do next: a trabeculectomy with or without adjunctive antifibrosis therapy, glaucoma drainage surgery, or cyclodestructive procedures. This review will discuss and compare these procedures as reported in recent studies and how variables such as age, number of prior procedures, and type of glaucoma have clarified the order in which these procedures might be performed after failed angle surgery. Recent findings: Clinical reports in refractory pediatric glaucoma consist solely of retrospective studies of varying size and quality. Recent studies of trabeculectomy in this population suggest mitomycin C is associated with increased risk of late infectious complications. Trabeculectomy has worse outcome among younger patients Glaucoma drainage devices have a success rate approaching 80% at 1 year, but less with longer follow-up. Cyclodestructive procedures are generally reserved for advanced cases, but low-dose cyclodiode therapy and endocyclophotocoagulation may prove useful earlier in the disease (< 2 years). Summary: Refractory pediatric glaucoma remains a challenge. Glaucoma drainage devices appear to be the most predictable and possibly safest procedure to consider after failed conventional angle surgery.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)132-137
Number of pages6
JournalCurrent Opinion in Ophthalmology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2006


  • Complications
  • Cyclophotocoagulation
  • Drainage devices
  • Glaucoma
  • Outcomes
  • Pediatric glaucoma
  • Surgery
  • Trabeculectomy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology


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