YAG Laser Iridotomy Complications

Posted by jigglejaws94 @jigglejaws94, Sep 25, 2016

Has anyone had a laser iridotomy with resultant “ghost images” or a crescent of light in field of vision?

Liked by agoldstein

@cherriann

Glad to read your positive experience with the laser procedure – it eased my nerves a bit! I am scheduled for laser on my secondary cataract later this month. It developed quite soon after cataract surgery, and have been a little nervous about having the laser treatment. Thank you lioness, I felt better after reading your post. Have been doing some research about how its done, and sounds quick, uncomplicated and simple – I will find out for myself for sure in a few weeks!

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@cherriann your welcome nothing to worry about The Dr told me it wasn't unusual to get tags left been nd and they just are lasered of I went to lunch right afterwards.

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After surgery I have been seeing halos or ghost shadows ,it has been over one month and we still don’t have a solution as per my Opthmalogy Dr.

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@mac2018

After surgery I have been seeing halos or ghost shadows ,it has been over one month and we still don’t have a solution as per my Opthmalogy Dr.

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Hi @mac2018, welcome. You'll notice that I moved your message to this existing discussion about laser peripheral iridotomy, so that you can meet others who have had this procedure. Click VIEW & REPLY in the email notification to scroll through past messages. Have the ghost shadows since disappeared? How is your vision now?

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@mac2018

After surgery I have been seeing halos or ghost shadows ,it has been over one month and we still don’t have a solution as per my Opthmalogy Dr.

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Unfortunately it happens to some patients. It is called a dysphotopsia. I had bilateral peripheral iridotomies over two years ago and I still have residual crescent of light that I can sometimes see. It is the worst when watching a movie on our big screen TV, when driving in sunlight without sunglasses or when looking directly towards a window that is too bright. I doubt mine will ever change as it has remained essentially the same since fall of 2016. I will say that there have been stretches of time that go by that I don't seem to notice it as much but then later will be bothered again. Sorry to hear that you are experiencing this.

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I am 50 years old and had my cataract surgery one year ago (toric lenses), since then I have been through some horrible stuff. I had Macular Edema in both eyes a short while after my cataract surgeries, but this seems to have cleared up according to my retinal scans and multiple examinations. Once my Macular Edema cleared up in both eyes I had the YAG laser to clear up my posterior capsular opacification. The next morning after my YAG laser, I woke up and I knew something was terrible wrong, In dim light (even indoors with fluorescent lighting), I could see a fuzzy halo around lights and starbursts too. At night time when I am driving, every light ranging from headlights to traffic lights….any light at night, I can see long stretched out spiky starbursts. The brighter the light (like those super bright headlights you see in newer cars), the longer and stretchy the starburst will be. Every once in a while the starburst will also have a rainbow effect to it that is inside the starburst itself. Note: I am seeing the starbursts with or without my glasses, so it wouldn't be residual astigmatism like my doctor thought it might be. I am also seeing bright oddly shaped circle lights every morning right now like when I had my macular edema, when I went to my doctor he did another retinal scan of my eyes but it showed no macular edema. My vitreous gel seems to be a mess also, I can live with floaters, but now it seems like the vitreous gel is clumping together or something, and when I look to the left and right or up and down I see like something hazy and sweeping going the opposite way that I am looking. I asked if my lenses got pitted or damaged or something during my YAG laser treatment but my doctor said no. My doctor had some "copy and paste" explanation for everything (like basically well…just live with it), so I went to see a second doctor (at my HMO hospital), and after her examination she basically said the same thing "well you're seeing 20/20 with glasses" along with her "copy and paste" explanations as well. Not happy with her responses, I asked politely to be referred to the retinal surgeon…she didn't like it that much, and after that her demeanor changed for the worse. So moving forward…I've been researching Dr. Google (doctors hate when I do this, lol), I was thinking that maybe they should widen the YAG treatment area more (maybe it will clear up the starbursts cause I have large pupils), and maybe I should get a vitrectomy (for my clumpy vitreous gel or whatever else it might be that is possibly pulling at my retina causing the circles of light in the morning right when I wake)? I see the retinal surgeon later this month, is there any suggestions you guys might give me that I might bring to the table when I see him? I feel like I am going blind or something. Thank you.

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Hi @michaels777, welcome. You'll notice that I moved your message to this existing discussion about cataract surgery and YAG laser, so that you can meet others who have had this procedure. Click VIEW & REPLY in the email notification to scroll through past messages.

I'd like to invite @jigglejaws94 @mac2018 @lioness and others to help you prepare for your upcoming appointment with the retinal surgeon. I applaud you for doing due diligence and using Google to help inform yourself. You mention that the circles are there in the morning. Do they lessen throughout the day? What about the vitreous gel, does it change throughout the day?

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@michaels777 Welcome Michel to our great group Thank you Colleen for asking me to tell of my experience on YAG .I had cataract surgery ,both eyes done 2weeks apart After surgery it was shortly after that I had a cloudy film on my eyes and had to have it lasered off Dr said there was no prep for this To remove this film took only seconds I had no after affects It is necessary to put your drops in from the cataract surgery I went out to eat after done I did have a friend drive me since I wasn't sure of what to expect

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Good morning. I just wanted to share my experience with the group. I had a laser iridotomy procedure done to both my eyes. My right eye was done last week and my left eye was done yesterday. I first went to my optometrist about 6 months ago due to the fact that I had a weird feeling in my right eye – a feeling like there was fluid building up in my eye and had headaches. The dr said it looked like I had narrow angles and sent me to an Opthamologist. At that appt she said that I do have narrow angles and scheduled me in for a laser iridotomy the following month. I think I was in shock at the appointment and didnt ask all the questions I had. I ended up spending a lot of time online connecting with people who had the procedure and reading so many posts and horror stories about the actual procedure and the possible side effects. There were some positive experiences as well. I was so freaked out that I almost cancelled my appt even though I was still experiencing symptoms. Going online can be scary. I was so scared that entire month before my appt. I did go ahead with the procedure on both eyes. The right eye last week and my left eye yesterday. I would like to let you know my experience. I understand that everyone is different and will experience different things and in no way am I trying to downplay the experiences of others but only want to share my experience to try to help others. Before my appt I did take 2 tylenol as I heard that some people get awful headaches from the drops they use to constrict the pupils. At both appts I did not experience any headaches or pain from the drops. Right before the laser I had the numbing drops put in. Next is the lense thing they put on your eye that has gel on it. It didnt hurt just felt a bit weird. I was told a specific area to look at. All I could see was the gel….no lights or anything. The sound of the laser wasnt loud at all…just a clicking sound. Didnt startle me at all. The right eye took about 8 times and I could feel something only with the last 2 lasers. Wasn't painful at all!!! Felt like I got something in my eye. My experience with the left eye was almost the same except that eye was only lasered 4 times but my eye pressure went up afterwards which I got drops for that I will use for a week and will use the anti inflammatory drops for 4 days. Fortunately I haven't had any side effects really. My eyes are/were sensitive to lights and screens for a few days after and I haven't noticed anything else except that I dont have the headaches anymore and that feeling of fluid build up has gone away. I hope this might help someone. I was so scared going in I was actually surprised that I did. I go in a month for a follow up appt to make sure everything looks good.

Liked by azpowells

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i had this after my cataract surgery. but it dissipated on its own, i,m recovering from the laser now inflammation is the issue

Liked by azpowells

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@pattir1234

Good morning. I just wanted to share my experience with the group. I had a laser iridotomy procedure done to both my eyes. My right eye was done last week and my left eye was done yesterday. I first went to my optometrist about 6 months ago due to the fact that I had a weird feeling in my right eye – a feeling like there was fluid building up in my eye and had headaches. The dr said it looked like I had narrow angles and sent me to an Opthamologist. At that appt she said that I do have narrow angles and scheduled me in for a laser iridotomy the following month. I think I was in shock at the appointment and didnt ask all the questions I had. I ended up spending a lot of time online connecting with people who had the procedure and reading so many posts and horror stories about the actual procedure and the possible side effects. There were some positive experiences as well. I was so freaked out that I almost cancelled my appt even though I was still experiencing symptoms. Going online can be scary. I was so scared that entire month before my appt. I did go ahead with the procedure on both eyes. The right eye last week and my left eye yesterday. I would like to let you know my experience. I understand that everyone is different and will experience different things and in no way am I trying to downplay the experiences of others but only want to share my experience to try to help others. Before my appt I did take 2 tylenol as I heard that some people get awful headaches from the drops they use to constrict the pupils. At both appts I did not experience any headaches or pain from the drops. Right before the laser I had the numbing drops put in. Next is the lense thing they put on your eye that has gel on it. It didnt hurt just felt a bit weird. I was told a specific area to look at. All I could see was the gel….no lights or anything. The sound of the laser wasnt loud at all…just a clicking sound. Didnt startle me at all. The right eye took about 8 times and I could feel something only with the last 2 lasers. Wasn't painful at all!!! Felt like I got something in my eye. My experience with the left eye was almost the same except that eye was only lasered 4 times but my eye pressure went up afterwards which I got drops for that I will use for a week and will use the anti inflammatory drops for 4 days. Fortunately I haven't had any side effects really. My eyes are/were sensitive to lights and screens for a few days after and I haven't noticed anything else except that I dont have the headaches anymore and that feeling of fluid build up has gone away. I hope this might help someone. I was so scared going in I was actually surprised that I did. I go in a month for a follow up appt to make sure everything looks good.

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Just wondering what position did you have the Iridotomy (holes) ? was it the 11 or 1 oclock=Superior OR the 3 or 9 oclock= Temporal

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@jigglejaws94

Unfortunately it happens to some patients. It is called a dysphotopsia. I had bilateral peripheral iridotomies over two years ago and I still have residual crescent of light that I can sometimes see. It is the worst when watching a movie on our big screen TV, when driving in sunlight without sunglasses or when looking directly towards a window that is too bright. I doubt mine will ever change as it has remained essentially the same since fall of 2016. I will say that there have been stretches of time that go by that I don't seem to notice it as much but then later will be bothered again. Sorry to hear that you are experiencing this.

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Since it's been a few years since your Laser Iridotomy have you had any issues with cataracts? I read that the Laser Iridotomy procedure can lead to the need for lens extraction a few years out (ie cataract surgery).

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Yes. Had this same ordeal after my Iridotomy and my Dr. said that that just confirmed that the procedure was successful. So no worries. Hope this helps. Be well.

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@pattir1234

Good morning. I just wanted to share my experience with the group. I had a laser iridotomy procedure done to both my eyes. My right eye was done last week and my left eye was done yesterday. I first went to my optometrist about 6 months ago due to the fact that I had a weird feeling in my right eye – a feeling like there was fluid building up in my eye and had headaches. The dr said it looked like I had narrow angles and sent me to an Opthamologist. At that appt she said that I do have narrow angles and scheduled me in for a laser iridotomy the following month. I think I was in shock at the appointment and didnt ask all the questions I had. I ended up spending a lot of time online connecting with people who had the procedure and reading so many posts and horror stories about the actual procedure and the possible side effects. There were some positive experiences as well. I was so freaked out that I almost cancelled my appt even though I was still experiencing symptoms. Going online can be scary. I was so scared that entire month before my appt. I did go ahead with the procedure on both eyes. The right eye last week and my left eye yesterday. I would like to let you know my experience. I understand that everyone is different and will experience different things and in no way am I trying to downplay the experiences of others but only want to share my experience to try to help others. Before my appt I did take 2 tylenol as I heard that some people get awful headaches from the drops they use to constrict the pupils. At both appts I did not experience any headaches or pain from the drops. Right before the laser I had the numbing drops put in. Next is the lense thing they put on your eye that has gel on it. It didnt hurt just felt a bit weird. I was told a specific area to look at. All I could see was the gel….no lights or anything. The sound of the laser wasnt loud at all…just a clicking sound. Didnt startle me at all. The right eye took about 8 times and I could feel something only with the last 2 lasers. Wasn't painful at all!!! Felt like I got something in my eye. My experience with the left eye was almost the same except that eye was only lasered 4 times but my eye pressure went up afterwards which I got drops for that I will use for a week and will use the anti inflammatory drops for 4 days. Fortunately I haven't had any side effects really. My eyes are/were sensitive to lights and screens for a few days after and I haven't noticed anything else except that I dont have the headaches anymore and that feeling of fluid build up has gone away. I hope this might help someone. I was so scared going in I was actually surprised that I did. I go in a month for a follow up appt to make sure everything looks good.

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Excellent post. Pretty good explanation of the procedure. Thanks for sharing. Ihad 2 holes per eye done and I have had open angle Glaucoma for 18 years. Pressures have dropped about 40%.

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@jigglejaws94

Hello — I just had a Yag laser iridotomy done in my right eye about 3.5 weeks ago. The reason is because I have narrow angles and my ophthalmologist said that there was a rapid change in the angles over a four month period — so much so that he has never had a patient progress so rapidly. Anyway — I did not find the laser procedure itself to be painful. It felt like a little pinch in the eye and I believe it took about 5 “hits”. Unfortunately, my physician didn’t really warn me about what the after effects could be. You will likely be given a drug called pilocarpine which causes your pupil to constrict. It apparently also helps with thinning out the iris so that a good spot can be found to place the iridotomy. But it constricts the pupil for about 12-16 hours (or at least that is how long it lasted for me). I experienced very hazy vision for that same length of time also. Felt like I was looking through a brownish wedding veil or through a haze. About an hour after the procedure, I detected a light aberration — which appeared as a horizontal line of light across my field of vision. Over the next few days, that progressed to more of a blob of light or a crescent of light in the mid to lower visual field. It does not bother me all the time but is worse in bright light and I notice it he most when I drive.

The placement of my iridotomy was in the superior position which is somewhere between 11 and 1 o’clock position. I felt good about that position because my eyelid would cover the iridotomy hole. However, that is not a guarantee that you will not experience dysphotopsia (glares, haloes, crescents, etc) following the procedure. In fact, there is some literature that indicates that some patients still experience this phenomenon even when the eyelid fully covers the iridotomy hole. It is especially worsened if your eyelid only partially covers the hole (and I think that may be my situation).

I spoke on the phone with my doctor the following week. I let him know that I had done some online research and found that there was quite a bit of information regarding the horizontal approach — at the 3 or 9 o’clock position — and that the indication was that there was less problems with light aberration at this position. He said that the trend is to do it at the 3 or 9 o’clock position but that he prefers to do it at the superior position based on a study that came out about 10 years ago indicating that 9 percent of people will notice some light aberration in a fully covered iridotomy, 18 percent experience the same with a completely exposed iridotomy site and 27 percent with a partially covered. So he says that the risk of experiencing this doubles with a fully exposed iridotomy. HOWEVER, there is a lot of literature that indicates that the patients who get the 3 or 9’oclock position (referred to as either on the horizontal meridian or temporal position) have far less difficulty with dysphotopsias.

I am scheduled to have my left eye done on October 26th. My physician said he is happy to place the iridotomy in the temporal position, if this is what I prefer. Well, I don’t like the weight of the decision on me — because I’m not a doctor. So I wrote up an email describing my situation and sent it to about a dozen professors specializing in Glaucoma and several of the leading medical school ophthalmology programs. I have received answers back from about 5 physicians. Four of those recommend the horizontal approach. Two of them sent me a reference to a study and if you would like that forwarded to you, you can let me know your email.

It has been frustrating because prior to the procedure — my vision was perfectly fine. Now, I have to deal with this problem. So I want to do everything in my power to understand and be educated on what the best approach for my left eye. I know that though my vision was perfectly fine and now it is messed up — that I am a ticking bomb waiting to go off — and could easily develop acute angle closure glaucoma and be in an eye emergency in short order.

Hope this information is helpful somehow.

Sharon

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Hi Sharon,
I had the LPI performed at the temporal point of my eye and I am left with visual disturbances that are hard to explain. Worse at night, lights, some indoor lights. Can be described as a shadow or extension of the light. Anyway, I specifically sought this dr because of the literature I’ve read about the visual side affects of performing this surgery at the top of the eye. So, it still may have occurred had you had it done like I did. I empathize with you because other than wearing eyeglasses, I had great vision with them. Now I don’t and it gets me depressed and regretful.
Christine

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@jigglejaws94

Thanks. I am following up and awaiting a phone call from my doctor. n the meantime, I have done some research and have found several studies and mentions that the superior placement (between 11 and 1 o’clock) tend to have more problems with halos, crescents, light problems through that new whole. The main thought is that the tear meniscus at the edge of the upper lid creates a base-up prism effect when overlapping the position of the LPI. One article suggested lifting the eyelid to see if the light resolves — mine does. Well, I can’t sit around lifting my eyelid all the time. BUT, I will not have a superior placement in my left eye. The suggestion is 3 or 9 o’clock position. I never would have imagined that if the LPI was covered with the upper eyelid that there would be a problem. But apparently EVEN in cases where the hole is completely covered with the eyelid — this problem can occur. Interesting, huh? No fun messing with eyes. Especially eyes that were seeing just fine and now aren’t. Blah.

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Had mine lasered at the 9 and 3 position and I’m left with Permanent and bothersome scatted light that overlaps images. 😡

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