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Trabeculectomy surgery creates a new route for aqueous fluid to drain out of the eye, reducing the intraocular pressure.


The raised intraocular pressure associated with glaucoma can damage the optic nerve, leading to loss of vision. Most glaucoma patients can control their pressures with eye drops or laser treatment. If drops and laser do not sufficiently lower the intraocular pressure then trabeculectomy surgery may be recommended. Trabeculectomy is a type of glaucoma surgery which creates a new route for the aqueous fluid to drain out of the eye, reducing the intraocular pressure. As the fluid drains a little conjunctival swelling, called a bleb, forms. The bleb is located at the top of the cornea, under the eyelid. Trabeculectomy surgery alone is usually sufficient to control the intraocular pressure, without the additional need for glaucoma drops.

The Process

Surgery takes 1 hour and is carried out under local anaesthetic, with sedation if required

The loose conjunctiva tissue is opened and a partial-thickness flap is created in the white sclera. The flap is secured with releasable sutures and the conjunctiva is closed. To reduce scarring a special chemical, called 5FU, is applied to the wound

Following surgery, as the eye starts to drain a little conjunctival bleb forms under the upper lid. The rate of drainage can be adjusted by releasing the flap sutures, if needed.

An antibiotic and an anti-inflammatory injection is given at the end of surgery.

Why MY Eye Clinic?

My Eye Clinic can provide expert consultant assessment of glaucoma.

My Eye Clinic has a full range of diagnostic equipment for glaucoma: corneal thickness measurement, intraocular pressure measurement, drainage angle assessment, automated visual field assessment and OCT scans of the optic disc.

My Eye Clinic has a new operating theatre fully equipped with the latest generation cataract machine (Alcon Centurion Gold), an excellent operating microscope and a new (Dorc Nexus) combined cataract and vitrectomy machine.

Your Consultants

Consultant Eye Surgeon with a specialist interest in Glaucoma

Mr El-Assal completed his Ophthalmology training in the North East of England. He accomplished his glaucoma sub-specialist fellowship in Moorfields Eye Hospital-London where he developed a special interest in minimally invasive glaucoma surgery (MIGS). He is currently working as a Consultant specialising in glaucoma and cataract surgery at Sunderland Eye Infirmary.

Consultant Eye Surgeon with a specialist interest in Glaucoma

Mr Doherty undertook undergraduate and postgraduate medical training in Newcastle upon Tyne before proceeding to Ophthalmology specialist training in both the Northern and Yorkshire Deaneries. He subsequently completed an eighteen-month Glaucoma subspeciality fellowship at Moorfields Eye Hospital in London. He was appointed as a Consultant in Glaucoma and Cataract treatment at Sunderland Eye Infirmary in September 2013.


Trabeculectomy LA



Trabeculectomy is a well established surgical procedure with a success rate of 95% in controlling the intraocular pressure. Risks associated with the procedure include:

Failure of the surgery to control the eye pressure (5%). This generally occurs as a result of scarring around the eye. This can often be revised by breaking up the scar tissue.

Overdrainage that can cause very low eye pressure (5%). This can be temporary or it can require additional surgery to revise the trabeculectomy.

Overall, revision surgery is required in under 5%.

Trabeculectomy is known to speed up the natural development of cataracts. Up to 50% of patients, who have not yet had cataract surgery, will develop lens opacities in 2-4 years.

Rare risks: Infection (<1%), uncontrolled inflammation (<1%), permanent irreversible reduction of vision (<1%).

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MY Eye Clinic
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Anthony TooleAnthony Toole
12:56 16 Apr 24
Alistair QuinnAlistair Quinn
13:07 09 Apr 24
First class recommendation for My Eye Clinic and in particular Andrew Peel who was professional, knowledgeable very thorough. A pleasure to deal with!
Holly RobinsonHolly Robinson
12:16 28 Mar 24
So helpful and reassuring. My site is amazing. The whole process was so smooth, I understood everything that I was told and knew of any risks and potential side effects before agreeing to anything. Couldn't be happier.
Dawn RaffleDawn Raffle
19:10 21 Feb 24
I recently had permanent lens procedure carried out by Mr Ghosh. Having glasses as a child and contact lenses for many years, this has been an absolute revelation for me. Mr Ghosh was absolutely brilliant and very professional from the start. All the staff are lovely and especially like to thank Dianne, Anita and the team. This has changed my life for the better thanks.
Anis FinnAnis Finn
09:35 29 Mar 23
Beautiful clinic, really nice atmosphere, prompt service and really friendly and professional staff. Fernando was particularly great!I would definitely recommend.
Mrs TigerMrs Tiger
17:51 17 Jan 23
Excellent care, all staff very courteous and helpful. YAG surgery clearly explained to me by Mr Morgan, who did a brilliant job. I'd highly recommend this clinic.
Arya DaniArya Dani
14:43 22 Dec 22
Good location
Audrey GilesAudrey Giles
08:58 23 Nov 22
I visited the My Hearing Clinic knowing I needed a hearing assessment but thinking it was just a build up of wax. It came as a shock that I heard a hearing loss which needed addressing. The service I received from Andrew was outstanding! He explained my hearing loss and went through all my options. He recognised that it was a lot of information to take in so made a follow up appointment, giving me sufficient time to think about what I wanted to do. From start to finish the service has been excellent, efficient, professional and friendly from the moment you walk through the door and meet Lee. The clinic is well located, parking on site, high standard of cleanliness. Definitely a recommendation from me. Thank you!
Andrea BoothAndrea Booth
19:55 22 Nov 22
Absolutely first class treatment and experience at this wonderful clinic. Staff were exceptionally welcoming and friendly Mr Morgan the consultant was lovely explaining everything. I had YAG laser treatment painless no discomfort and almost immediate corrected vision. Thank you all so very very much.
Glynis GallagherGlynis Gallagher
16:41 17 Nov 21
Visited clinic today with a totally blocked left ear. Had micro suction to remove a huge build up of ear wax. It was over in minutes. Excellent, efficient and friendly service from start to finish. Would recommend 100% Worth every penny!
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