When Amar Agarwal, chairman, Dr. Agarwal’s Eye Hospital, was operating on 83-year-old Sulochana Erady for glaucoma, he realised that the usual laser technique, in which an opening is created to let the fluid from the eye drain, would not work. “She had closed angle glaucoma, and it was impossible to use a laser, as it would have affected the cornea. That is when we decided to do something new — single-pass four throw (SFT) pupilloplasty,” he said. Speaking to the press on Saturday, Dr. Agarwal said the technique had been used for the first time to treat closed angle glaucoma in Ms. Sulochana. “The technique involves pulling the iris from the angle where it is attached, suturing it in place and creating a clear angle for the fluid in the eye (aqueous humour) to drain out. The suture is looped only once around the iris and knotted, rather than the usual three times, which means that the iris can be dilated for other treatment if necessary,” he said.

 Ms. Sulochana had first come to the hospital at the end of January with a cataract, said her son T.M. Jayachandran. “On February 11, she underwent a cataract surgery. On February 23, she suddenly developed pain and blurry vision in her left eye,” he said.

High eye pressure

Doctors found that her eye pressure was 45 mm — normal eye pressure is 15 to 20 mm, Dr. Agarwal said. “Had this situation continued, she would have lost her vision,” he said.

The advantage with the technique, Dr. Agarwal said, was that it was correction of the normal anatomy of the eye. Dr. Agarwal said after that, they performed the technique in five cases in total and have had good results. “We have also published a paper on this in the European Journal of Ophthalmology,” he said.