Argon Laser Trabeculoplasty (ALT) for Glaucoma


This outpatient procedure is designed to reduce excess fluid pressure in the eye caused by glaucoma. A laser is used to treat the trabecular meshwork, the area of the eye responsible for fluid drainage. The procedure is usually completed within 10 minutes.


The area around the eye is cleaned, and the eye is numbed. A special contact lens is placed over the cornea to help direct the laser light.

Laser Treatment

The laser is used repeatedly at evenly-spaced intervals along the trabecular meshwork to open drainage pathways. The physician will typically treat 50 to 100 points.

End of Procedure/After Care

Vision may be slightly blurry for the rest of the day, and anti-inflammatory eyedrops may be prescribed. Pressure in the eye should drop within days or weeks. Effects may not be permanent - the surgery often needs to be repeated in three to five years.