Ahmed Versus Baerveldt Glaucoma Drainage Implantation in Patients With Markedly Elevated Intraocular Pressure (≥30 mm Hg)

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Glaucoma patients with markedly elevated intraocular pressure (IOP) are at risk for developing severe hypotony-related complications. The goal of this study was to compare the surgical outcomes of the Ahmed Glaucoma Valve (AGV) and the Baerveldt Glaucoma Implant (BGI) in this patient population.


Patients with preoperative IOP≥30 mm Hg were included. Outcome measures were: (1) surgical failure (IOP>21 mm Hg or <30% reduction from baseline or IOP≤5 mm Hg on 2 consecutive follow-up visits after 3 mo, or additional glaucoma surgery, or loss of light perception) and (2) surgical complications.


A total of 75 patients were included: 37 in the AGV group and 38 in the BGI group. The mean±SD follow-up was 2.3±1.6 years for the AGV group and 2.4±1.7 years for the BGI group (P=0.643). Mean preoperative IOP was 38.7±6.5 mm Hg for the AGV group and 40.8±7.6 mm Hg for the BGI group. At the last follow-up, 10 (27.0%) patients failed in the AGV group compared with 6 (15.8%) patients in the BGI group (P=0.379). The BGI group had higher rate of flat or shallow anterior chamber (n=4, 10%) compared with the AGV group (n=0, 0%) (P=0.043).


Failure rates of AGV and BGI in patients with IOP≥30 mm Hg were comparable. There were more early hypotony-related complications in the BGI group; however, none were vision threatening. Both glaucoma drainage implants were effective in treating patients with uncontrolled glaucoma in an emergency setting.

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