Reversible Venting Stitch for Fenestrating Valve-less Glaucoma Shunts

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The purpose of this is to describe a venting stitch modification for valveless glaucoma aqueous shunts and characterize early postoperative intraocular pressure (IOP) and glaucoma medication use following the modification.

Materials and Methods:

Retrospective chart review of 61 sequential patients undergoing Baerveldt glaucoma implant (BGI)-350 implantation at the Doheny Eye Institute. Twenty-four patients received a glaucoma shunt with venting stitch modification (modified BGI) and 37 patients received an unmodified shunt (BGI-only). IOP, number of glaucoma medications, and number of hypotony cases (intraocular pressure ≤5 mm Hg) were compared between the groups. T-tests were used for statistical analysis.


At postoperative-day 1, mean IOP was significantly lower compared with preoperatively in the modified BGI group (14 mm Hg; reduced by 51%; P<0.0001) but not the BGI-only group (27 mm Hg; P=0.06). IOP difference between groups persisted till immediately before tube opening (P=0.005) and fewer IOP-lowering medications needed in the modified BGI group (P<0.0001). One case (4.2%) of postoperative hypotony was encountered with BGI modification, which resolved after the stitch was removed in clinic.


The venting stitch valveless shunt modification allows for effective, reliable, and safe control of early postoperative IOP.

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