Possibly. There is growing evidence that Schelmm’s canal (the eye’s natural drainage duct) decreases in size with long-term use of glaucoma medications. If there is significant stenosis (scarring down) of the canal, then it may not be possible to thread the catheter all of the way around the canal. However, even if a stent cannot be left in the canal it is generally possible to dilate a significant portion of the canal with viscoelastic. When the cathether cannot be fully threaded and a stent is not placed, this procedure is called viscocanalostomy. Viscocanalostomy has been around since 1991 and is also an effective treatment for glaucoma (though less so than Canaloplasty).

Reference:

  1. Dahan E, Drusedau MU: Nonpenetrating filtration surgery for glaucoma: control by surgery only. J Cataract Refract Surg 26:695—701, 2000

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