Anterior chamber paracentesis in patients with acute elevation of intraocular pressure

Graefes Arch Clin Exp Ophthalmol. 2007 Mar;245(3):345-50. doi: 10.1007/s00417-006-0465-5. Epub 2006 Nov 17.


Purpose: The purpose was to evaluate the efficacy and the safety of anterior chamber paracentesis (ACP) in acute elevation of intraocular pressure (IOP).

Methods: We prospectively enrolled 20 patients who presented with acute unilateral elevation of IOP above 50 mmHg. IOP was measured before, 10 min, and 1, 7 and 30 days after ACP. The outcome at 1 year was available in 19 patients.

Results: The patients included 14 cases of primary acute angle-closure attacks and six cases of secondary glaucoma. IOP decreased from 53.4 +/- 4.2 mmHg to 24.1 +/- 12.5 mmHg at 10 min, to 18.2 +/- 11.1 mmHg at 24 h, and to 16.4 +/- 10.7 mmHg 7 days after ACP. ACP combined with antiglaucomatous medications provided immediate relief of symptoms in all cases and improvement of corneal oedema in 17 cases. We noted three failures in secondary glaucoma. We performed a laser peripheral iridotomy (LPI) in 14 patients and a surgical procedure in 17 eyes. No complications related to ACP were observed.

Conclusion: ACP is a safe and effective procedure for acute elevation of IOP in acute primary primary angle-closure but only remains an add-on therapy to usual treatments. However, this technique must be evaluated in larger series.

MeSH terms

  • Acute Disease
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Anterior Chamber / surgery*
  • Female
  • Glaucoma, Angle-Closure / surgery*
  • Humans
  • Intraocular Pressure*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Ocular Hypertension / surgery
  • Paracentesis / methods*
  • Prospective Studies
  • Tonometry, Ocular