What is Cryotherapy?“Cryo” refers to freezing. Ocular Cryotherapy is the therapeutic use of cold temperatures to treat eye diseases such as:
- Retinal tear or detachment
- Retinal ischemia
- Coats' disease
The procedure results in scarring as a treatment similar to laser treatment, but the result is accomplished through freezing rather than light beams. During this procedure, a cold, metal probe is placed against the wall of the eye. The metal probe freezes the eye’s layers— including the retina. The freezing of the eye results in an adhesive scar that seals the retina against the back wall of the eye.
Cryotherapy takes about a week to form a strong adhesion to keep the retinal in place. Cryotherapy is most commonly paired with pneumatic retinopexy— a procedure where a gas bubble is injected to keep the retina in place. A pneumatic retinopexy is usually needed to position the retina, since as the adhesive scar takes a few days to mature.
How is the treatment performed?Cryotherapy is performed in our office, as the patient is under a local anesthetic. The eye is anesthetized, most commonly with a numbing injection. The numbing injection is typically completely painless. A head light and lens is used during the procedure so the freezing, metal proves can be correctly positioned adjacent to the retinal tear.
Normally, several separate cryotherapy spots are created surround the tear. Although the procedure is painless, patients may feel the pressure of the eye during the procedure.
For information and consultation regarding Cryotherapy Treatment, contact our main office at (405) 607-6699.