Definition of Surgery, YAG laser

Surgery, YAG laser: The use of a YAG (yttrium-aluminum-garnet) laser to do surgery.

One use for a YAG laser in surgery is to punch a hole in the iris to relieve increased pressure within the eye from acute angle-closure glaucoma. In this type of glaucoma, there is a sudden (acute) increase in pressure in the anterior (front) chamber of the eye due to abrupt blockage of the normal circulation of fluid within the eye.

There are other kinds of YAG laser surgery for the eye (e.g., for cataracts) and other areas of the body including the skin (e.g., to remove birth marks).

YAG laser surgery is an office procedure. It is also used in some hospital procedures including laparoscopy for endometriosis.


Last Editorial Review: 8/28/2013

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