Trabecular meshwork

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Overview


An enlarged side view of the eye. The aqueous humour is flowing into the trabecular meshwork, which is located between the cornea (in front) and the iris (behind).
Trabecular meshwork
The direction of flow of the aqueous humour into the trabecular meshwork (purple arrow)

The trabecular meshwork is a specialised structure located between the iris and the base of the cornea. It regulates eye pressure by draining a type of fluid produced inside the eye called the aqueous humour. This is different from tears which is produced outside of the eye.

The aqueous humour provides nourishment to cells inside the eye and also to keep the eye inflated. The pressure to keep the eye inflated is what eye doctors commonly refer to as the eye pressure. The production of aqueous humour is constantly matched by the drainage to the trabecular meshwork to maintain normal eye pressure.


Glaucoma


If the trabecular meshwork is not working properly, the eye pressure will increase to harmful levels that might damage the optic nerve, causing visual loss. This condition is known as glaucoma. It affects our field of vision (peripheral vision) and patients do not tend to notice any symptoms early on in the disease. However, patients will start noticing their field of vision getting smaller as the disease progresses, eventually leading to tunnel vision.


Gallery


Other related images

This image demonstrates the cornea, which is a clear transparent layer that is located in front of the iris (a structure that gives the eye colour) and the lens.
Location of the cornea, iris and lens as seen normally (A) and a three dimensional illustration (B). Note the cornea (in green circle) is in front of the iris and the lens


This demonstrates what patients with tunnel vision experience. One picture shows a cow behind a fence in a field while another shows only the face of the cow at the centre of the picture with the rest of the picture all in black, simulating tunnel vision.
Tunnel vision