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Eye Disease Detection, Treatment & Management

Comprehensive eye exams are a crucial part of preventive healthcare to check your vision quality and for the development of eye diseases, such as:

  • Age Related Macular Degeneration (AMD)
  • Diabetic Eye Diseases
  • Glaucoma
  • Cataracts

Early Detection is Crucial to Avoid Vision Loss

Early detection, treatment, and management will help slow down progression and prevent vision loss.

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Eye diseases can damage your vision permanently and
progress without any noticeable symptoms:

Age Related Macular Degeneration (AMD)

Age Related Macular Degeneration (AMD)

Blurry or fuzzy vision, especially in the center.

Age-related macular degeneration (AMD)  damage to the macula which can lead to central vision loss. Central vision is responsible for reading, writing, driving, and recognizing faces, so any loss of vision in this area may make day-to-day tasks difficult. You may not experience any pain or symptoms as the disease progresses

Dry AMD is the most common type of AMD, it occurs when parts of the macula become thinner due to aging and accumulate tiny clumps of protein.

Wet AMD occurs when blood vessels grow under the retina and leak fluid into the macula and is responsible for the majority of cases of blindness as a result of AMD.

Symptoms:
– straight lines that appear wavy
– your central vision blurs in a way that glasses cannot correct
– dark, empty areas or blind spots in the center of vision
– loss of central vision
– colors that appear less bright
– difficulty seeing in low lighting
– difficulty recognizing faces
– tiny yellow deposits in the retina called drusen

Treat and slow progression with AREDS/AREDS2 vitamin & minerals:
– Vitamin C (500 milligrams)
– Vitamin E (400 international units)
– Lutein (10 milligrams)
– Zeaxanthin (2 milligrams)
– Zinc (80 milligrams)
– Copper (2 milligrams)

Doctor may recommend medications via injection for advanced AMD.

 

Cataracts

Cataracts

Cloudy areas in the eye's lens that can cause vision loss.

As you age, the clear lens of your eye can thicken and become opaque. This is called a cataract. They are often the result of the normal aging process, though there are cases where cataracts are present at birth.

Symptoms:
– foggy or blurry vision
– difficulty seeing at night
– seeing halos around lights
– muted color vision
– sensitivity to light
– with or without pain and redness

Prevention / slowing of growth:
– protect your eyes from UV rays -a great pair of sunglasses can help!
– eat foods rich in antioxidants like blueberries, apples, artichokes, and dark green veggies like kale and broccoli

Treatment:
– obstructions to vision can be remedied through corrective lenses.
When should you consider surgery?  if your cataracts increase in size and glasses or contact lenses no longer provide the vision you want. Are you have difficulty driving or performing your job safely, are struggling to watch television or read, or are experiencing challenges with daily activities that decrease your quality of life? It may be time to explore your surgery options.
Cataract surgery is safe and effective. We co-manage your cataract surgery with renowned surgeons from NVISION. We provide your eye exam and pre and post care and you go to Nvision for your surgical consultation and procedure.

Glaucoma

Glaucoma

Eye diseases where pressure builds up inside the eye

Glaucoma is a group of eye diseases where pressure builds up inside the eye, damaging the optic nerve and causing irreversible vision loss. Often, the progression of glaucoma is slow and not easily noticeable, earning the disease the nickname “the silent thief of sight.

Risk factors may include:
– family history of glaucoma
– extreme refractive errors
– past eye injury or trauma
– use of certain medications
– heart disease, diabetes, or high blood pressure

There are several types of glaucoma:
Open-Angle Glaucoma
– fluid buildup caused by blockage of the eye’s drainage channels can increase intraocular pressure (IOP) and cause open-angle glaucoma.
– peripheral vision is the first thing impacted, followed by central vision.

Angle-Closure Glaucoma
– occurs when the space between the iris and cornea narrows, trapping fluid in the eye. When the pressure rises as a result of this fluid, angle-closure glaucoma occurs.
– it can appear suddenly (acute) or progress gradually (chronic). Acute angle-closure glaucoma is a medical emergency. Sudden onset headaches, blurry vision, eye redness, or halos appearing around lights mean you should call your optometrist immediately.

Secondary Glaucoma
– occurs when intraocular pressure is caused by eye trauma, injury, or infection.

Normal-Tension Glaucoma
– when the optic nerve is damaged, but intraocular pressure remains within normal range, normal-tension glaucoma may be the cause.

Treatment:
– prescription eye drops are the most common treatment.
– laser treatment to help the fluid drain out of your eye to lower your eye pressure.
– if medicines and laser treatment don’t work, your doctor might suggest surgery.

Diabetic Eye Disease

Diabetic Eye Disease

People with diabetes are at an increased risk of eye diseases

Diabetic retinopathy – high blood sugar levels cause damage to blood vessels in the retina. It often progresses slowly and may not present visible symptoms until irreversible vision loss occurs.

Diabetic macular edema is quite serious and can impact the ability to read, write, drive, and recognize faces.

Prevention
– you can reduce your risk of developing diabetic retinopathy, or help stop it getting worse, by keeping your blood sugar levels, blood pressure and cholesterol levels under control. This can often be done by making healthy lifestyle choices, although some people will also need to take medication.

Possible Treatments:
– laser therapy: Uses heat to seal or destroy leaking blood vessels in the retina
– injections: Involves monthly injections of steroids or anti-VEGF drugs to reduce swelling or slow the growth of abnormal blood vessels
Vitrectomy: A procedure that removes the jelly-like substance in the center of the eye and replaces it with saline solution
– surgery: May be needed to fix severe or permanent damage, such as retinal detachment
– implants: Such as Iluvien, which releases a small amount of corticosteroid over time