Cataract is the clouding of our natural lens. As we grow old small clumps of protein can form in the lens and cause it to become cloudy — and vision cannot be improved with glasses or contact lenses.
Surgery is the only effective treatment. Surgery will be considered when reduced vision interferes with activities like driving, work or hobbies. Before surgery a doctor will ask how you want to see out of that eye. A basic monofocal lens will allow the eye to see clearly either close up or at a distance. You also can opt for a premium lens, such as one that corrects astigmatism, or a multifocal lens that can potentially restore a full range of vision without eyeglasses.
During the operation the surgeon will make a small opening in the cornea (the front part of the eye), insert a tiny high-frequency ultrasound probe to break the cloudy lens into fine particles, vacuum them out and then implant a clear artificial lens.
Glaucoma is a slow progressive disease that is asymptomatic and affects peripheral vision first. This disease damages the optic nerve due to an increased pressure inside the eye. Risk factors for glaucoma include age, family history, African American or Hispanic race, diabetes, migraines or low blood pressure. Eyedrops to lower pressure are the most common early treatment. Surgery may be recommended to improve the flow of fluid out of the eye and control pressure
Age related macular degeneration (ARMD) causes vision loss in the center of your visual field. There are two stages: dry and wet. ARMD starts off as dry for everyone, and then progresses to the wet stage where there is blood vessel growth under the retina in the back of the eye. Old age, smoking, family history and caucasian race are risk factors for ARMD. In the dry stage patients are advised to take a high dose of antioxidants and vitamins formulated in the AREDS 2 study. Patients who have the wet stage need periodic injections in the eye.
Dry eyes are a common problem and can be a result of many different factors. Some of the common symptoms of dry eyes are stinging, gritty, scratchy, and uncomfortable eyes. To diagnose this problem your Doctor of Optometry will focus on your general health, use of medications, and your home and work environment to determine what may be the cause of your dry eyes. Left untreated dry eyes can be harmful. Excessive dry eyes can damage and/or possibly scar the sensitive corneal tissues of your eye, impairing your vision. Although there is no cure for dry eyes there are options that can be offered to help you with the symptoms, such as artificial lubricated eye drops or ointments, and in more severe cases, small plugs may be inserted in the corner of the eyelids to slow drainage and loss of tears.
Conjunctivitis is an inflammation of the conjunctiva- the thin, transparent layer covering the surface of the inner eyelid and a portion of the front of the eye. This infectious form is commonly known as “pink eye”. It is a reaction to pollen, allergies to animals or fabrics. Some of the symptoms of conjunctivitis are red eyes, inflamed eyelids and watery eyes, blurred vision and a gritty or scratchy feeling in the eyes. Treatment for conjunctivitis is antibiotic eye drops or antibiotic ointment. To prevent you from getting conjunctivitis is to keep your hands away from your eyes; wash your hands frequently, as well as before applying eye medication; and avoid sharing pillows and towels and wash cloths with others.