There are a number of conditions that affect eye health of the eye and if not detected early may lead to problems with vision. It is important for the eyes to be dilated so the retina can be thoroughly evaluated as part of a comprehensive exam for eye health.
We at Bellaire Family Eye Care are pleased to provide our patients with an advanced digital retinal exam called EyeScreen. EyeScreen is a high resolution screening photograph of your retina that will help us document, review, and compare your retina over time. We will use the EyeScreen exam to document your retinal image for our charts, screen for eye diseases and improve our ability to view your internal retinal health at a much higher resolution than a slit lamp or ophthalmoscope.
Symptoms of dry eye include redness, excessive tearing, mucous discharge, irritation, and some patients feel like something is always in their eyes. Dry eyes can sometimes be confused with other conditions affecting eye health like allergies and infections. Wearing contact lenses, taking certain medications, hormones, and some conditions like arthritis can lead to dry eyes. There are several treatments for dry eyes including the use of punctal plugs. Punctal plugs are tiny plastic plugs that are inserted into the drainage system of the eye to keep the eye lubricated. This is a non-invasive procedure and only takes a few minutes.
Changes in the intraocular lens of the eye can occur as a result of trauma, UV rays, family history, and the natural aging process. Cataracts do not grow. They are the result of changes to the internal structure of the lens. The lens becomes cloudy which can affect vision and in some patients causes glare. The removal of cataracts is not necessary if they are not interfering with vision. It is important to wear UV protection to reduce the risk of developing some forms of cataracts.
Glaucoma is a condition where the optic nerve of the eye becomes diseased, leading to permanent loss of vision. Glaucoma is a progressive disease and some patients can go years without knowing they have the disease. The intraocular pressure of the eye, visual fields, and optic nerve evaluation all lead to the diagnosis of glaucoma. It is the combination of many factors that leads to the diagnosis of glaucoma. Glaucoma typically does not cause poor vision until the disease is advanced. The risk for glaucoma increases with age and family history so it is important to have your eyes evaluated yearly.
Diabetes can affect the eye causing diabetic retinopathy, blurry vision, double vision, and cataracts. Sometimes the eye is the first place where diabetes is detected. Diabetes causes the blood vessels in the eye to become weak and leak blood and fluid. Changes in the sugar level can also cause changes in the hydration of the intraocular lens. These lens changes can result in blurry vision and in some extreme cases cataracts. It is important to have your eyes evaluated and dilated if you are experiencing any symptoms of diabetes or if you have been diagnosed with the condition.
Hypertension affects the general health of the retinal tissue because of poor circulation. The vessels in the retina can cause hemorrhaging and leak blood. We routinely check blood pressure during the vision exam to detect elevated blood pressure. If you have hypertension, it is important for the eyes to be dilated to evaluate any retinal changes.
“Pink eye” is a generic term used when the eye is red and irritated. This condition can be caused by a number of things. Bacterial and viral infections are the most common cause of pink eye. If the condition is from a virus, antibiotics will not treat it. Viral infections can take anywhere from a few days to a few weeks to go away.
Dr. Voss, Dr. Moore and Dr. Tucker are concerned about retinal problems such as macular degeneration, glaucoma, retinal holes, detachments, and diabetic retinopathy – all of which can lead to eye health issues including vision loss or blindness. Additionally, many symptoms of systemic diseases such as diabetes, the effects of high blood pressure and other diseases can be detected with the EyeScreen Examination.