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Cataract PDFCATARACT

A cataract is a loss of transparency, or clouding, of the normally clear lens of the eye. As one ages, chemical changes occur in the lens that make it less transparent. The loss of transparency may be so mild vision is hardly affected or so severe that no shapes or movements are seen, only light and dark. When the lens gets cloudy enough to obstruct vision to any significant degree, it is called a cataract. Glasses or contact lenses cannot sharpen your vision if a cataract is present.

Catatact Graphic BalloonThe most common cause of cataract is aging. Other causes include trauma, medications such as steroids, systemic diseases such as diabetes and prolonged exposure to ultraviolet light. Occasionally, babies are born with a cataract.

Reducing the amount of ultraviolet light exposure by wearing a wide-brim hat and sunglasses may reduce your risk for developing a cataract but once developed there is no cure except to have the cataract surgically removed. Outpatient surgical procedures can remove the cataract through a small incision (phacoemulsification). The time to have the surgical procedure is when your vision is bad enough that it interferes with your lifestyle.

Cataract Eye Graphic 1Cataract surgery is a very successful operation. One and a half million people have this procedure every year and 95% have a successful result. As with any surgical procedure, rare complications can occur during or after surgery and some are severe enough to limit vision. But in most cases, vision, as well as quality of life, improves.

 

 

 

 

2009 – 2014 Kensington Ophthalmology, PLLC. All Rights Reserved.

Diabetes PDFDIABETES

If you have diabetes mellitus, your body does not use and store sugar properly. High blood-sugar levels can damage blood vessels in the retina, the nerve layer at the back of the eye that senses light and helps to send images to the brain. The damage to retinal vessels is referred to as diabetic retinopathy.

Diabetes Eye Care ArtTypes of diabetic retinopathy

There are two types of diabetic retinopathy: nonproliferative diabetic retinopathy (NPDR) and proliferative diabetic retinopathy (PDR). NPDR, commonly known as background retinopathy, is an early stage of diabetic retinopathy. In this stage, tiny blood vessels within the retina leak blood or fluid. The leaking fluid causes the retina to swell or to form deposits called exudates. Many people with diabetes have mild NPDR, which usually does not affect their vision. When vision is affected it is the result of macular edema and/or macular ischemia.

PDR is present when abnormal new vessels (neovascularization) begin growing on the surface of the retina or optic nerve. The main cause of PDR is widespread closure of retinal blood vessels, preventing adequate blood flow. The retina responds by growing new blood vessels in an attempt to supply blood to the area where the original vessels closed.

Diabetic retinopathy diagnosed?

Diabetes Eye Care Art 2A medical eye examination is the only way to find changes inside your eye. An ophthalmologist (EyeMD) can often diagnose and treat serious retinopathy before you are aware of any vision problems. The ophthalmologist dilates your pupil and looks inside of the eye with an ophthalmoscope.

How is diabetic retinopathy treated?

The best treatment is to prevent the development of retinopathy as much as possible. Strict control of your blood sugar will significantly reduce the long-term risk of vision loss from diabetic retinopathy. If high blood pressure and kidney problems are present, they need to be treated.

Laser surgery is often recommended for people with macular edema, PDR and neovascular glaucoma.

Vision loss is largely preventable

If you have diabetes, it is important to know that today, with improved methods of diagnosis and treatment, only a small percentage of people who develop retinopathy have serious vision problems. Early detection of diabetic retinopathy is the best protection against loss of vision. You con significantly lower your risk of vision loss by maintaining strict control of your blood sugar and visiting your ophthalmologist regularly.

When to schedule and examination

People with diabetes should schedule examinations at least once a year. More frequent medical eye examinations may be necessary after the diagnosis of diabetic retinopathy. Pregnant women with diabetes should schedule an appointment in the first trimester because retinopathy can progress quickly during pregnancy.

You should have your eyes checked promptly if you have visual changes that:

  • Affect only one eye
  • Last more than a few days
  • Are not associated with a change in blood sugar.

When you are first diagnosed with diabetes, you should have your eyes checked:

  • Within five years of the diagnosis if you are 30 years old or younger
  • Within a few months of the diagnosis if you are older than 30 years

2009 – 2014 Kensington Ophthalmology, PLLC. All Rights Reserved.

Eyelid Surgery PDFEYELID SURGERY

Eyelid surgery is a common method of treatment for entropion (inward turning of the eyelid), ectropion (outward turning of the eyelid), ptosi.s (drooping of the eyelid), and some eyelid tumors.

Eyelid surgery is usually an outpatient procedure with local anesthesia. Risks of surgery are rare, but include asymmetry of the eyelids. Differences in healing between the eyes may cause some unevenness after surgery.

After eyelid surgery, a black eye is common but goes away quickly. It may be difficult to close your eyelids completely, making the eyes feel dry. This irritation generally disappears as the surgery heals. Serious complications are rare but include vision loss, scarring, and infection. To most people, the improvement in vision, comfort and appearance after eyelid surgery is very gratifying.

 

Before and after eyelid surgery photo

 eyelid surgery before after 2Eyelid Surgery Before and After

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2009 – 2014 Kensington Ophthalmology, PLLC. All Rights Reserved.

 

GLAUCOMAGlaucoma PDF

What is glaucoma?

Glaucoma is a disease of the optic nerve, which is the part of the eye that carries the images we see from the eye to the brain. The optic nerve is made up of many nerve fibers (like an electric cable containing numerous wires). Glaucoma damages nerve fibers, which can cause blind spots in our vision and vision loss to develop.

Glaucoma Services 1

Glaucoma has to do with the pressure inside the eye, or intraocular pressure (TOP). When the clear liquid called the aqueous humor–which normally flows in and out of the eye–cannot drain properly, pressure builds up in the eye. The resulting increase in Top can damage the optic nerve.

The most common form of glaucoma is primary open-angle glaucoma, where the aqueous fluid that normally circulates in the front portion of the eye is blocked from flowing back out of the eye through a tiny drainage system. This causes the pressure inside your eye to increase, which can damage the optic nerve and lead to vision loss. Most people who develop primary open-angle glaucoma notice no symptoms until their vision is impaired.

In angle-closure glaucoma, the iris (the colored part of the eye) may drop over and completely close off the drainage angle, abruptly blocking the flow of aqueous fluid and leading to increased TOP or optic nerve damage. In acute angle- closure glaucoma there is a sudden increase in TOP due to the buildup of aqueous fluid. This condition is considered an emergency because optic nerve damage and vision loss can occur within hours of the problem. Symptoms can include nausea, vomiting, seeing haloes around light, and eye pain.Glaucoma Services Angle Closure_1

Even people with “normal” IOP can experience vision loss from glaucoma. This condition is called normal tension glaucoma. In this type of glaucoma, the optic nerve is damaged even though the IOP is considered normal. Normal tension glaucoma is not well understood, but we do know that lowering IOP has been shown to slow progression of this form of glaucoma.

Childhood glaucoma is rare, and starts in infancy, childhood or adolescence. Like primary open-angle glaucoma, there are few, if any, symptoms in the early stage. Blindness can result if it is left untreated. Like most types of glaucoma, this type of glaucoma may run in families.

Glaucoma Services Angle ClosureYour ophthalmologist may tell you that you are at risk for glaucoma if you have one or more risk factors, including elevated TOP, a family history of glaucoma, background, advanced age, thin corneas or certain optic nerve conditions. Regular examinations with your ophthalmologist are important if you are at risk for this condition.

 

 

 

2009 – 2014 Kensington Ophthalmology, PLLC. All Rights Reserved.

LASIK

Lasik PDFUntil recently, if you were one of the millions of people with a refractive error, eyeglasses and contact lenses were the only options for correcting vision. With with the arrival of refractive surgery, some people with myopia (nearsightedness), hyperopia (farsightedness), or astigmatism (a cornea with unequal curves), may have their vision improved through surgery.

 

 

Laser assisted in situ keratomileusis, or LASIK, is a refractive procedure that uses a laser to permanently reshape the cornea. The reshaped cornea helps focus light directly onto the retina to produce clearer vision.

LASIK is usually performed as an outpatient procedure using topical anesthesia with drops. The procedure itself generally takes about fifteen minutes. The surgeon creates a flap in the cornea with a laser (femtosecond laser) which is also known as Intralase. The flap is lifted to the side and the cool beam of the excimer laser is used to remove a layer of corneal tissue. The flap is folded back to its normal position and sealed without sutures. The removal of corneal tissue permanently reshapes the cornea.

A shield protects the flap for the first day and night. Vision should be clear by the next day. Healing after surgery is often less painful than with other methods of refractive surgery since the laser removes tissue from the inside of the cornea and not the surface. When needed, eyedrops can be taken for pain and usually are only needed up to one week.

Some people experience poor night vision after LASIK. The surgery may result in undercorrection or overcorrection, which can often be improved with a second surgery. More rare and serious complications include a dislocated flap, epithelial ingrowth and inflammation underneath the flap. Most complications can be managed without any loss of vision. Permanent vision loss is very rare.

The ideal candidate for LASIK has a stable refractive error within the correctable range, is free of eye disease, is at least eighteen years old and is willing to accept the potential risks, complications and side effects of LASIK.

 

2009 – 2014 Kensington Ophthalmology, PLLC. All Rights Reserved.

 

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