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Are You Confused By Dry Eye Acronyms?

Your doctor says “your DED may be MGD and create CVS which may be TMI.”

Your response is probably “OMG, please say that again so I can understand it!”

OK. Your complaints of ‘tired eyes’ while using your computer, or Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS), is related to Dry Eye Disease (DED) which many times is related to Meibomian Gland Dysfunction (MGD).  Meibomian glands are located inside your eyelids, about 50 in the upper and half that many in each lower lid.  It is a type of sebaceous gland that produces a lipid secretion with over 40 different proteins that blend with secreted fluid from your other “tear” glands.  When working properly this secretion helps stabilizes your tear film, allowing you to use your eyes for prolonged periods of time with minimal blinking. Unfortunately by age 60, more than 50% of us do not have properly functioning meibomian glands.

Have you been told your complaints of excessive tearing is due to Dry Eyes? And you are thinking, “Did I not just say I have too many tears?” Yes, but what eye doctors see during their exam are dry areas on the surface of your eye, hence Dry Eye Disease.  These dry areas create friction when you blink and that stimulates your lacrimal tear gland to release more of the aqueous, watery, component of your tear film p roducing the watery eyes that brought you to the doctor.

And, after the doctor tells you that you have Dry Eyes (not watery eyes), you hear that it is age related and the treatment requires more intense hygiene.  So your doctor has not only misdiagnosed your watery eyes, but he then tells you you’re just getting old and implies you do not know how to properly wash your face.  Not a good day.

Not to worry.  We are here for you. If you happen to be a local Bradenton patient who’s seeking Dry Eye Treatments, our eye specialists will be able to help you work through yet another wonderful age-related problem and teach you how to modify your face washing routine so your ‘watery eyes’ will feel better. Now, you can go ahead and have that good day after all.

By Richard Hector, MD

Who has a higher risk for glaucoma?

Glaucoma

 

Aging is one of the risk factors for glaucoma and every birthday make you at higher risk for the disease.

Birthday seniors

Birthdays increase the risk for glaucoma

Unfortunately, the older you are over 65, the higher your risk for this disease. It affects over 3 million Americans, and it is the second leading cause of blindness in the United States. Fortunately, if it is detected early and properly treated, most vision loss is preventable.

What Is Glaucoma?

It is a disease that is often linked to a buildup of pressure in the eye. The increased buildup can cause damage to your optic nerve, thereby causing a loss of vision. The two most common types of glaucoma are Open Angle  and Narrow Angle.

 

Why is it called the “Silent Thief of Sight”?

Glaucoma can slowly steal your eyesight without your even realizing that anything is wrong. The damage is usually painless, it progresses slowly and most often it is without noticeable symptoms.

How do you know if you have it?

This disease is usually discovered during a routine eye examination. Since it tends to run in families, it is important for the entire family to have regular eye examinations, especially if there is a family history of glaucoma. Even though the chance for developing it increases with age, it can strike at any age. The Eye Associates tests for glaucoma at every visit, even our younger patients.

What is the difference between Open Angle and Narrow Angle Glaucoma?

Open Angle

Our eyes have a constant flow of fluid that drains through the “angle” of the eye. In Open Angle, this drainage system becomes clogged, causing a slow buildup of fluid pressure in the eye. When this happens, it reduces the blood supply to the optic nerve, causing a loss of peripheral vision, most times without notice because of the gradual nature. Often it is only after irreparable damage has occurred that a person becomes aware they even have this disease. Since open-angle glaucoma is a chronic condition, it must be monitored for life.

Watch this animation to help you better understand Open Angle Glaucoma.

Narrow Angle (or Closed Angle)

Narrow Angle results from a sudden, complete blockage of fluid drainage, causing a rapid and painful rise in pressure. It can occur at any age, and can cause blindness in a day or two if no treatment is given. Narrow Angle occurs more frequently at night, during emotional stress and even with the use of some over-the-counter medicines such as Dristan, Contac, or Benadryl.

To learn more about this eye disease, go to our YouTube channel for more information:http://bit.ly/1U8k3ci

If you would like to be evaluated by our Fellowship Trained Glaucoma Specialist, Robert Friedman, MD, or one of our board certified eye physicians, please call toll free 1-866-865-2020 or contact The Eye Associates.

 

 

True or False: Everyone Knows What Glaucoma Is

Everyone knows what glaucoma is. –  That is FALSE – A Prevent Blindness America Survey found that 50% had heard of glaucoma, but weren’t sure what it was. Another 30% of people had never even heard of glaucoma. The ones that had heard of glaucoma thought it was easily cured and did not lead to blindness.  In fact, glaucoma is the second leading cause of blindness. And it is often called the ‘silent thief of sight’ because vision loss can occur gradually, without pain and without symptoms. Fortunately, if glaucoma is detected early and properly treated, most vision loss is preventable.(15) 27894850 senior couple cropped

The two most common types of glaucoma are open angle glaucoma and angle closure glaucoma, sometimes referred to as narrow angle glaucoma.

Our eyes have a constant flow of fluid that fills the front chamber of the eye and then drains into the bloodstream. It drains through the ‘angle’ of the eye which is located between the cornea and iris. In primary open angle glaucoma, this drainage system does not function properly, causing a slow buildup of fluid pressure. When this happens, optic nerve damage may occur. As the optic nerve deteriorates, there is a loss of peripheral vision, most times without notice because of the gradual nature in which the deterioration progresses. Often it is only after irreparable vision loss has occurred that a person becomes aware they even have this disease.

Narrow angle glaucoma results from a sudden, complete blockage of fluid drainage from the angle of the eye, causing a rapid and painful rise in pressure. It generally occurs in people over 40 and may cause vision loss rapidly if no treatment is given. Patients may experience severe eye pain accompanied by nausea, redness, swelling of the eye, loss of peripheral vision as well as blurred vision and halos. These symptoms usually last until the eye pressure is lowered. It is important to reduce the pressure quickly because permanent vision loss can occur if the pressure is not reduced in a timely manner.

GET THE FACTS ON GLAUCOMA  at https://www.theeyeassociates.com/services/glaucoma-services/  so everyone knows what glaucoma is. # glaucoma

If you have glaucoma and would like to be evaluated by our Fellowship Trained Glaucoma Specialist, Robert Friedman, MD, or one of our board certified eye physicians, please call toll free 1-866-865-2020 or contact The Eye Associates.

Blindness – a Major Fear


<img alt= "blindness would inhibit bikers taking an early morning ride"

Blindness causing fear of losing the active lifestyle that you now enjoy.

Blindness – Third Biggest Fear

A Prevent Blindness America Survey found that blindness ranked third as a major fear. Number 1 and 2 were cancer and heart disease. Of course, there are ways to prevent vision loss. The best way is to have a yearly comprehensive dilated eye exam. Being proactive always has positive benefits on your health and your eye health.

Common Causes of Blindness

Cataracts are the leading cause of preventable blindness worldwide. Cataract surgery is a very common surgery in the United States, but in less developed countries, people often go blind. This is due to the inaccessibility of eyecare. But even here in the US, we find that since cataracts are slow growing and they usually affect the vision in such a gradual way. Often people are unaware they have them and don’t realize they have such poor vision.

Diabetic retinopathy is another common cause of blindness in people under age 65. Diabetes affects your entire body, including your eyes. According to The American Academy of Ophthalmology, diabetics are 25 times more likely to lose vision than those without this disease. Diabetic retinopathy is the most common complication of diabetes. The longer you have diabetes, the more likely it is that you’ll develop diabetic retinopathy.Many patients with this condition are asymptomatic at its most treatable stage, so diabetics are strongly advised to have routine yearly comprehensive dilated eye examinations.

Another cause of vision loss is glaucoma. Half of all people with glaucoma risk permanent damage because they are unaware that they have it. A comprehensive dilated eye exam is the only way to determine whether these problems are present so appropriate treatment can be initiated.

As you can see, serious and sight-threatening eye diseases do not always present symptoms, but they can be diagnosed during a eye exam. Often treatment can be given before damage occurs. Vision is your most valued of all senses, for everyday activities and even your safety. An eye exam should be part of your yearly schedule. It could save your sight!

Click here or call 1-866-865-2020 for a comprehensive eye exam with one of our Board Certified Physicians.