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Age-Related Macular Degeneration

Macular degeneration is a disease associated with aging that can gradually reduce central vision and comes in two forms – it may be referred to as AMD or ARMD (age-related macular degeneration).  The dry (non-neovascular form of the disease typically has few symptoms in its early phase, but can become progressively symptomatic over an extended period of time.  The wet (neovascular) stage, is more severe and can cause rapid severe vision loss if left untreated.  Early detection when the disease is still in the dry stages, can be helpful to prevent severe vision loss.

Dry macular degeneration affects between 85 to 90 percent of ARMD patients, with wet macular degeneration affecting just 10 percent of ARMD cases.  People over the age of 65 and Caucasian women are at a higher risk for macular degeneration.  Smokers have a higher rate of […]

What is Central Serous Retinopathy?

Central Serous Retinopathy (CSR) sometimes referred to as central serous choroidopathy, is an eye disease that causes visual impairment and usually occurs in one eye and is often temporary.  Characterized by leakage of fluid under the retina, CSR has the propensity to accumulate under the central macula when active.  Fluid leakage is believed to come from the choroid (a tissue layer with blood vessels under the retina).  When tiny areas of the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) become defective, fluid builds up and accumulates under the RPE – this causes a small detachment to form under the retina.  CRE usually affects just one eye, but has the possibility of affecting both eyes.

Symptoms of CSR

Distorted, blurred, or dim vision
Blind spot in central vision
Distortion of straight lines in the affected eye
White objects may appear to have a brownish tinge or may be […]

Corneal Erosion

The cornea is composed of five layers.

Epithelium Layer – an exceedingly thin surface layer of cells in the cornea’s outermost region, comprising about 10 percent of the tissue’s thickness.  Its primary function is to block the passage of foreign material and provide a smooth surface that absorbs oxygen and cell nutrients from tears and then distributes them to the rest of the cornea.

Bowman’s Layer – compromised of strong layered protein fibers called collagen, the Bowman’s layer is a tough layer of basement membrane that keeps the cornea from swelling forward.

Stroma – Compromising about 90% of the cornea’s thickness, the stroma consists of 79% water and 16% highly arranged collagen fibers and supporting keratocytes, and contains no blood vessels.  The collagen gives the cornea its strength, elasticity, and form

Descemet’s Membrane – located below the stroma, Descemet’s membrane is a thin […]

Corneal Abrasion vs Laceration

The cornea is the transparent layer forming the front of the eye that transmits and focuses light into the eye.  A corneal abrasion is a scratch to the surface of the cornea.  Symptoms of a corneal abrasion and corneal laceration include redness, pain, light sensitivity, excessive squinting, and the feeling of a foreign body in the eye.  With a corneal laceration, the pain will be more severe.

Corneal abrasions are typically caused by minor trauma to the eye and may occur with contact lens use when a fingernail scratches or pokes your eye, or if something like dirt, sand, or sawdust, or some other foreign body gets trapped under your eyelid.  Corneal abrasions can also be caused by rubbing your eye too hard, wearing old contact lenses, and while participating in other everyday activities.  About 25% of corneal abrasions occur […]

Blocked Tear Duct: Causes & Symptoms

Most of your tears originate from your lacrimal glands, or tear and conjunctiva.  These glands continuously supply the fluid we call tears onto the surface of your eyes each time you blink.  Excess tears or fluid drains through the tear ducts down into the nose.  When your tear duct is either partially or completely obstructed, tears cannot drain normally resulting in a back-flow or watery eye.  Blocked tear ducts are common in newborns (congenital blocked tear duct) and usually heals without any treatment during the first year of life.  In adults, blocked tear ducts are typically caused by an obstruction and narrowing leading to infection – rarely is a tumor present

Other causes of a blocked tear duct:

Nose trauma
Age-related changes can cause the punctal openings, that drain tears, to become narrow resulting in blockage
Conjunctivitis – inflammation and infection of the […]

November is Diabetic Eye Disease Awareness Month

Diabetic eye disease is a group of eye problems that people with diabetes may face as a complication of the disease.  Anyone with diabetes is at risk for vision loss or blindness from diabetic eye disease.  Unfortunately, diabetic eye disease has no warning signs, however, early detection and timely treatment can help reduce the risks.  An annual, comprehensive dilated eye examination is one of the best ways to detect early signs of diabetic eye disease.  Taking your diabetic medication as prescribed, maintaining a healthy diet, staying physically active, maintaining a healthy weight, and refraining from smoking can also help control your diabetes which lessens your risks of diabetic eye disease.

Ways that diabetic eye disease may affect your eyes:

Cataract: Clouding of the lens of the eye
Diabetic retinopathy: damage to the blood vessels in the retina
Glaucoma: increases the fluid pressure inside […]

Bacterial Keratitis Causes and Symptoms

Bacterial keratitis is a serious infection of the cornea and is often referred to as a ‘corneal ulcer’.  Symptoms include reduced vision, light sensitivity, pain and excessive tearing or discharge from your eye.  It is typically caused by contact lens use (especially, overnight wear and inadequate lens disinfection), but may be also be caused by:

Using contaminated eye medicine or other solutions in the eye
Recent corneal disease
Reduced immunity due to diabetes, poor nutrition, or alcoholism
Trauma or injury of the eye
Use of topical steroids

The types of bacteria responsible for a keratitis infection:

Staphylococcus Aureus (contact lens wearers)
Pseudomonas Aeruginosa

Bacterial keratitis can involve the uppermost layers of the cornea “superficial bacterial keratitis” or, affect deeper corneal layers “deep bacterial keratitis”.  When superficial keratitis heals, there is usually no scar left on the cornea.

In severe cases of deep bacterial keratitis where the center of the […]