Glossary

Cataract a clouding of the eye’s natural lens that generally occurs with age. Although corrective lenses may be helpful during the early stages of cataract development, the only treatment is to remove the natural lens and replace it with an artificial one. Some symptoms of cataracts include cloudy vision and increased glare especially with night time driving.

Macular Degeneration a condition that affects central vision and occurs with aging. This is a leading cause of blindness in persons over the age of 65. The macula is the center of the retina responsible for central vision and fine detail. A breakdown of retinal cells in the macular region causes progressive loss of central vision including things like faces. Studies have found a genetic link to this disease, so people with a family history or macular degeneration should be monitored yearly. Treatment can range from better nutritional management, sometimes to include a tablet containing the primary minerals and vitamins that are found lacking in many macular degenerated patients.

Glaucoma damage to the optic nerve resulting from high intraocular pressure. Glaucoma is a silent but progressive and irreversible eye disease that is caused by a blockage in the eye’s drainage system. Early detection of glaucoma is vital to effective management of the disease. There are no symptoms of glaucoma until vision is lost in the late stages of the disease, therefore it is essential to monitor yearly especially if you have a family history. Glaucoma cannot be cured, but its effects can be managed through medication or surgery.

Diabetic Retinopathy having Type I or Type II diabetes can directly affect your vision. Diabetic retinopathy causes changes in vision when blood vessels in the retina become damaged due to the effects of diabetes. The blood vessels may swell and leak into the retina or new and abnormal blood vessels may begin to grow and eventually rupture, damaging the retina. In the early stages, diabetic retinopathy has no symptoms. Over time, the condition can progress to cause vision loss or even blindness. It is essential for everyone with diabetes to have yearly dilated eye exams to monitor retinal changes. The best treatment is to maintain appropriate blood sugar levels and avoid any retinal damage but once retinal changes have occurred laser treatments are highly effective in slowing the progression of the disease. These treatments are most effective when the condition is detected early. In the case of more advanced forms of diabetic retinopathy may benefit from treatment, but there is no guarantee that vision can be restored.

Myopia commonly known as Nearsighted. This a condition of the eyes in which the patient is unable to see objects far away with clarity, but is able to see objects near to their face. The higher the myopia, the closer the patient must be to an object to see it clearly when not wearing glasses

Hyperopia commonly known as Farsighted. This is a condition in which the eyes must constantly focus images to see clearly. It is easier to focus distance images than near images resulting in poorer near visual acuity without glasses. This focusing causes the eyes to become fatigued and may cause headaches and eyestrain with prolonged near work.

Astigmatism commonly described as an eye shaped more like a football than a baseball. It can cause blur and distortions of images both far away and at close reading distances. Astigmatism is a common cause of headaches and eyestrain.

Presbyopia known as age-related farsightedness. This is a condition that typically develops in persons over the age of 40 and is caused by a decrease in the flexibility of the eye’s natural lens. As presbyopia develops, the patient may notice a delay in the eye’s ability to switch from focusing on distant objects to near ones, and vice versa, followed by a gradually diminishing ability to focus on objects that are close-up.

Pink Eye clinically pink eye is called conjunctivitis. There are many possible types of conjunctivitis including bacterial, viral and allergic. Any time you suspect pink eye you should be seen, since some forms are contagious and should be treatment with medication as soon as possible.

Dry Eye Syndrome occurs when the normal flow of tears over the eyes is interrupted, or the tear film is abnormal. Dry eye syndrome can be a lifelong struggle. But it is possible to relieve the symptoms. Artificial tear lubricants or in some cases blocking the tear ducts will concentrate the limited tears that are available.

Amblyopia also known as a lazy eye. This typically develops in children and must be addressed early to prevent permanent complications. Pediatric eye exams are especially important because children do not typically recognize that they have a problem with their vision. Approximately 3% of children and young adults have amblyopia. If detected early, this condition can be treated with eyeglasses, patching an eye and/or using eye drops.

Glossary

Cataract a clouding of the eye’s natural lens that generally occurs with age. Although corrective lenses may be helpful during the early stages of cataract development, the only treatment is to remove the natural lens and replace it with an artificial one. Some symptoms of cataracts include cloudy vision and increased glare especially with night time driving.

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