VisionSource! - North America's Premier Network of Private Practice Optometrists
  

 

We provide diagnosis, treatment and management of many diseases which affect the human eye and visual system.  Some examples include:

 

Dry Eye Syndrome

In dry eye syndrome, also known as Keratoconjunctivitis Sicca, the lacrimal gland or associated glands in the lid margins don't produce enough tears, or the tears that are produced have a composition that allows them to evaporate too quickly causing the eyes to feel dry, irritated, or gritty.

 

There are many causes for dry eye syndrome. It can occur as a part of the natural aging process, especially during menopause.  More commonly, however, it can be caused due to the use of many medications, such as antihistamines, antidepressants, certain blood pressure medicines, Parkinson's medications and birth control pills; or because you live in a dry, dusty or windy climate.

If your home or office has air conditioning or a dry heating system, that too can dry out your eyes. Another cause is insufficient blinking, such as when you're staring at a computer screen all day.

Dry eyes also are a symptom of systemic diseases such as lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, ocular rosacea or Sjogren's syndrome (a triad of dry eyes, dry mouth and rheumatoid arthritis or lupus).

Long-term contact lens wear is another cause; in fact, dry eyes are the most common complaint among contact lens wearers.

Recent research indicates that contact lens wear and dry eyes can be a vicious cycle. Dry eye syndrome makes contact lenses feel uncomfortable, and evaporation of moisture from contact lenses worsens dry eye symptoms.

Incomplete closure of the eyelids, eyelid disease and a deficiency of the tear-producing glands are other causes.

Tears are composed of three layers:
  • the outer, oily lipid layer;
  • the middle, watery, lacrimal layer;
  • and the inner, mucous or mucin layer.

Each layer is produced by different glands near the eye. The lacrimal gland located above the outer corner of the eye produces the lacrimal layer, for example. So a problem with any of those sources can result in dry eyes.

Dry eye syndrome is more common in women, possibly due to hormone fluctuations. A recent study also indicates that the risk of dry eyes among men increases with age.

Recent research suggests that smoking, too, can increase your risk of dry eye syndrome.

With increased popularity of cosmetic eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty) for improved appearance, dry eye complaints now occasionally are associated with incomplete closure of eyelids following such a procedure.

 

 

 

 

Keratoconus is a disorder that occurs when the cornea, which is typically rounded, becomes cone-shaped.  The progression is usually slow and can stop at any stage from mild to severe.  This distortion increases as the cornea bulges and thins.  The apex of the cornea often scars, reducing the vision.  Treatment of Keratoconus is most effective with gas permeable contact lenses, designed specifically for the irregular corneal surface.  If contact lens treatment is not successful, surgical corneal transplant may be necessary.

 

 

 

Diabetic Retinopathy  is a condition when a diabetic persons blood sugar gets too high.  High blood sugar levels start a series of events which end in damaged blood vessel walls.  As such, the blood vessels begin to leak fluid or bleed, causing the retina to swell and form deposits know as exudates.  Vision can be lost if these spots are not watched and treated.  Here, at our office, we carefully examine the back of your eyes to follow and manage this and other important eye diseases.

 

 

 

Cataract is a clouding or opacity of the natural internal lens of the eye.  This opacity may be a small spot or may cover the entire lens.  When light enters the eye it is scattered, causing images to appear hazy and blurred.  There are many different types of cataracts.  The one shown here is a cortical cataract.  Here the opacity forms first is the periphery of the lens and develops inward, like spokes of a wheel.  Ultimately, the best  treatment is to remove the cataract lens and replace it with an acrylic man made lens.  This is referred to as cataract surgery.

 

 

 

Macular Degeneration is a condition in which the central part of the back of the eye loses blood circulation.  It is considered a natural aging process.  There is a breakdown of retinal pigment epithelium cells in the macular region.  As the disease progresses, central vision diminishes.  It is believed that this breakdown may be due to a lack of nutrients being supplied to the region. Additional studies have found a genetic link to this disease.  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.