Our doctors at Wise Optometry provides diagnosis, treatment and management of ocular disease and anomalies that affect the human eye and visual system. Make your appointment today by calling our office at (626) 363-4991.
Common Eye Disease
Conjunctivitis, or pink eye, is an irritation or inflammation of the conjunctiva, which covers the white part of the eyeball. It can be caused by allergies or a bacterial or viral infection. Conjunctivitis can be extremely contagious, and is spread by contact with eye secretions from someone who is infected. Symptoms include redness, itching, and tearing of the eyes. It can also lead to discharge or crusting around the eyes. It's important to stop wearing contact lenses while affected by conjunctivitis. It often resolves on its own, but treatment can speed the recovery process. Allergic conjunctivitis can be treated with antihistamines. Bacterial conjunctivitis can be treated with antibiotic eye drops.
Styes and Chalazia
A stye can develop after the small glands that line the eyelid get plugged. Styes are often filled with pus. Sometimes a stye can form on the inner part of the eyelid. In most cases, a stye will begin to disappear on its own in a few days. A warm washcloth applied to the eyelid may relieve pain and discomfort.
A chalazion is most common in adults ages 30 to 50 who also have rosacea or blepharitis. A chalazion may feel like a small, painless bead in the eyelid at first. Over a few days, it may get bigger, red, and rubbery, but remain painless. Some chalazions may not need treatment. Hot compresses may help larger ones. A lasting chalazion may need to be removed by a doctor.
Dry eye syndrome is caused by a chronic lack of sufficient lubrication and moisture on the surface of the eye. Consequences of dry eyes range from subtle but constant eye irritation to significant inflammation and even scarring of the front surface of the eye.
With all types of glaucoma, the nerve connecting the eye to the brain is damaged, usually due to high eye pressure. The most common type of glaucoma (open-angle glaucoma) often has no symptoms other than slow vision loss. Angle-closure glaucoma, although rare, is a medical emergency and its symptoms include eye pain with nausea and sudden visual disturbance. Treatment includes eye drops, medications, and surgery.
Diabetic Eye Disease
Diabetic retinopathy is caused by damage to the blood vessels in the tissue at the back of the eye (retina). Poorly controlled blood sugar is a risk factor. Early symptoms include floaters, blurriness, dark areas of vision, and difficulty perceiving colors. Blindness can occur. Mild cases may be treated with careful diabetes management. Advanced cases may require laser treatment or surgery.
Flashes and Floaters
Floaters look like small specks, dots, circles, lines or cobwebs in your field of vision. While they seem to be in front of your eye, they are floating inside. Floaters are tiny clumps of gel or cells inside the vitreous that fills your eye. What you see are the shadows these clumps cast on your retina. You usually notice floaters when looking at something plain, like a blank wall or a blue sky. As we age, our vitreous starts to thicken or shrink. Sometimes clumps or strands form in the vitreous. If the vitreous pulls away from the back of the eye, it is called posterior vitreous detachment. Floaters usually happen with posterior vitreous detachment. They are not serious, and they tend to fade or go away over time. Severe floaters can be removed by surgery, but this is seldom necessary.
The treatment for floaters and flashes depends on the underlying condition. While not all floaters and flashes are serious, you should always have a medical eye examination by an eye doctor to make sure there has been no damage to your retina.
While some floaters may remain in your vision, many of them will fade over time and become less bothersome. Even if you have had some floaters for years, you should have an eye examination immediately if you notice new ones.
There is no specific treatment for separation of the vitreous gel from the retina although laser or freezing therapy or surgery may be required for retinal tears.
Macular degeneration causes loss in the center of the field of vision. In dry macular degeneration, the center of the retina deteriorates. With wet macular degeneration, leaky blood vessels grow under the retina. Blurred vision is a key symptom. A special combination of vitamins and minerals (AREDS formula) may reduce disease progression. Surgery may also be an option.