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Can LASIK Fix Astigmatism?

Posted by Eye Specialists of Louisiana on Tue, Jan 29, 2019 @ 05:32 PM

LASIK for astigmatism

LASIK, laser-assisted in-situ keratomileusis, corrects nearsightedness by flattening the cornea with a laser and treats farsightedness by steepening the cornea.  Astigmatism is a different visual problem. Instead of a normal round cornea you have one that’s more oval like a football, and the curvature causes your blurry vision. LASIK treatment for astigmatism doesn’t flatten or steepen the cornea; it corrects the uneven curvature of your cornea.

 

LASIK vs. Contact Lenses for Astigmatism

LASIK for astigmatism is an excellent option when compared to other alternatives like eyeglasses or contact lenses. Eyeglasses and contacts compensate for the abnormal curvature of the astigmatism with a lens that is curved in the opposite way from the cornea, effectively cancelling out the distortion. Unlike LASIK, these are short-term corrections to the symptoms associated with astigmatism- blurry vision, eyestrain, and headaches. They can also be disorienting since, by definition, these lenses are non-uniform in shape.  Astigmatism contacts can also rotate out of alignment causing blur.  And all contact lenses carry the risk of infection, inflammation, or corneal damage.

PRK and LASEK for Astigmatism

With reshaping the surface of your eyes, temporary fixes like contact lenses or glasses become unnecessary in many cases. There are different types of refractive surgeries. PRK, or photorefractive keratectomy, involves your surgeon removing the outer, protective layer of your cornea before changing its curvature. LASEK, or laser-assisted subepithelial keratomileusis, different from LASIK, involves the folding of an extremely thin layer of the cornea, unlike the slightly thicker flap seen in LASIK.

LASIK for Astigmatism

LASIK for astigmatism involves your surgeon making a thin, small circular hinged cut into your cornea. He or she folds back the hinged flap and then reshapes the cornea using an excimer laser that doesn’t produce any heat. Many people choose to have LASIK for astigmatism over other refractive surgeries because it is very safe and the recovery time is very short.

Since the U.S. Federal Department of Agriculture (FDA) approved LASIK in 1998, its popularity and acceptance as a safe and minimally invasive surgery has grown. In fact, each year thousands of Americans, whether they have LASIK for astigmatism, nearsightedness or farsightedness, have undergone this surgery with great results. The vast majority of LASIK patients achieve perfect or near perfect vision without the use of temporary fixes like eyeglasses or contact lens.  Some LASIK patients may still need to make use of glasses for reading or driving, but LASIK can still provide life altering vision correction.

Before you choose to have LASIK a proper evaluation of the benefits, risks, and anticipated results, along with a consultation and evaluation with a physician, should be completed by each potential LASIK candidate. Numerous factors play into the eligibility of LASIK candidates and every person considering LASIK should make sure that they are able to comply with the post-surgical orders.  For instance, after surgery you shouldn’t rub your eyes. This can wrinkle or displace the thin corneal flap. Also, there may be side effects that tend to fade over time as your cornea heals, such as haziness and difficulty with night vision.

LASIK in Baton Rouge

It’s important to talk to your surgeon or eye care professional about whether or not LASIK is the solution for you.  The doctors at Eye Specialists of Louisiana have years of experience in performing LASIK surgeries.  Our staff would be happy to help any potential LASIK patient weigh their options and evaluate their candidacy for LASIK.  Astigmatism no longer has to have the associated burden of eyeglasses or contact lenses for vision correction.  

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Tags: LASIK, Astigmatism

Top 3 Causes of Vision Loss

Posted by Eye Specialists of Louisiana on Fri, Jan 18, 2019 @ 05:11 PM

causes of vision loss

Vision impairment is a very serious and life-altering condition which impacts a large portion of the American public.  In 2016, the National Health Interview Survey revealed that 25.5 million American adults experience vision loss to some degree.  These individuals either report being blind or having ongoing vision impairment, even when using corrective eyewear such as glasses or contact lenses.  These persistent eyesight problems mean ever growing limitations on their lifestyle and the tasks that they can perform.

While causes of vision loss worldwide are often attributed to living conditions and lack of health care, the leading factors for those in the US are generally age-related.  It’s no secret that our bodies begin to naturally deteriorate over time.  This general weakening of strength and resiliency eventually affects nearly every part of the human body, including the eyes.  There are four main structures which control the function of the eye: the cornea, retina, lens, and optic nerve.  Conditions such as cataracts or macular degeneration which impact any one of these structures, will lead to deteriorating vision and generally occur in the older population.  Unfortunately, once the process of vision loss has begun, there is little that can be done to restore it.  However, with proper care and medical attention, much of the damage can be avoided.

Vision Loss from Cataracts

Cataracts are clouding of the lens of the eye that results in blurriness of vision which will worsen over time. Cataracts are a natural part of the aging process for most, with 50 percent of adults over the age of 80 having them.  They may occur in one or both eyes and can eventually lead to complete blindness if left untreated.  Fortunately, cataract removal surgery and lens replacement is a common and highly effective treatment option.  While many of these surgeries are still done by hand with incredible accuracy, laser options such as the LenSx are increasingly available for improved accuracy and patient comfort. 

 

Vision Loss from Macular Degeneration

The macula is a part of the retina which is responsible for central vision.  It allows you to see fine detail within your direct line of sight and is responsible for being able to see clearly when doing tasks such as reading or driving.  With age, this central portion of the retina can deteriorate and lead to weakened eyesight.  Preventative care with an ophthalmologist is crucial to prevent macular degeneration from reaching an advanced stage.  This condition cannot be ignored, or advancing vision loss will be unavoidable.  Finding an eye doctor to help you control the condition will be the most important step in preserving your eyesight.

 

Vision Loss from Glaucoma

Glaucoma occurs when elevated intraocular pressure (IOP) results in damage to the eye’s optic nerve.  While it may cause no symptoms at first, if left untreated, glaucoma can result in vision loss and blindness.  In fact, it is the leading cause of blindness worldwide.  However, it is also quite preventable.  Regular eye exams can lead to a diagnosis of increased IOP and the potential risk of glaucoma before causing damage to the nerve.  This is critical, because once vision loss from the condition begins, it cannot be reversed.  Fortunately for those who are aware of the disease early on, it is typically controlled quite easily with eye drops to prevent any further vision loss.

Vision loss is a serious problem worldwide, and in many cases, it is largely avoidable.  Regular eye exams and preventative care can mean the difference between preserving eyesight and blindness.  For each of the conditions listed above, the care of a skilled ophthalmologist can help patients avoid worsening of the condition, and in some cases, vision may actually be improved.  For many people, routine or wellness appointments are deemed unnecessary or avoidable.  The truth is that these appointments often hold a greater impact to our health than simply going to the doctor after a medical problem is noticed.

If you are in the Baton Rouge area, schedule an exam with Eye Specialists of LouisianaOur physicians will assess your vision and the overall health of your eyes.  They can answer any questions, address any concerns, and diagnose and treat any conditions that may be present. 

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Tags: Vision Disorders

3 Ways to Improve Eyesight Naturally

Posted by Eye Specialists of Louisiana on Fri, Dec 21, 2018 @ 02:12 PM

improve eyesight naturally

An estimated 75% of the American adult population uses some form of corrective eyewear.  Nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism are just some of the vision hindering conditions that lead many to seek out contact lenses, glasses, or even corrective surgery procedures such as LASIK.   These options are viable for many and can often give patients the vision improvement they have been looking for.  However, equally as important as choosing the appropriate form of vision correction is proper on-going care of your eyes.

 

The eyes are among the body’s most highly functional organs and are nearly constantly in use.  Even during sleep, our eyes go through cycles of rapid eye movement, or REM.  They seldom are at rest.  However, for most, little thought is given to these hardworking body parts or their long-term care until vision problems occur.  Increasingly, our daily habits such as heightened screen time and poor diet are beginning to play a detrimental role in eye health.  Without appropriate care, it is safe to assume that vision will continue to deteriorate over time, at a much more rapid pace. 

Fortunately, in addition to regular eye exams and the various available forms of vision correction, there are a few things that you can do to help keep your eyes strong and healthy naturally:

Eating for Eye Health

As is the case with all organs, nutrition matters.  Proper diet can promote good eye sight by helping to keep eyes strong and healthy.  We’ve previously blogged about some super foods for eye health, but among the most beneficial are those that contain beta carotene, lutein, zinc, DHA, and vitamins A, C, or E.

Exercises for Eye Strength

Eye strain, especially in the digital age, is a common complaint for many patients.  Frequent breaks and exercises are helpful to combat the negative effects.  Try to follow the 20-20-20 rule by taking a break every 20 minutes to focus on an object 20 feet away for at least 20 seconds.  Slowly rolling your eyes may help as well.  Begin with 10 times clockwise, and then switch to 10 times counterclockwise.

Sleep and Healthy Eyes

One of the most effective measures you can take for eye health is to allow adequate time to rest.  Eight hours of sleep each night is ideal for eye health and rejuvenation.  Additionally, when working at a computer or reading for lengthy amounts of time, allow for a full 10 minutes of rest at least once per hour.

Eyesight gradually weakens for us all.  Some may need help with their vision from a very young age, while others may only require reading glasses later in life.  Regardless of the severity of deficiencies in your vision, proper care of your eyes is crucial.  By taking steps to ensure eye health, you can help ward off potentially damaging conditions, while also strengthening eyesight.

To fully protect your eyes, take the steps outlined above and schedule an appointment with your ophthalmologist for an exam.  The physicians at Eye Specialists of Louisiana can help you identify and appropriately address any issues with your vision or eye health.  To contact our office, click here, or call us directly at (225) 768-7777.

 

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Tags: Healthy Eye Tips

Top 3 Things to Consider Before Cataract Surgery

Posted by Eye Specialists of Louisiana on Wed, Dec 12, 2018 @ 12:13 PM

laser cataract surgery baton rouge

If you are considering cataract surgery, you aren’t alone.  About 3 million Americans undergo the procedure each year.  Cataracts are among the most common eye conditions affecting older adults today with an estimated 20.5 million of those over the age of 40 suffering from them to some degree.  The condition, which causes clouding of the eye’s lens, develops slowly over time, but eventually, surgical intervention will be necessary for most to see clearly again.

When the time for surgery does come, there are a few factors that you’ll want to consider to ensure that you’re making the right decision for your particular situation.  As is the case with any medical condition, each case is unique and not all available treatment options will be appropriate for every patient.  For cataract patients, choices in lenses and surgical method are among the three main considerations that should be made before reaching a final decision:

Type of Intraocular Lens

Intraocular lenses (IOLs) mean that patients who undergo cataract surgery no longer have to rely on thick, troublesome glasses or contact lenses after their procedure.  Today, ophthalmologists are able to completely replace the eye’s damaged lens with revolutionary new implants.  For patients at Eye Specialists of Louisiana, the options include several advanced technology premium lenses like the 3 multi-focal lenses: Crystalens, ReStor, and TECNIS.  Unlike traditional monofocal lenses which help with distance vision, these multi-focal options afford patients the ability to see clearly in a range of lighting conditions and at all distances.  Another premium option is the Toric lens which corrects astigmatism in those patients affected by this condition.  These advanced lenses can be used in conjunction with modern surgical techniques to not only eliminate the hazy cataract, but also get rid of the patient's need for glasses.

Traditional vs. Laser Cataract Surgery

For decades, traditional cataract surgery has been performed with increasingly desirable results, thanks in part to advancements in lens options.  Currently, 99.5 percent of patients report no severe postoperative complications, with 98 percent of surgeries being considered a complete success.  However, advancements in technology may offer even greater accuracy and outcomes with the introduction of laser surgery options.  Similar to LASIK advancements, the use of lasers for cataract removal and new lens implants can mean quicker, more comfortable procedures and the possibility of even greater precision.  In Baton Rouge, patients have this option at Eye Specialists of Louisiana with LenSx, the first FDA approved laser for use in cataract surgery.

Who Should Perform Your Cataract Surgery? 

More important even that the type of lens or style of surgery to be used is the surgeon who will perform it.  It’s important to find a skilled ophthalmologist who not only has a long track record of success with your chosen procedure, but one who will also make you feel comfortable and thoroughly cover all options and possible outcomes.  Additionally, you will likely want to find a practice that embraces both proven, traditional tactics for cataract correction, as well as the latest in technological advancements for the best results possible.  Finding your ideal physician should mean that you are not only confident in their abilities, but that they are also able to offer you the most suitable surgical option for your needs.

Undoubtedly, life with cataracts becomes increasingly difficult over time.  As the condition worsens, you will likely find yourself revisiting the possibility of surgery and researching your various options.  Fortunately, the many advancements in technology and the skill of qualified surgeons make this procedure highly successful, and new advancements mean that it will only continue to improve.

If you are currently considering cataract surgery and would like to learn more about all available options, contact our office to schedule a consultation with one of our experienced surgeons.  At Eye Specialists of Louisiana, you will not only find a multitude of surgical options to fit your needs, but a caring staff and doctors to help guide you through the process.  Simply click here to request your appointment, or call us directly at (225) 768-7777.

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Tags: Cataract Surgery

When Should You Get LASIK? [INFOGRAPHIC]

Posted by Eye Specialists of Louisiana on Fri, Nov 16, 2018 @ 12:49 PM

Contact and glasses wearers everywhere dream of a day when they can see clearly without corrective eye wear, when they can wake up and be able to see clearly or pack for a trip without worrying about solutions and cases.  Thankfully, technology has given us a safe and effective way to correct refractive errors with LASIK surgery.  With a quick and painless procedure, an ophthalmologist can deliver the best vision you have experienced in years.  Still, the procedure isn't quite right for everyone.  There are a lot of factors that must be considered before going under the laser.  Patients must consider their age, current prescription, existing medical conditions and financial situation.  In the infographic below, we outline six factors that must be taken into account before pursing LASIK:

Eye spec when lasik infographic

Still think LASIK may be right for you?  Contact our office to schedule a consultation where all of your questions and concerns can be addressed, and click on the image below to download our free LASIK eye surgery guide.

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Tags: LASIK

16 Reason To Visit An Ophthalmologist

16 Reasons To Visit An Ophthalmologist

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