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Preventing and Treating Age-Related Vision Problems in Baton Rouge

Posted by Eye Specialists of Louisiana on Fri, May 17, 2019 @ 11:21 PM

Preventing and treating age-related vision problems in baton rouge.jpegYou’re getting older. It’s true. We all are. Sure, you’re on the other side of 60, but you exercise regularly, eat well, and do your best to care for your body and mind so that they continue to age gracefully. Are you doing the same for your eyes?

Diagnosing Glaucoma in Baton Rouge

Glaucoma, or the “silent vision thief”, works quietly and slowly to cause permanent vision loss in its sufferers. If you are suffering from glaucoma, you may only notice a little blurriness in your peripheral vision—and only after permanent vision loss has occurred. Eye doctors, however, can detect indicators of glaucoma, like optic nerve damage and elevated eye pressure before any other symptoms occur. That’s why it is imperative to have regular eye exams. Along with medication, glaucoma is normally treated with one of four surgical treatment options, all of which are offered at Eye Specialists of Louisiana.

Identifying and Treating Cataracts in Baton Rouge

Cataracts are caused when protein builds up and clumps in the lens of the eye, preventing light from passing through and resulting in vision loss. If left untreated, the older cells will compact as the new lens cells form and create a cataract in the center of the lens. Cataracts can cause blurriness, a yellow tint in your vision, sensitivity to light, double vision, and haloes around light sources.

While heredity, smoking, and existing conditions can play a role in their development, cataracts can also develop naturally as a result of aging. Cataracts are treated by surgically removing the impacted lens and replacing it with an artificial lens implant. If you believe you are developing cataracts, schedule a comprehensive eye exam today. The sooner your cataracts are treated, the sooner you can get back to seeing the world in living color.

Detecting Age-Related Macular Degeneration in Baton Rouge

The leading cause of severe vision loss in Americans over the age of 60, age-related macular degeneration occurs when the central portion of the retina, or macula, deteriorates. Dry macular degeneration occurs when yellow deposits (drusen) accumulate in the macula, leading to a noticeable dimming or distortion of vision. If left untreated, dry macular degeneration can lead to atrophy of retinal tissue, blind spots, and complete loss of central vision. Wet macular degeneration is characterized by the growth of abnormal blood vessels from the choroid under the macula, leading to choroidal neovascularization. This new blood vessels then leak fluid and blood into the retina causing distorted vision, as well as loss of central vision. If left untreated, these abnormal blood vessels and the associated bleeding can eventually form a scar, leading to permanent central vision loss. The first noticeable sign of AMD is a dim, blurry spot in the center of your vision that gets bigger or darker over time. However, your ophthalmologist can detect the presence of drusen much sooner.

Once detected, AMD can be treated with vitamins, laser therapy, and vison aids. Patients with advanced cases of AMD may benefit from the revolutionary Centrasight treatment, which involves implanting a tiny telescope inside the eye to enlarge objects in the central vision and compensate for macular degeneration. To find out if you qualify for this outpatient procedure, schedule a consultation with Dr. Thomas Stuckey, the only surgeon in the Baton Rouge area to specialize in Centrasight’s advanced technology.

In addition to the vision disorders and diseases detailed above, diabetic retinopathy and retinal vessel occlusion can also benefit from early detection by a trained eye specialist.

 

10 Things You Should Know About Cataracts

 

Tags: Cataracts, Glaucoma, Macular Degeneration

Surgical Treatment Options for Glaucoma

Posted by Eye Specialists of Louisiana on Tue, May 24, 2016 @ 12:11 PM

Glaucoma_treatment_Options.jpeg

It doesn’t happen quickly. Maybe you notice a little blurriness in your periphery. By then, you’ve already suffered permanent vision loss. Glaucoma—the “silent vision thief”—works quietly.

While you may only be aware of a little peripheral blurriness, your ophthalmologist will be able to detect other signs and symptoms of open-angle glaucoma—such as optic nerve damage or elevated eye pressure—which is why it is imperative to have regular eye exams. Now some glaucoma sufferers do exhibit symptoms, such as halos around light, pain/redness of the eye, and tunnel vision. These are normally signs of angle closure glaucoma. Angle closure glaucoma occurs when the iris bulges forward to narrow or block the drainage angle formed by the cornea and iris. When this occurs, aqueous fluid in the eye can no longer drain properly.

If you have been diagnosed with open-angle or angle-closure glaucoma, it’s time to discuss your treatment options. Along with medication, please discuss surgical options with your ophthalmologist.

Here are four of the surgical options we offer at Eye Specialists of Louisiana:

Selective Laser Trabeculoplasty (SLT) is a laser that treats the drain directly to help increase the outflow of fluid. It treats specific cells "selectively”. For this reason, SLT may be safely repeated. It is not painful and can be an alternative to eye drops in early open-angle glaucoma.

Laser Peripheral Iridotomy (LPI) treats angle-closure glaucoma by creating a small hole in the iris, allowing it to fall away from the drainage angle and unblock the drain.

Endoscopic Cyclophotocoagulation (ECP) is a recent development in the treatment of various types of glaucoma. In this procedure, the ciliary body—the part of the eye responsible for producing fluid—is targeted with a precision laser. The energy generated by the laser effectively reduces fluid production. As the volume of fluid decreases, so does the IntraOcular pressure and the complications it can create.

Tube-Shunt Surgery involves placing a flexible plastic tube with an attached silicone drainage pouch in the eye to help drain fluid (aqueous humor) from the eye. This type of surgery is usually done after a failed trabeculectomy. If a person already has or is likely to form scar tissue in the eye, this type of surgery may be done initially.

If you’re struggling with glaucoma, click here, or call us directly at (225) 768-7777 to learn about your treatment options and request a consultation today.

 16 Reasons To Visit An Ophthalmologist

 

 

 

 

Tags: Glaucoma

What That Air Puff Test is Telling Your Doctor

Posted by Eye Specialists of Louisiana on Wed, Apr 01, 2015 @ 05:17 PM

air puff test

For anyone who has had an eye exam, you’ll immediately know what the “air puff test” is.  Chances are, you aren’t that crazy about it.  It’s startling, and we understand that it can be an annoyance.  There are even patients who attempt to bypass it entirely.  While it may be unpleasant, that puff of air was actually designed to tell your eye doctor something very important to your eye health.

Intraocular Pressure

That air puff test, also known as the non-contact tonometry (NCT) test, is a tool used to help your doctor determine your eye’s level of intraocular pressure (IOP).  The degree of pressure within the eye is determined by the balance of fluid creation and fluid drainage by the ocular structures.  This fluid system is very important. It helps maintain the shape of the eye while also nourishing the cornea, lens, and iris.  To keep this fluid moving smoothly, the eye is equipped with a sophisticated drainage system.  However, there are times when this drainage system does not operate as it should. 

When ocular fluid cannot properly drain, the pressure buildup may reach unsafe levels.  Unfortunately for patients, there are typically no warning signs of high IOP until irreversible damage has already occurred.  Sustained, elevated levels of IOP can lead to damage of the optic nerve, resulting in permanent vision loss and glaucoma.  For these reasons, testing IOP is essential.

Alternative Tests

Fortunately for those who dread the air puff test, technology has afforded us with more comfortable and effective options:

Tono-Pen – The tono-pen is a handheld device about the size and shape of a large marker.  An ophthalmologist can place this device against the eye to receive a digital reading of the eye’s IOP.

Goldmann – Considered by most to be the most accurate tool for measuring IOP, the Goldmann tonometer is used in conjunction with the slit lamp.  You’ll recognize the slit lamp as the device against which you place your chin and forehead while your doctor uses an intense, narrow beam of light to examine the interior of the eye.  With the Goldmann tonometer, a special prism is used along with the slit lamp to place pressure against the cornea.  This pressure is slowly adjusted until a precise reading of IOP can be determined.

With both the tono-pen and Goldmann, not only is there no startling puff of air, but numbing drops are also used to ensure the patient’s complete comfort.  With these methods, ophthalmologists can still monitor crucial levels of IOP without using the test that so many patients have come to dread.

For those in the Baton Rouge area, the team of ophthalmologists at Eye Specialists of Louisiana can help monitor and maintain all aspects of eye health including intraocular pressure.  To request your appointment, simply click here, or call us directly at (225) 768-7777.

16 Reasons To Visit An Ophthalmologist

Tags: Glaucoma

Reasons Your Loved One Should be Screened for Glaucoma

Posted by Eye Specialists of Louisiana on Tue, Feb 10, 2015 @ 11:49 AM

glaucoma screening in Baton Rouge

January marked National Glaucoma Awareness Month.  While most are familiar with the condition, few realize how common it is or the grave impact it can have.  Currently, glaucoma is the world’s second leading cause of blindness, despite being easily detected through routine eye examinations.  In the United States alone, more than 2.7 million adults over the age of 40 live with the disease.  Even more frightening, an estimated half of those afflicted don’t even realize they have it.  If you or a loved one meet certain risk factors, glaucoma screening is an important part of maintaining eye health.  Here is what you should know:

  • What is Glaucoma?Glaucoma is a condition which causes damage to the eye’s optic nerve, leading to increasingly impaired vision over time.  Typically, this damage is the result of high intraocular pressure (IOP) when fluid within the eye known as aqueous humor does not circulate properly throughout the front of the eye.

  • Types of Glaucoma – There are two distinct forms of glaucoma: open-angle and angle-closure.  Open-angle is the more common of the two, in which no abnormal eye structure can be identified for the poor circulation of fluid.  Angle-closure, however, is more prominent in Asia and is marked by a narrow angle between the iris and cornea, inhibiting adequate flow of aqueous humor.

  • Risk Factors – Adults over the age of 60 are at increased risk for many eye conditions, including glaucoma.  Individuals of African American, Hispanic, or Asian heritage are also more susceptible, as are diabetics, those who are severely nearsighted, and anyone with a family history of the disease.

  • Benefits of Screening – While damage done by glaucoma is irreversible, it is possible to minimize the symptoms and progression when the condition is detected early and treated properly.  Once identified, your ophthalmologist can take steps to ensure that IOP remains at a safe level.  Typical treatment options for glaucoma include eye drops, microsurgery, and laser surgery.

Given the ability to detect and treat glaucoma, it’s a condition that should never rob a patient of their sight.  Unfortunately, too many are uninformed of the true danger of the disease and the very simple steps that can be taken to halt its progression.  If you or a loved one meet any of the risk factors outlined above, it may be time to schedule a screening. 

In Baton Rouge, the ophthalmologists of Eye Specialists of Louisiana offer years of experience in the treatment of a wide range of eye conditions, including glaucoma.  To request an appointment, click here, or call our office directly at (225) 768-7777.

16 Reasons To Visit An Ophthalmologist

Tags: Glaucoma

Glaucoma: What You Need to Know

Posted by Eye Specialists of Louisiana on Wed, Mar 19, 2014 @ 04:20 PM

Glaucoma Baton Rouge

There are a few prominent eye diseases which may result in vision loss, particularly in older patients.  The most well-known of these are cataracts, macular degeneration, and of course, glaucoma.  Unfortunately, there is a great amount of misunderstanding and lack of knowledge when it comes to these, especially glaucoma.  While most have heard of it, very few patients are familiar with the effects of the disease and who is most likely to be impacted by it.  The sad truth is that many glaucoma patients are unaware of their risk until some damage has already been done.  In fact it is believed that only half of the estimated 2.2 million Americans with glaucoma even know that they have it.

The dangers of undiagnosed or untreated glaucoma are very real.  According to the World Health Organization, it is the second leading cause of blindness worldwide, and it accounts for over 120,000 cases of blindness in the U.S.  Early detection and treatment are critical to prevent permanent and irreversible vision loss.  Here are just a few facts that everyone should know about the disease:

  • Anyone Can Get It – While glaucoma is most commonly found in adults over the age of 40, anyone from infants to senior citizens can develop the condition.   Babies may even be born with it due to distorted drainage systems of the eye.  The only way to know for sure is to have an eye exam by an ophthalmologist to check the level of intraocular pressure (IOP) within the eye.

  • African Americans are at Higher Risk – While the reasons why are still unclear, African Americans are at a greater risk of developing glaucoma.  In fact, blindness from the disease is 6-8 times more likely in African Americans than Caucasians, meaning that this group should be especially vigilant about testing and regular eye exams.  Other factors that may increase an individual’s risk are being over the age of 40, having a family history of glaucoma, having diabetes, and taking certain steroid medications.

  • There Are Often No Symptoms – For the majority of glaucoma patients there will be few or no symptoms to warn them of the onset of the disease.  It is typically not until loss of peripheral, or side vision, occurs that the problem is noticed.  For those who do have symptoms, these may include halos around light, pain or redness of the eye, and tunnel vision.

  • It Can be Controlled – Unfortunately, the effects of glaucoma cannot be reversed.  Any vision loss from the condition will be permanent.  However, by identifying it early, the progression and symptoms may be controlled.  As long as proper treatment is followed to reduce and maintain lower levels of IOP, most patients will avoid blindness.  The most common treatment options currently include eye drops, laser surgery, and microsurgery.

Glaucoma can have devastating consequences, but it is fortunately easily controlled once detected.  A simple dilated eye exam can quickly give an ophthalmologist the detail he or she needs to make a diagnosis.  Yet, it is estimated that less than half of all American adults are receiving these tests, and only 74 percent receive an eye exam at least every two years.  In order to keep this condition at bay and prevent blindness, patients must be proactive.  Simple eye exams and painless screening measures are all that is needed to protect your eyesight from glaucoma.

If you are in the Baton Rouge area and would like to schedule an eye exam or to assess your risk for glaucoma, contact Eye Specialists of LouisianaOur physicians have years of experience in both the diagnosis and treatment of the condition.  To request your appointment, simply click here, or call us directly at (225) 768-7777.

16 Reasons To Visit An Ophthalmologist

Tags: Glaucoma

16 Reason To Visit An Ophthalmologist

16 Reasons To Visit An Ophthalmologist

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