• Vision Like You’ve Never Seen Before

March is National Nutrition Awareness

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March is National Nutrition Month. Making better nutritional choices can lead to better eye health and better overall health. Foods rich in vitamins C and E, zinc, lutein, zeaxanthin, and omega-3 fatty acids DHA and EPA are good for eye health, according to the Age-Related Eye Diseases Study (AREDS) and other large research studies. Eye-healthy food choices include citrus fruits, vegetable oils, nuts, whole grains, dark green leafy vegetables, and cold water fish. Patients with Age-Related Macular Degeneration should ask their doctor if they may benefit from a specific formula of vitamin supplements called the AREDS II formula vitamins. Finally, diabetic patients can preserve their long-term vision by keeping their blood glucose under control with a low glycemic-index diet.


Macular Degeneration Awareness Month

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February is macular degeneration awareness month. Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is one of the leading causes of decreased vision in the United States. As its name suggests, this disease is more common with increasing age, and it affects an area in the back part of the eye called the macula. The macula is the central portion of the retina, which is a thin layer in the back of the eye that is necessary for sight. The macula controls your central vision. It is what allows us to read, see people’s faces, and distinguish colors. In its severe stages, macular degeneration can cause a loss of this central vision.
Risk factors for macular degeneration include: increasing age, family history of AMD, cigarette smoking, Caucasian ethnicity, high blood pressure, high cholesterol; and possibly female gender and light blue eyes. While there is no “cure” for macular degeneration there are treatments that may benefit certain patients. There are two main types of macular degeneration, dry and wet. About 90% of people with AMD have the dry type. The dry type is generally slowly progressive, and can sometimes be treated with certain eye vitamins to slow this progression. The wet type can get worse very quickly and may need additional treatments such as laser procedures or injections of medicine. Patients with severe macular degeneration can have a significant loss of central vision in both eyes and may benefit from seeing a Low-Vision specialist to find tools to help them with their daily visual needs. If you have a family history of macular degeneration or some of the other risk factors listed above call today to schedule an appointment with one of our doctors for an evaluation.


Eye Anatomy – Part 3: The Retina & Optic Nerve

Posted on by Angela Walsh in blog Comments Off on Eye Anatomy – Part 3: The Retina & Optic Nerve

Welcome to Part 3 of our Eye Anatomy blog series! In this post we are going to talk about the Retina and the Optic Nerve.

The Retina:

The retina is a very important part of sight that senses the light that comes into your eyes. It is made up of many cells, one of which is called a photoreceptor. The center of the retina, which is called the macula, is the most sensitive part of your vision, because it has millions of tightly packed photoreceptors in a small area. This densely packed are of photoreceptors makes visual images detailed, just as higher counts of megapixels in a digital camera allow for HD images.

 

Some common eye conditions and diseases related to the Retina are:

 

The Optic Nerve:

The optic nerve is the nerve that connects your eye to your brain. It carries the signals that are given off by light hitting the retina. It is made up of more than 1 million never fibers. The optic nerve can be damaged in diseases like glaucoma, which is believed to be caused by high eye pressures.

 

Please let us know if you have questions or comments regarding this post.  We care about you and your eyes!  Until next time!

 

 


Can I Fly With This Eye?

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Can I Fly With This Eye?
Written by: Dan Gudgel
Reviewed by: Raj K Maturi MD
Jan. 03, 2017
Learn what eye conditions should keep you on the ground and which won’t interfere with air travel
The American Academy of Ophthalmology often gets questions about whether recovery from eye surgery or having a specific condition means that the patient shouldn’t fly. If you have questions about your eye health, you should talk to your own ophthalmologist. But it’s important to know that there are some times when air travel really could be a danger to your eyes.

If you’ve had any kind of surgery, talk to your doctor about your travel plans. Find out what to expect after your surgery, so you know if you’re having a serious symptom. Consider staying close to home for a few days — or as long as recommended by your doctor — in case a problem comes up. And always keep your follow-up appointments so your doctor can make sure that you are healing as expected.

If you have been diagnosed with an eye condition, ask your ophthalmologist if there are activities you should limit or avoid. Make sure you understand the doctor’s recommendations and ask questions about specific activities if you’re unsure.

Can I fly after retina repair surgery?
If you’ve had your retina repaired, you should only fly when your doctor says it’s safe. To repair a detached or torn retina, the ophthalmologist often has to inject a gas bubble to hold the retina in place while it heals. A gas bubble in the eye can expand dangerously if the patient flies, goes scuba diving or undergoes any other major air pressure change. If the gas expands inside the eye, it can cause serious damage and blindness. You should stay at about the altitude of your surgery until your doctor has confirmed that the gas bubble is gone. Unlike a gas bubble, there are generally no restrictions for flying with a silicone oil bubble

Can I fly after cataract surgery?
Normal cataract surgery would not pose any problems for air travel, even right away. Once your doctor has cleared you for normal activities, flying is fine. Just don’t miss your follow-up appointments.

What about flying after complicated cataract surgery?
Even if the cataract surgery was more challenging or had complications, flying should be fine, unless air or gas had to be placed in the eye as part of the surgery.

When can I fly after surgery for glaucoma?
Whether it’s a peripheral iridotomy, laser trabeculoplasty, shunt implantation or another surgery for glaucoma, the pressure change from flying usually isn’t a concern after glaucoma surgery. You should be able to fly the next day. But talk to your doctor to get approval for your particular case, and follow up as necessary after the surgery

Is flying OK after a corneal transplant?
In some cases, an air or gas bubble is placed in the eye as part of cornea transplant surgery. If you have an air or gas bubble in your eye, flying can be extremely dangerous. Talk to your ophthalmologist about air travel if you’ve had a corneal transplant.

Can you fly if you have been diagnosed with retinal holes or wrinkles?
Flying won’t make retinal holes or wrinkles worse. However, retinal holes sometimes turn into a retinal detachment, which is an eye emergency. If you have retinal holes or wrinkles, talk to your doctor about any long or exotic travel plans so you aren’t caught in an emergency far from medical care.

What if I’ve had surgery for retinal tears? Can I fly then?
In most cases, retinal repair surgery is done with a laser. There is nothing wrong with flying after a laser retina surgery. However, retinal tears can become retinal detachments – and retinal detachment repair often involves injecting gas or liquid into the eye. That would be a serious problem if you flew in an airplane.

Can I fly after other eye surgery?
It’s safe to fly after most surgeries on the outer part of the eye or eyelids, like pterygium surgery (when a benign, fleshy growth is removed from the eye) or eyebrow-lifting surgery. The biggest concerns when flying after any surgery on the exterior of the eye are:

making sure you see your doctor for follow-up appointments as scheduled;
keeping the eye clean; and
keeping the eye and surgical wound from drying out on the flight.
Can I fly after I have my eyes dilated for an eye exam?
Yes, you can fly after you’ve had your eyes dilated. But bring your sunglasses since you’ll be sensitive to light.

Is it safe to fly if I have keratitis?
There is no danger from flying if you have keratitis. But the air inside airplanes can be very dry and make the symptoms of keratitis worse. Be prepared to keep your eyes comfortable with eye drops or other relief methods that work for you.

Can you fly with a posterior vitreous detachment?
Yes, you can fly if you have posterior vitreous detachment (when the gel-like liquid inside the eye shrinks and pulls away from the back of the eye). There is nothing about flying that would make a posterior vitreous detachment worse. However, PVD can lead to retinal detachment. Speak to your doctor about your posterior vitreous detachment and what could happen next. You don’t want to be caught away from medical care if a posterior vitreous detachment becomes a retinal detachment and requires immediate care.

Can I fly if I’m seeing flashes and floaters?
Yes, you can fly with flashes and floaters. Flying won’t make your flashes or floaters worse. But flashes and floaters can be a serious sign of a potentially blinding retinal detachment or other retina problem. See an ophthalmologist right away if you have a sudden increase in flashes or floaters, preferably prior to your flight


January is Glaucoma Awareness Month

Posted on by Angela Walsh in Uncategorized Leave a comment

Glaucoma is a disease of the optic nerve. The optic nerve is the nerve that carries signals from your eye to your brain and is therefore very important for sight. Damage to the nerve will initially decrease a person’s peripheral vision, causing tunnel vision. If the optic nerve sustains continual damage, the vision loss can start to extend into the central part of the vision. If it reaches end stages, glaucoma is one of the few diseases that can cause complete darkening blindness, where someone is unable to even perceive light.
Glaucoma is linked to high eye pressures and so treatment involves lowering the pressure in your eye. There are two main types of glaucoma, divided based on how they cause a person’s eye pressure to become high. One is when the drainage system of a person’s eye gets blocked by your iris, or the colored part of your eye. This is called Acute Angle Closure Glaucoma. Blockage of your drainage system usually causes a rapid (acute) increase in a person’s pressure, with very high eye pressures. This can sometimes cause very concerning symptoms including blurry vision, haloes around lights, eye pain, headache, and even nausea or vomiting. This type of glaucoma can be treated with a laser procedure that is done in the office. The second type of glaucoma is called Primary Open Angle Glaucoma. This is an eye disease of progression. In this type of glaucoma, there is no specific reason for the elevation in your eye pressure, and treatment usually starts with pressure-lowering eye drops. If eye drops are not enough to keep this type of glaucoma from progressing, sometimes laser treatments or surgeries may be considered. Risk factors for this type of glaucoma include age over 60, African American race, and positive family history. While glaucoma can be a serious disease, early diagnosis can prevent many of the serious consequences of glaucoma. If you have any concerns, ask your doctor or make an appointment with an eye doctor for further evaluation.


Eye Anatomy – Part 2: The Lens & Vitreous

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Welcome to Part 2 of our Eye Anatomy blog series! In this post we are going to talk about the Lens and Vitreous.

The Lens:

The lens sits behind the colored part of your eye and helps focus light on the retina in the back of your eye. It can change shape to allow us to see at different distances. This works really well when we are young, but we lose the ability to do this as we age because the lens becomes hardened. When the lens becomes hard enough that it becomes difficult to see through, we call it a cataract.

Some common eye conditions and diseases related to the Lens are:

 

 

The Vitreous:

The vitreous is the jelly in the back of the eye that fills the space between the lens and the retina. As we age this jelly can start to liquefy and collapse in on itself. When the jelly collapses in on itself microscopic fibers within the vitreous tend to clump and cast shadows on the retina, which end up causing floaters in your vision.  Floaters are very common.  Almost everyone experiences them at one time or another. They become more frequent as we age.

 

Vitreous Detachment

Floaters

 

There is no way to eliminate the floater through surgery, laser treatment or medication. With time, the floater will become less noticeable as the brain adjusts to its presence and can “tune out” the floater. The floater will always be somewhat observable and present, particularly if one eye is covered and the patient looks at a light-colored background.

Anyone with the sudden onset of a new floater should be examined promptly by an ophthalmologist. The ophthalmologist will perform a dilated exam and look at the vitreous and retina with specialized equipment. Sudden floaters could be a symptom of vitreous detachment, which is a benign condition that carries the risk of developing into a retinal tear and/or retinal detachment.

Please let us know if you have questions or comments regarding this post.  We care about you and your eyes!  Until next time!

 

 


Eye Anatomy – Part 1: The Cornea & Iris

Posted on by Angela Walsh in blog Comments Off on Eye Anatomy – Part 1: The Cornea & Iris

My name is Dr. Naina Gupta and I am one of the newest members of the SureVision team.  Patient education is a very important aspect of what we do here at SureVision.  We believe that understanding the different parts of your eyes and how they contribute to your vision can empower patients and promote better eye health.  Over the next couple of weeks I”ll be posting a 3 part series of blog posts covering the eye anatomy. In this post we are going to talk about the Cornea and the Iris.

The Cornea:

The cornea is a clear, curved cap on the front part of your eye. It is important in protecting your eye, but also the curve of the cornea acts like a lens, focusing light on the retina in the back of the eye.

Some common eye conditions and diseases related to the Cornea are:

The Iris:

The iris is the circular part of the eye that provides the color to our eyes. It is the part that makes your eye blue, brown, green or hazel. It surrounds the pupil, which is just empty space that allows light to pass. The iris controls the amount of light that enters your eye by changing size. For example, when you are in a bright environment your iris will stretch out, causing the pupil to shrink, or constrict, and limit the light that passes. When the environment is dark, your iris with shrink, causing the pupil to enlarge, or dilate, allowing more light to pass.

 

“There are many conditions that can involve the iris. Inflammation of the iris is called iritis. This is often seen with inflammation of other parts of the eye as well. There are also many conditions that impact the pupil size, some of which can be life threatening. Therefore, unequal pupils should always prompt a thorough exam. Conditions that can cause an asymmetric pupil include a Horner’s syndrome, Adie’s tonic pupil, a palsy of cranial nerve, medications (including anti-nausea patches) and mechanical anisocoria. Again, an asymmetric pupil should be thoroughly checked out by a physician, to rule out any life threatening issues.”

Please let us know if you have questions or comments regarding this post.  We care about you and your eyes!  Until next time!

 

 


2016 Holiday Shows

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Come See Dr. Gans at the Ambassadors of Harmony!

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The Ambassadors of Harmony present its 2016 holiday shows at the Touhill performing Arts Center on the University of Missouri – St. Louis campus.

When:

  • Friday, December 9th, 2016 at 2:00 p.m.
  • Sunday, December 11th at 10:00 p.m.

Where:

Click Here to Purchase Tickets


Weekly Eye Fact

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Weekly Eye Fact – Astigmatism

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Each week we will share some facts on terms you may have heard!

Have you ever been told you have an astigmatism? Ever wonder exactly what that meant?

An astigmatism is where your eye has more of an oval shape instead of being round. The oval shape of astigmatism makes it difficult for your eye to focus both near and far. It can be corrected many ways including, glasses, contact lenses, and laser surgery.


Contact Lens Foundation of St. Louis

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imageHere’s a unique group of eye care specialists made up of Ophthalmologists and Optometrists who are leaders in the St. Louis area. It is one of the few associations that combine these two professions for sharing ideas and developing educational programs. It has been in existance for more than 20 years and membership is limited to invited specialists who add unique abilities and experience to the group.