Simple Tips for Healthy Eyes

Your eyes are an important part of your health. There are many things you can do to keep protect them and make sure you are seeing your best. The offices of Retina Group of Washington – Maryland – Annapolis is committed to your vision health and by following these tips, you can greatly decrease the risk of developing a host of eye complications:

  1. Have regular eye exams: Visiting your eye care professional for a comprehensive dilated eye exam is the only way to really be sure your eyes are healthy. Many common eye diseases such as glaucoma, diabetic eye disease and age-related macular degeneration often have no warning signs. A dilated eye exam is the only way to detect these diseases in their early stages.
  2. Know your family’s eye health history. Talk to your family members about their eye health history. This will help to determine if you are at higher risk for developing a hereditary eye condition.
  3. Eat right. Research shows that there are real vision health benefits in eating certain foods such eating a diet rich in fruits and vegetables, (particularly carrots and dark leafy greens such as spinach, kale, or collard greens) and fish high in omega-3 fatty acids (such as salmon, tuna, and halibut).
  4. Maintain a healthy weight. Being overweight or obese increases your risk of developing diabetes and other systemic conditions, which can lead to vision loss, such as diabetic eye disease or glaucoma.
  5. Quit smoking or never start. Research has linked smoking to an increased risk of developing age-related macular degeneration, cataract, and optic nerve damage, all of which can lead to blindness.
  6. Wear your shades. Sunglasses help protect your eyes from the sun’s ultraviolet rays. When purchasing sunglasses, look for ones that block out 99 to 100 percent of both UV-A and UV-B radiation.
  7. Give your eyes a rest. If you spend a lot of time at the computer or focusing on any one thing, you sometimes forget to blink and your eyes can get fatigued. Try the 20-20-20 rule: Every 20 minutes, look away about 20 feet in front of you for 20 seconds. This can help reduce eyestrain.

Your healthy vision is our top priority

At the office of Retina Group of Washington – Maryland – Annapolis, we’re dedicated to providing the highest quality of skilled and compassionate retinal eye care. For more information on our office and the many services we provide, give us a call today.

The Importance of Adult Retinal Care

Preserving eyesight can present many challenges as one goes through life. Thankfully, young children probably have few such problems, but adults must be vigilant for any signs of problems with the eyes, and these problems might be simple or challenging.

The retina is one of the most important structures of the eye, the thin tissue that lines the inside back wall of the eye, collecting all the light that enters it and turns it into electrical signals that are returned to the brain, creating visual images. The vitreous is a clear gel that fills the back cavity of the eye and is attached to the retina. At the offices of Retina Group of Washington – Maryland – Annapolis, our skilled professionals are highly trained in treating a full scope of retinal conditions, offering customized care for each patient.

There are a host of problems that can affect the retina and threaten healthy vision in adults. Some of the most common include:
• Retinal tear: When the clear, gel-like substance in the center of your eye (vitreous) shrinks and tugs on the thin layer of tissue lining the back of your eye (retina) with enough traction to cause a break in the tissue.
• Retinal detachment: This usually occurs when fluid passes through a retinal tear, causing the retina to lift away from the underlying tissue layers.
• Diabetic retinopathy: If you have diabetes, the tiny blood vessels (capillaries) in the back of your eye can deteriorate and leak fluid into and under the retina. This causes the retina to swell, which may blur or distort your vision.
• Age-related macular degeneration (AMD): When the macula is damaged and begins to break down. The macula is located in the center of the retina, is damaged and begins to break down, causing problems with central vision.

Committed to maintaining good eye health

The retinal specialists at Retina Group of Washington – Maryland – Annapolis ensure the health of the retina for people of all ages and provide excellent care for the disorders that can affect it. We offer a complete retinal evaluation using the latest imaging equipment and are able to treat many conditions in the office. When surgery is needed, we use the most advanced retinal surgical technology.

7 Common Conditions Treated by Retina Specialists

You count on your eye doctor to keep you seeing clearly. In fact, eye doctors (ophthalmologists) perform a host of important functions — from eye exams, to prescribing medications, and doing eye surgery. But there are times when an eye problem requires even further specialized care. For these situations, a retina specialist is needed.

Retina specialists are experts in conditions of the retina (the layer of light-sensitive cells at the back of the eyeball that trigger nerve impulses that pass from the optic nerve to the brain) and the vitreous (the gel-like substance that helps the eye maintain its round shape). At the office of Retina Group of Washington – Maryland – Annapolis, our skilled team of professionals will diagnose and treat a wide range of retinal and vitreous diseases using state-of-the-art equipment.

Conditions treated by retina specialists

  1. Retinal detachment: Tears occur when the vitreous pulls away from the retina. Liquid that passes through the tear and settles under the retina can separate the retina from the back wall of the eye, resulting in a retinal detachment.
  2. Diabetic retinopathy: A potentially blinding complication of diabetes that damages the retina. It occurs when tiny retinal blood vessels become damaged from diabetes and begin to leak fluid or blood, resulting in blurred vision.
  3. Age-related macular degeneration (AMD): One of the most common eye diseases treated by retina specialists. The condition is associated with aging, and it is the leading cause of blindness among people over the age of 50 in America. AMD gradually destroys sharp, central vision.
  4. Macular hole/pucker: Scar-like tissue can damage the tiny portion of the retina responsible for seeing fine details clearly.
  5. Retinal vein occlusion: A blockage of the small veins that carry blood away from the retina.
  6. Cancers of the eye: Although uncommon, cancers can affect the outer parts of the eye, such as the eyelid or the inside the eyeball.
  7. Severe eye trauma: Accidents that involve a puncture wound or foreign body being lodged in the eye run the risk of damaging the eye and/or vision.

Committed to maintaining good eye health

At the office of Retina Group of Washington – Maryland – Annapolis, we’re dedicated to providing the highest quality of skilled and compassionate eye care. For more information on our office and the many services that we provide, give us a call today.

Shedding Light on the Power of CentraSight®

If you have been suffering from the effects of age-related macular degeneration (AMD), you know how troubling the condition can be. In addition to compromising your central vision, the condition is incurable and destined to get worse over time. At the office of Retina Group of Washington – Maryland – Annapolis our team of skilled professionals is trained in the diagnosis and treatment of end-stage AMD and, using advanced technologies, we can help improve your eye vision and quality of life.

One of those technologies is CentraSight®, an FDA-approved medical telescope, about the size of a pea, which is implanted inside the eye to reduce the effects of the central vision blind spot caused by the disease. The telescope implant projects the objects that you’re trying to see onto the healthy area of the light-sensing retina that has not degenerated.

Are you a candidate?

In most cases, to be considered a potential candidate for the CentraSight telescope implant, you must:
• have irreversible, end-stage AMD
• are no longer a candidate for drug treatment of your AMD
• have not had cataract surgery in the eye in which the telescope will be implanted
• meet certain vision and cornea health requirements
• are at least 65 years of age

After a thorough examination and testing, we will discuss with you if you’re likely to benefit from the CentraSight treatment program. If so, our tests will indicate which eye should be treated and what your vision may be like after the telescope is inserted. Once the CentraSight device is implanted, we will usually recommend a visual training/rehabilitation program to help you acclimate yourself to the devise and your new vision abilities.

At the office of Retina Group of Washington – Maryland – Annapolis, we’re dedicated to providing the highest quality of skilled and compassionate eye care. If you are experiencing symptoms of end-stage AMD, contact us immediately. For more information on our office and the many services that we provide, give us a call today.

Eye Trauma Can Pose a Risk to Your Vision

Accidents are a part of life and when they happen, they can cause all manner of bodily harm. When the eye is suddenly hit, the trauma from the impact and damage that ensues can pose a risk to your vision. At the offices of Retina Group of Washington – Maryland – Annapolis, our highly skilled and compassionate staff will work to ease your pain, evaluate the condition of your eye, and effectively treat the damage caused to it.

Trauma can take many forms, varying in severity from minor injury to medical emergencies. It’s important to note that even in cases where trauma seems minor, every eye injury should be given medical attention, especially if you develop any of the following symptoms:
• eye pain
• blurred vision
• cuts to the eyelid
• diminished eye movement
• eye protrusion
• blood in the clear part of the eye
• abnormal pupil size or shape
• a foreign object embedded in the eye

The best way to avoid eye trauma is to take simple precautions. We suggest using protective eyewear while doing things that may put them at risk – such as home repair, yard work, cleaning, cooking, and playing sports. In most cases of injury, people report not properly protecting their eyes – which is an indication of just how important taking the necessary precautions can be.

A trusted partner in care

At the office of Retina Group of Washington – Maryland – Annapolis, we’re dedicated to providing the highest quality of skilled and compassionate eye care for a full spectrum of eye conditions. For more information on our office and the many services we provide, give us a call today.

Retinal Detachment is a Medical Emergency

Do you see the light? You can thank your eyes’ retina for it. The retina is responsible for converting light from the outside world allowing us to see the world around us. Should the retina be lifted or pulled from its normal position, a retinal detachment will occur that can cause permanent vision loss if left untreated. At the office of Retina Group of Washington – Maryland – Annapolis our team of skilled professionals is trained in the diagnosis and treatment of retinal detachment.

In some cases there may only be small areas of the retina that are torn – a precursor of possible retinal detachment. Symptoms include a sudden or gradual increase in either the number of floaters (little “cobwebs” or specks that float about in your field of vision), light flashes in the eye, and a darkening of peripheral vision.

Are you at risk?

Although retinal detachment can occur at any age, it is more common in people over age 40, affecting more men than women. The condition is more likely to occur in people who:
• are extremely nearsighted
• have had a retinal detachment in the other eye
• have a family history of retinal detachment
• have had cataract surgery
• have other eye diseases or disorders
• have had eye injury

The good news is that various techniques are available to treat retinal tears and detachments ranging from laser therapy, freezing, or surgery. Depending on your particular case, we will recommend the best treatment option for you.

Optimal vision is our top priority

If you are experiencing symptoms, contact us immediately. Regular eye exams can also flag early changes in your eyes that can prevent future problems. At the office of Retina Group of Washington – Maryland – Annapolis, we’re dedicated to providing the highest quality of skilled and compassionate eye care. For more information on our office and the many services that we provide, give us a call today.

Laser Therapy Effectively Treats Some Eye Conditions

It literally allows you to see the light! The portion of the eye known as the retina plays a critical role in your ability to see, as it converts light into nerve signals that are then sent to the brain, giving you vision. Like all parts of the body, the retina is subject to disease. At the offices of Retina Group of Washington – Maryland – Annapolis, our team of highly-skilled eye specialists is well equipped to diagnose and treat conditions of the retina, helping to restore healthy vision for our patients.

Retinal diseases vary widely, but most of them cause symptoms and can affect any part of the eye. They share some common signs and symptoms, such as seeing “floaters,” “cobwebs” or flashes of light in your field of vision, or having blurry, distorted or even or reduced vision. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, it’s important to see prompt medical attention.

A non-invasive procedure known as laser photocoagulation is usually the first line of treatment for common retinal conditions, such as retinal tears, retinal detachments, and age-related macular degeneration (where the center of the retina begins to deteriorate). During this relatively painless procedure, we focus a laser over the affected area that emits a beam of light that travels through the eye. The heat works to seal the tear or destroy any abnormal blood cells.

Good eye health is our vision for you

The main goals of retinal treatment are to stop or slow disease progression and preserve, improve or restore your vision. At the office of Retina Group of Washington – Maryland – Annapolis, we’re dedicated to providing the highest quality of skilled and compassionate eye care. For more information on our office and the many services we provide, give us a call today.

The Winter Sun can Pose a Hazard to Your Eyes

Summer’s over, but that doesn’t mean the sunglasses should come off! For many people, eye protection is top of mind during the hot summer months, but not so much during the cold winter ones, where the sun’s UV radiation can be just as dangerous. Too much UV exposure — regardless of season — may increase the risk of developing a wide variety of eye conditions including cataracts, eye lesions and even cancer.

At the office of Retina Group of Washington – Maryland – Annapolis, we treat all our patients and their eye conditions with the utmost skill and care. We are also committed to patient education, and we offer these tips for protecting your eyes throughout the year:
 Wear goggles during winter sports: Whether you’re an avid skier or snowboarder, one of the dangers of being outside when there is snow on the ground is the amount of UV rays you’re exposed to. It can be as much as double as is present during the summer months. The bright sun reflects off the white surface of the snow, which magnifies the rays and makes them even stronger.
 Wear sunglasses when there’s snow on the ground: Snow blindness occurs when your eyes are overloaded with UV rays, causing temporary loss of vision. Wear sunglasses to protect yourself from snow blindness – if you’re doing such things as walking in the snow, sledding, or just shoveling the driveway.
 Wear sunglasses on sunny and cloudy days: Even on cloudy days, the UV index can be dangerously high. All protective eyewear should have a side shield protection or wrap around the eye so light cannot enter the eye from side reflections
 Get regular eye exams. Eye deterioration from UV damage can easily be spotted during a routine exam. If caught in time, future eye damage can probably be prevented.

Committed to your vision health

At the office of Retina Group of Washington – Maryland – Annapolis, we’re dedicated to providing the highest quality of skilled and compassionate eye care. For more information on our office and the many services we provide, give us a call today.

What is Central Serous Chorioretinopathy?

There are many things that can go wrong with the eye – affecting your ability to see clearly. One of those conditions is called central serous chorioretinopathy (CSC), which results in the sudden onset of blurred or distorted vision — usually in only one eye — that is accompanied by a blind spot in the center of the visual field.

At the offices of Retina Group of Washington – Maryland – Annapolis, our team of highly-skilled eye professionals is well equipped to diagnose and treat CSC, helping to manage the condition and to recover healthy vision for our patients.

Central serous retinopathy happens when fluid builds up behind the retina in the eye, causing sudden or gradual vision loss. While blurry central vision in one eye is the most common symptom, others include reduced night vision, reduced ability to distinguish between colors and an impaired ability to discern fine detail – like reading and recognizing faces.

CSC usually resolves on its own within a few weeks to months. For chronic sufferers, the condition can lead to long-term vision difficulties, requiring medical treatments. Early detection of CSC is very helpful, and most eyes with CSC can be treated successfully with laser therapy, oral medications and/or ocular injections to avoid permanent vision loss.

Your healthy vision is our top priority

You should always report any changes in your vision to your eye doctor especially if you experience any loss of vision or sudden changes. At the office of Retina Group of Washington – Maryland – Annapolis, we’re dedicated to providing the highest quality of skilled retinal eye care. For more information on our office and the many services we provide, give us a call today.

Children’s Eye Diseases

The importance of retina specialists in treating children’s eye diseases

Children experience a variety of eye problems that often require unique treatment, as a child’s eye and general vision are still developing up until age nine. At the offices of Retina Group of Washington, our skilled professionals are trained in diagnosing and treating  ocular disorders in children of all ages, from newborn babies to teenagers.

One of the most serious of conditions is retinal disorder, which occurs when the retina malfunctions. The retina is the light-sensitive tissue on the inside and back of the eye. Vision originates in the retina, which contains photoreceptor cells that convert light into electrical impulses. These impulses are the visual information or “pictures” that travel to the brain via the optic nerve. Most retinal disorders involve a disruption in the transmission of these impulses.

Signs your child may have a retinal disorder:

  • a white pupil
  • a loss or partial loss of vision
  • night blindness
  • black “floaters” in vision
  • sudden, persistent flashing lights
  • an intolerance of light

Accurate diagnosis is made through a full ophthalmologic examination that may involve an ultrasound of the eye, visual field tests, CT cans and other imaging techniques.  Treatment of retinal disorders varies widely, depending on the type. Some of the most common include: retinopathy of prematurity (ROP) a disorder that occurs in premature infants resulting in blood vessels that grow out of control along the retina; uveitis, a form of eye inflammation; congenital malformations of the optic nerve and retina; juvenile retinal detachment; and juvenile retinoschisis, a degenerative retinal disorder.

Committed to maintaining good eye health

At the office of Retina Group of Washington, we’re dedicated to providing the highest quality of skilled and compassionate eye care for your child. For more information on our office and the many services that we provide, give us a call today.