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Eye DiseasesOur top priority is the care of your eyes. We want to keep your eyes healthy through regular eye health evaluations, communication, and education. This page lists a few of the most common eye diseases. Select from the following list of topics or scroll to learn about the causes, symptoms, and treatments for:

Blepharitis

Blepharitis There are two types of blepharitis. Seborrheic blepharitis is often part of an overall skin condition called seborrhea, which may also affect the scalp, chest, back and the area behind the ears. The second form of blepharitis – staph blepharitis – is a more severe condition, caused by bacteria, that begins in childhood and may continue through adulthood.

Causes

Hormones, nutrition, general physical condition, and even stress may contribute to seborrheic blepharitis. Build-ups of naturally occurring bacteria contribute to staph blepharitis.

Symptoms

Blepharitis could be described as dandruff of the eyelids. Seborrheic blepharitis results in redness of the eyelids, flaking and scaling of eyelashes, and greasy, waxy scales caused by abnormal tear production. Staph blepharitis can cause small ulcers, loss of eyelashes, eyelid scarring, and even red eye.

Treatment

Careful cleaning of the eyelids can reduce seborrheic blepharitis. Application of hot packs to the eyes for 20 minutes a day can also help. Staph blepharitis may require antibiotic drops and ointments.

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Cataracts

Cataracts A cataract is a cloudiness that occurs in the lens of the eye. The lens is made mostly of water and protein that is arranged to let light through. Sometimes the protein clumps, blocking light and making the lens appear cloudy.

Symptoms

A person with cataracts may encounter faded colors, problems with light (such as halos, or headlights that seem too bright), poor night vision, double vision, or multiple vision.

Treatment

Your eye doctor can detect the presence of cataracts through a thorough eye exam, including a visual acuity test and dilation of the pupils. Treatment is available to prevent or reduce cataracts.


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Conjunctivitis (pink eye)

Conjunctivitis Conjunctivitis, commonly called pink eye, is a redness of the eye. It is often accompanied by a discharge (clear, yellow, or white) and itching in the eye.

Causes

Pink eye can be viral, bacterial or an allergic reaction. Viral pink eye is highly contagious.

Prevention & Treatment

To avoid spreading conjunctivitis, wash your hands often, do not touch the infected area with your hands, do not share wash cloths or towels, and avoid using makeup which may become contaminated. A child with pink eye should be kept from school for a few days. Sometimes an eye doctor will need to prescribe antibiotic eye drops and ointments to clear up conjunctivitis.


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Diabetic Retinopathy

Diabetic Retinopathy Diabetic retinopathy is a condition associated with diabetes. High levels of blood sugar can  damage tiny blood vessels in your eye. Diabetic patients should have an annual comprehensive  eye exam to monitor for diabetic retinopathy. There are different levels of damage starting from  very mild to severe. In the early stages, the patient often has no symptoms and changes can  only be through an eye exam.

Symptoms

Symptoms of diabetic retinopathy include:

  • Floaters” – small specks that pass across your field of vision, made up of cells floating in the transparent gel of your eyeball
  • Difficulty reading or seeing things close-up
  • Sudden loss of vision
  • Flashes
  • Blurred or darkened vision

Risk Factors & Treatment

If you have diabetes, make sure you control your blood sugar level. This will reduce your risk of getting diabetic retinopathy. If you are experiencing some of the symptoms listed above, give us a call. If diagnosed properly, diabetic retinopathy can be treated with a laser procedure or a vitrectomy.


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Dry Eye Syndrome

Dry Eye SyndromeIf your eyes are constantly itchy or dry, you may have dry eye syndrome, which affects almost 10 million Americans. Dry eye syndrome is caused by a lack of, or poor quality of, tears. Tears lubricate the outer layer of the eye called the cornea. If the tears are not composed of a proper balance of mucous, water, and oil, the eye becomes irritated.

Symptoms

Dry eye syndrome leads to a number of symptoms, including itchiness, irritation, burning, excessive tearing, redness, blurred vision that improves with blinking, and discomfort after long periods of watching television, using a computer, or reading.

Risk Factors

There are many factors that can contribute to dry eye syndrome. These include dry, hot, or windy climates; high altitudes; air-conditioned rooms; and cigarette smoke. Contact lens wearers, people with abnormally dry skin, and the elderly are more likely to develop dry eye syndrome. You may also be more at risk if you take certain medications, have a thyroid condition, a vitamin-A deficiency, Parkinson’s or Sjorgen’s disease, or if you are a woman going through menopause.

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Glaucoma

Glaucoma Glaucoma is a very common eye disorder affecting millions of Americans. It is caused by too much pressure on the inside of the eye. The fluid in your eyes helps to nourish and cleanse the inside of your eyes by constantly flowing in and out. When the fluid is prevented from flowing out, the intraocular pressure builds and damages the optic nerve. This causes a gradual loss in peripheral vision.

Symptoms

Unfortunately early stages of open-angle glaucoma have no symptoms. In late stages, patients  experience a type of tunnel vision, where their field of vision gradually decreases. It can  eventually lead to blindness. Narrow-angle glaucoma, which is rare, carries symptoms of sharp  pain in the eyes, blurred vision, dilated pupils, and even nausea or vomiting. It can cause  blindness in a matter of days, and it requires immediate medical attention.

Risk Factors & Treatment

Heredity is a risk factor. Also, you may be at greater risk if you are over 45, of African descent, near-sighted, or diabetic. Finally, if you have used steroids or cortizone for a long period of time, or if you have suffered an eye injury in the past, you have a greater chance of developing glaucoma.


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Macular Degeneration

Macular Degeneration Macular degeneration is a disease which affects a small area of the retina known as the macula. The macula is a specialized spot on the retina that allows us to see the fine detail of whatever is directly in front of us. Macular degeneration occurs when the macula begins to deteriorate.

"Wet" vs. "Dry"

Most often, macular degeneration is accompanied by formation of yellow deposits, called  “drusen,” under the macula, which dry out or thin the macula. This is called “dry” macular  degeneration. Less common is wet macular degeneration, abnormal blood vessels develop under  the macula and leak fluid. This is called “wet” macular degeneration.

Causes

A number of uncontrollable factors contribute to macular degeneration, including age, sex, eye color, farsightedness, and race. Risk factors you can control include smoking, high blood pressure, exposure to harmful sunlight, and diet.

Symptoms

The most common symptoms, when detected, include a spot of blurry vision, dark vision, or  distorted vision. Wet macular degeneration progresses much faster than the dry variety. Both  forms of macular degeneration can cause blindness.

Treatment

Currently, there is no cure for macular degeneration, but treatment is available to slow the effects.


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Retinal Detachment

Retinal DetachmentThe part of the eye which collects light and transmits the light messages to the optic nerve and brain is the retina. It lines the inner back wall of the eye. When the retina separates from the back wall, it is known as retinal detachment. It is a serious condition which can cause permanent damage and vision loss if not treated quickly.

Symptoms

A retinal detachment often causes sudden defects in your vision. It may just cause a blind spot  too small to notice, or it may cause a noticeable shadow which obscures your vision. An increase  in “floaters,” which look like small particles or fine threads or dots, may also be noticed. Finally,  flashes of light are associated with retinal detachment.

Risk Factors

Eye injuries, tumors, and cataract surgery can cause retinal detachment. Near-sighted individuals and the elderly are at greater risk for spontaneous detachment. Also, diabetic retinopathy, a condition associated with diabetes, can cause bleeding which leads to retinal detachment.


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Dry Eye

If your eyes are constantly itchy or dry, you may have dry eye syndrome, which affects almost 10 million Americans. Dry eye syndrome is caused by a lack of, or poor quality of, tears. Tears lubricate the outer layer of the eye called the cornea. If the tears are not composed of a proper balance of mucous, water, and oil, the eye becomes irritated.

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Specialty Contacts

Contact lenses, when used properly, are very convenient, and with the latest advancements in technology, they are extremely comfortable. Most of the time, you will hardly know you are wearing them, though you will certainly notice how clear and accurate your vision is. Contact lenses are small lenses worn on the surface of the eye, or cornea, to correct vision.

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What's Happening at Parker Vision Specialists

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With the Solar Eclipse coming up on Monday, August 21st, we have gotten many questions regarding eclipse glasses and safety. We do not carry any eclipse glasses in our office. However, we wanted to provide our patients with detailed information on eclipse safety and places to find eclipse glasses. It is very important to protect your eyes during the eclipse, as even the s...

We will be closed on Tuesday to observe the 4th of July

snoopy 4th of july

We will re-open on Wednesday, July 5th. Have a great holiday!

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