A healthy retina is crucial to enjoying clear vision. As images are captured by the eye, the retina transfers them via the optic nerve to the brain. Examining the retina is part of a thorough Torrance eye exam. The eye care professionals at Atlantis Eyecare take special care to evaluate the retina to determine if there are any conditions present that could result in reduced vision or even blindness.
A detailed retinal exam conducted by one of our highly trained Torrance retina specialists will dilate the pupil so it can be examined using advanced imaging techniques. If a retina condition is detected, the doctors at Atlantis Eyecare have the experience to offer one of the most advanced retina treatment Torrance has to offer. While some conditions are more serious than others, early detection is the key to preventing further deterioration or even blindness.
As the name suggests, diabetic retinopathy is caused from diabetic complications. It is caused when high amounts of blood sugar damage blood vessels within the retina. The retina contains light sensitive cells needed for good vision. This is a serious condition that must be treated to avoid retinal detachment leading to blindness. It can develop in patients with either Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes, particularly in long term cases.
Patients with the following symptoms should come in to Atlantis Eyecare immediately for an examination of their retina:
- Blurred vision
- Blind spots
- Color blindness
- Developing a shadow in your field of view
- Floaters (tiny specks) and/or light flashes that come on suddenly
While these symptoms do not automatically indicate a problem with the retina, an examination will be necessary to correctly diagnose any problem.
Treatment & Drugs
There are degrees of our Torrance retina treatment available for diabetic retinopathy. The severity and nature of the condition, as well as prior response to earlier treatment will guide your eye care doctor in mapping out your treatment options.
These options can include:
removes blood from within the eye to ease symptoms which have become bothersome.
Focused laser treatment
indicated to slow or stop the leak of blood and fluid from the retina.
Scatter laser treatment
used to shrink abnormal blood vessels.
Age Related Macular Degeneration (AMD)
The macula is an oval area in the center of the retina. This region of the retina is responsible for clarity of vision. This condition is usually age related, normally occurring in those over 50 years of age. For older adults, this is the primary cause of loss of vision.
Unfortunately, early stages of AMD produce no symptoms. Regular eye exams are the first line of defense in the treatment of AMD. The examination for AMD includes several specific tests which can include:
- Visual acuity test – done to detect many vision problems as well as AMD
- Dilated eye exam – allows inspection of the interior and back of the eye
- Amsler grid – detects early or worsening AMD by how the eyes perceives grid lines (are they straight, wavy, blurred?)
- Fluorescein angiogram –a special dye is used to highlight blood vessels in the back of the eye
A more serious form of AMD is wet AMD caused by abnormal blood vessels that grow underneath the macula. These vessels leak blood and other fluids which causes swelling in the macula which in turn damages the eye. With wet AMD, central vision loss can happen quickly. If caught early, the doctors at Atlantis Eyecare can halt or slow the progression of the disease.
The most common type of AMD is dry AMD. It is determined that 90% of AMD patients have this type. It is caused when light sensitive cells in the macula break down resulting in blurred central vision.
Symptoms of Wet AMD
As in dry AMD, one of the symptoms is that straight lines appear wavy. This might be noticeable when looking at lines of tile on a floor for example. Another symptom is loss of vision in the central part of an image.
A quick test that can be done at home is to cover one eye and look at your reflection. Repeat this procedure. If any part of the face is blurred, particularly in the central area, you should have an eye exam. If you or a loved one suspects that AMD might be an issue, schedule an eye exam as soon as possible.
Treatment for Wet AMD
After AMD has been detected, decisive treatment can slow or stop the progress, preserving vision. The following treatments are not a cure for wet AMD but are used to manage symptoms.
- Photodynamic therapy – destroys abnormal blood vessels which contribute to wet AMD. Done early enough, this treatment can restore partial or full vision.
- Injected medication into the eye – can slow the progression of wet AMD.
- Laser surgery – a less common but potentially useful treatment option in certain cases used to destroy abnormal blood vessels. This option carries some risk of destroying healthy eye tissue.
Early detection and treatment is the key to maintaining vision. Book an appointment with one of our specialists if you are in any way concerned about your eye health.