Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) is the leading cause of blindness among older Americans, but new treatments have dramatically changed the course of this disease over the last 10 years, making AMD more manageable than ever before. During AMD Awareness Month in February, the American Academy of Ophthalmology is reminding people that even though currently there is no cure for age-related macular degeneration, there are a number of things you can do to slow its effects and prevent blindness, early detection being a critical first step. AMD is the leading cause of irreversible vision loss in people over 50 and is rapidly growing, worldwide.
What is AMD? – AMD is a common eye condition and a leading cause of blindness in those 50 and older. Aging can cause the macula to slowly degenerate and reduce central vision. – AMD often advances so slowly that vision loss does not occur for many years and traces of the disease can go unnoticed. In others, the disease may progress faster and lead to vision loss in one or both eyes. Over time, objects in vision may not appear as bright as they once were and a blurred area in vision is common, further leading …
Jessica describes the events of that October 2017 day as somewhat serendipitous, even though what transpired illuminated a hidden threat to her life. Jessica, an actress, had just started rehearsing for a play in Billings, Montana, when she decided that contacts, rather than glasses, would better suit her part. “Really, I just thought it would be a good idea to be able to see while I was on stage,“ she laughs. “That’s all I needed was to get fitted for contacts. I didn’t feel that I needed, nor did I have time for, an eye exam. Besides I absolutely despise being dilated.” However, as fate would have it, she went that day to see Tom Felstet, OD, who feels strongly that a thorough view of the retina should be a part of every eye exam. Accordingly, Felstet had made it a priority to purchase an optomap ultra-widefield (UWF™) imaging device when he opened his new practice four years ago. He had the opportunity to utilize the technology during medical school and during his early years in practice. optomap is the only technology that captures over 80% of the retina in a single image, and it does so in a fraction …
Currently, there are more than 3 million people in the United States and over 60 million worldwide living with glaucoma, otherwise known as “the sneak thief of sight”. It is estimated that half of those with glaucoma, do not know they have it. The disease presents no symptoms and is the leading cause of irreversible blindness, taking as much as 40% of sight without notice. January has been deemed National Glaucoma Awareness Month and is an important time to spread the world about this sight-stealing disease.
What is Glaucoma?
Glaucoma is a group of eye diseases that gradually progress, stealing sight, without symptom. Glaucoma can affect people of all ages but is most prevalent in middle-aged adults and the elderly. While there is no cure, surgery or medication can slow its affects and help to prevent further vision loss. The word ‘glaucoma’ is actually an umbrella term for a group of eye diseases that damage the delicate fibers that run from your eye to your optic nerve, which is the nerve that carries information about the images your eye sees to your brain. This damage is often the result of high fluid pressure inside the eye.
What can you do?
Top Tips for Eye Safety this Holiday and Winter Season
With the holiday season upon us, it’s important to note the extra care we need to take to make sure the toys and gifts our children receive are safe and age-appropriate. For this reason, Prevent Blindness America has declared December “Safe Toys and Gifts Awareness Month”.
In 2017, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission reported an estimated 240,000 toy-related injuries treated in United States hospital emergency departments, with an estimated 80,100 of these injuries on children younger than five. 45% of the total injuries were to the head and face area. These statistics show that consumers should keep eye safety in mind when shopping for kids this holiday season. To help them do that, Prevent Blindness has complied some important tips for ensuring safety while shopping.
Look at every toy before you buy it. Is the toy durable? Can it stand the wear and tear of everyday use without breaking, cracking or coming apart? Does it shoot objects or have sharp edges? Toys that fail these tests should be reconsidered.
Before you purchase a toy:
For as long as Dr. David Way, OD, has been in practice, he has endeavored to employ frontline technology in the care of his patients. He explains that it was because of this he was an early adopter of optomap ultra-widefield (UWF™) retinal imaging technology. Way is a big proponent of thoroughly examining the retina and aims to help patients understand the importance of comprehensive retinal exams. “I help them to understand that the eye is the only part of the body that we can observe nerves and blood vessels without doing a CRT or an MRI; and that when I am examining them, I am checking ocular health, as well as, indicators of issues such diabetes, glaucoma, macular degeneration or hypertension”, explains Way.
Patients often refuse to be dilated because they are in a hurry, or simply want to avoid the discomfort. An optomap image, which can be obtained in a fraction of a second through an undilated pupil, allows them to receive a retinal exam without the perceived inconvenience. Over the years at Way’s practice, Spring Klein Vision Center, the acceptance rate for optomap is over 70% which has proved to be a revenue generator and a boon …