Floaters refer to the circles, spots, squiggly lines, and cobwebs that drift through our vision. They may be of embryonic origin or acquired through degenerative processes of the vitreous gel or retina. These deposits result in shadows across the retina, the portion of the eye responsible for seeing clear, sharp images.
It is imperative to distinguish normal and naturally occurring floaters and flashes from those associated with retinal problems. Floaters, with or without flashes of light, can be symptomatic of serious eye damage, such as a torn or detached retina. If you have noticed floaters or flashes in your vision, contact our eye doctors to schedule a dilated eye exam as soon as possible.
Glaucoma is the second leading cause of blindness in the United States and throughout the world. Currently, there are 70 million people worldwide with glaucoma and that number continues to grow as the population ages.
In the United States, there are 4-5 million Americans with glaucoma but only half of them are aware of their condition and seek treatment. As untreated glaucoma leads to permanent damage of the optic nerve with resultant vision loss, it is imperative to be screened for glaucoma as part of the annual eye exam.
Glaucoma refers to a group of eye diseases with the common feature of optic nerve damage. Though it is often associated with increased eye pressure, it is not always the case, leading some patients with normal eye pressures to have glaucoma while others with increased eye pressures never develop glaucoma. As such, glaucoma can be elusive in nature and therefore requires specialty training to diagnose and manage properly.
While there is no established cause of glaucoma, certain individuals are at a higher risk for developing the condition -- including those with a family history of the disease; those with diabetes or a past eye injury; people within certain ethnic groups, including African-Americans, Hispanics, Asians, and Scandinavians; those taking corticosteroids; and anyone over the age of 40.
- Advanced age
- A past eye injury
- A family history of cataracts
- A history of smoking
- A history of taking certain prescription medications (e.g., corticosteroids)
- A history of certain medical conditions (e.g., diabetes)
- Long term exposure to ultraviolet light or exposure to radiation.
- Blurry vision
- Double vision
- A feeling of "film" over the eyes
- Temporary improvement in near vision ("second sight")
- Sensitivity to bright lights and glare which may make driving difficult
- Less vivid perception of color
- Frequent changes in eyeglass prescriptions
- Loss of color vision
- Difficulty seeing objects clearly
- Distorted, blurry vision
- Darkened, or empty spots near the center of the visual field