Monday, April 28, 2014

Contact Lenses, Dry Eye Problems & Birth Control Pills

Contact lens wearers who use oral contraceptives or birth control pills run the risk of dry eye problems. What does having dry eyes have to do with wearing contact lenses and birth control pills? As it turns out there is indeed a relationship between dry eye symptoms in woman using oral contraceptives who wear contact lenses. A study published in the journal Cornea examined the relationship among oral contraceptive pill (OCP) use, contact lens wear and dry eye signs and symptoms in healthy young women. There were no differences in dry eyes between the phases of the menstrual cycle and no evidence that tear osmolarity-or saltiness-was affected by OCP or contact lens use in the young women. However, the study found that the combination of OCP use and contact lens wear together may increase the severity of dry eye symptoms.

If you or someone you know has questions about contact lens wear, dry eye problems and oral contraceptive or birth control pill use, please feel free to call Eyecare Medical Group, 53 Sewall Street, Portland, Maine 04102 at 888-374-2020, visit Eyecare Medical Group or facebook.com/eyecaremedicalgroup to schedule an appointment.


Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Risk Factors Increase Fuchs Dystrophy Severity

Certain risk factors may increase the severity of Fuchs Endothelial Corneal Dystrophy (FECD). Fuchs’ Dystrophy is a type of corneal disease that affects the inner most layer of the cornea-the endothelium. Generally, Fuchs’ Dystrophy is slowly progressive, occurs in both eyes and is slightly more common in women than men. While sometimes we see Fuchs Dystrophy in people in their 30’s and 40’s, it usually does not compromise vision until people are in their 50’s or 60’s.

Researchers reporting in the journal Investigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science studied the effects of smoking, and other risk factors, on the development of advanced Fuchs' Endothelial Corneal Dystrophy (FECD) and on central corneal thickness (CCT). As expected, being female increased the odds of developing advanced Fuchs' Endothelial Corneal Dystrophy (FECD) by 34% and smoking increased the odds by 30%. Diabetes was also associated with increased in corneal thickness-reflecting greater risk of corneal swelling.

If you or someone you know has questions about risk factors that may increase the severity of Fuchs Endothelial Corneal Dystrophy (FECD), please feel free to call Eyecare Medical Group, 53 Sewall Street, Portland, Maine 04102 at 888-374-2020, visit Eyecare Medical Group or facebook.com/eyecaremedicalgroup to schedule an appointment.


Monday, April 14, 2014

Retinal Vein Occlusion:What is It?

This is a color composite image of a patient with a branch retinal vein occlusion. A color composite is comprised of multiple images which the computer software "stitches" together to form a wide angle image. A vein occlusion typically occurs where an artery crosses a vein, called an arteriovenous crossing. If a patient has high blood pressure and/or high cholesterol, pressure can be exerted on the vein, which has more malleable walls than an artery. Given enough pressure, the vein can be fully occluded.

An occlusion results in pressure build up the corresponding smaller venules, and they break and leak plasma and blood into the intraretinal tissue, which can result in blurred vision. A branch retinal vein occlusion is named such when a "branch" of the central retinal vein is occluded. The central retinal vein "branches" out when it reaches the optic nerve head, much like a trunk of a tree. If the occlusion happens within the optic nerve, the entire eye is affected, as the central retinal vein is supplied by the entire venous system of the eye. The actual compression is not treated, but the resulting edema, or swelling, from the occlusion can be treated with in office intravitreal injection.

If you or someone you know has questions about retinal vascular disease or an type of retina problem or disease, please feel free to call Eyecare Medical Group, 53 Sewall Street, Portland, Maine 04102 at 888-374-2020, visit Eyecare Medical Group or facebook.com/eyecaremedicalgroup to schedule an appointment.


Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Best Cataract Surgery Results When Both Eyes Done

While having cataract surgery in one is likely to improve vision and visual functioning, the best results are found in patients who undergo second eye cataract surgery. Researchers reporting in the journal Ophthalmology studied the impact that cataracts and cataract surgery have on clinical measurements of vision, reading speed, objective mobility performance and subjective visual functioning. In this study, 29 participants had cataract surgery on both eyes, 90 participants had cataract surgery in one eye and 1620 participants had no cataract surgery. The results showed that patients who had the cataract surgery in both eyes demonstrated better visual performance, better mobility-based task performance and even scored better on the Activities of Daily Vision Scale (ADVS). Thus, even though patients might find a great improvement after having cataract surgery in only one eye, the data indicate that having cataract surgery on both eyes provides the best visual functioning.

If you or someone you know has questions about cataracts, cataract surgery and lens implants, please feel free to call Eyecare Medical Group, 53 Sewall Street, Portland, Maine 04102 at 888-374-2020, visit EyecareMedical Group or facebook.com/eyecaremedicalgroup to schedule an appointment.


Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Genetic Testing for AMD Macular Degeneration

Genetic testing for Age Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) is now available-but should you have it? While the presence of specific genes may indicate a increased risk for Age Related Macular Degeneration, according to researchers commenting in the Ophthalmology routine genetic testing to predict the development of age related macular degeneration (AMD) does not really predict how a person would respond to treatment with Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor (VEGF) Inhibitor injections and thus the genetic testing is not recommended. Further, the downside of routine genetic testing at present is that it can cause unnecessary anxiety, it can leave patients with promises that are not fulfilled and it may impact insurability and employability.

If you or someone you know has questions about age related macular degeneration (AMD) and whether to have genetic testing to assess your risk of AMD, please feel free to call Eyecare Medical Group, 53 Sewall Street, Portland, Maine 04102 at 888-374-2020, visit Eyecare Medical Group or facebook.com/eyecaremedicalgroup to schedule an appointment.