Astigmatism usually refers to corneal astigmatism. Corneal astigmatism is due to a misshapen cornea. Normally the cornea is shaped like a basketball, but in patients with astigmatism the cornea may be shaped more like a football. There are other rarer causes of astigmatism.
Most corneal astigmatism is corrected with glasses or contact lenses. Irregular corneal astigmatism must be corrected with hard contact lenses. Corneal astigmatism can also be fixed surgically with laser vision correction, toric intraocular lenses, or limbal relaxing incisions.
The physicians at Fredericksburg Eye Associates routinely correct astigmatism with glasses, contact lenses, or surgery.
Blepharitis refers to inflammation of the eyelids and the eyelid components. Frequently, the glands that secrete oil onto the surface of the eye become plugged up. This causes the tear film to break down more quickly which causes dryness of the eyes. Bacterial overgrowth may also contribute to blepharitis. Sufferers of blepharitis frequently notice their eyes are red, irritated, and feel dry.
There are several treatments for blepharitis including warm compresses, lid scrubs, prescription ointments or pills, and artificial tears. Frequently the treatment of blepharitis overlaps with the treatment for dry eye disease.
The physicians at Fredericksburg Eye Associates are well-trained to diagnose and treat blepharitis.
A cataract is a clouding of the natural lens inside the eye. The lens can become cloudy, yellow, brown, white, or black. Cataracts can be inherited from family members but can also develop with aging. They are more common in patients with diabetes or those who have taken oral or topical steroids in the past.
When cataracts first start to form, the vision may be corrected with glasses or contact lenses and may not require surgery. As cataracts progress, cataract surgery is usually necessary to improve vision. Cataract surgery is the most commonly performed surgery in the United States and has made tremendous advancements in recent years.
Cataract surgery is the most commonly performed procedure by our surgeons. The physicians at Fredericksburg Eye Associates are also experienced at combining cataract surgery with other procedures such as the correction of refractive error, presbyopia, or minimally invasive glaucoma surgery.
Diabetes Mellitus can affect the eyes in many ways. One of the worst manifestations of diabetes is diabetic retinopathy, which is the leading cause of blindness in Americans age 18-65. Diabetic retinopathy occurs when there is bleeding or leaking of blood vessels which affect the retina. This can cause visual distortion or severe vision loss. Diabetic retinopathy that is not diagnosed or treated early can sometimes be irreversible.
It is important that diabetic patients control their glucose levels and obtain routine eye examinations. At Fredericksburg Eye Associates, our doctors perform a comprehensive dilated eye examination on all of our diabetic patients every year.
Dry Eye Disease is a common condition that can affect vision and cause eye discomfort or irritation. Sufferers of dry eye disease frequently notice blurry vision, a dry sensation, a foreign body sensation, or chronic watery/tearing eyes. There are a number of therapies available for those who suffer from dry eye disease including artificial tears and ointments, changes in diet, punctal plugs, and prescription eye drops.
Dry eye disease is frequently seen in conjunction with blepharitis. The treatment of dry eye disease may overlap with treatment of blepharitis. The physicians at Fredericksburg Eye Associates are well qualified to diagnose and treat these conditions.
Glaucoma refers to a group of disorders which cause progressive damage to the optic nerve. Usually a high eye pressure causes the damage which can lead to severe painless vision loss in its later stages. The peripheral vision is usually affected first so most patients do not notice a change in their vision prior to diagnosis. Family history is a risk factor for the development of glaucoma.
Glaucoma is frequently divided between open angle glaucoma and narrow or closed angle glaucoma. In open angle glaucoma, eye drops are usually used as a first line therapy with laser or surgery necessary in only a small percentage. In narrow angle glaucoma, a laser to the iris is sometimes performed in the office. These patients may or may not also need eye drops and/or further surgery. In addition to a comprehensive eye examination, there are specialized tests useful in the diagnosis and management of glaucoma. At Fredericksburg Eye Associates, our doctors are well-trained to diagnose and treat glaucoma.
Age-Related Macular Degeneration (ARMD) is the leading cause of vision loss among Americans over the age of 65. The condition can affect one or both eyes. ARMD is thought to be heavily influenced by genes inherited from family members. Smoking, age, and exposure to UV light may also contribute to the disease. The central vision is affected by ARMD causing distortion or dark spots in the vision.
There are two forms of ARMD. The dry form of ARMD is the most common. Patients with dry ARMD should take eye vitamins and perform vision tests at home. Some patients with dry macular degeneration will eventually develop wet ARMD where there is bleeding which affects the retina. Vision may decline rapidly. The treatment for wet macular degeneration is usually intravitreal injection of medications. Dr. Cohn and Dr. Baskin both perform intravitreal injections at Fredericksburg Eye Associates. At Fredericksburg Eye Associates, our doctors are experienced in the detection and treatment of macular degeneration.
(Myopia) means your vision is better at near (up close). Most nearsighted people have to wear glasses or contact lenses in order to see distant objects clearly. An alternative to glasses or contacts is laser vision correction or refractive surgery.
Farsightedness (Hyperopia) means your vision is better far away (at a distance). Many farsighted people have to wear glasses or contacts in order to see well. As they age, farsighted people may need glasses or contacts to see far away and up close.
Presbyopia refers to the loss of near vision that occurs normally in middle-aged people. Many people can wear glasses only for near tasks. However, some people wear bifocal glasses or multifocal contacts to help with near tasks. Monovision is another option to avoid glasses.
The physicians at Fredericksburg Eye Associates have considerable experience fitting patients with glasses, contacts including multifocal contacts, monovision, and surgical correction of myopia, hyperopia, astigmatism, or presbyopia.
Strabismus refers to eye misalignment found in children and adults. The eyes may cross, drift outward, or one may be higher than the other. Strabismus can be present in children or adults. It is important to diagnose it if present in childhood as children may develop amblyopia which can be an irreversible cause of vision loss. Adults with strabismus may complain of double vision, eye strain, or difficulty reading.
Strabismus is diagnosed with a comprehensive eye examination. It may be frequently missed if a comprehensive eye examination is not performed. The treatment of strabismus depends on the type and severity of strabismus. Medical treatments for strabismus include eye muscle exercises or prism glasses. Some strabismus need to be corrected with eye muscle surgery--we refer to pediatric ophthalmologists for strabismus surgery.