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Diabetic Retinal Exam


Diabetes is a disease that affects the body in several different ways. One particular complication can be a loss of vision. People with diabetes can get blurry vision when their blood sugar is too high. They’re also at greater risk for serious eye problems including cataracts, glaucoma and retinopathy.

Diabetes and Eye Care
Yearly dilated eye exams for people that have diabetes is an important part of making sure that the disease is being controlled. The retina is the only place in the human body where we can see both nerves and blood vasculature.
What to Expect at a Diabetic Retinal Exam
Eye exams for people with diabetes can include:

Visual acuity testing measures the eye’s ability to focus and to see details at near and far distances. It can help detect vision loss and other problems.
Ophthalmoscopy and slit lamp exam. These tests allow the doctor to see the back of the eye and other structures within the eye. They may be used to detect clouding of the lens (cataract), changes in the retina and other problems.
Gonioscopy is used to find out whether the area where fluid drains out of your eye (called the drainage angle) is open or closed. This test is done if Dr. Lemley thinks you may have glaucoma.
This test measures the pressure inside the eye which is called intraocular pressure (IOP). It is used to help detect glaucoma.
Optical coherence tomography (OCT) is a test that may be done to check for fluid in your retina. This test is often done with other tests.
Fluorescein angiogram is sometimes done to check for and locate leaking blood vessels in the retina, especially if you have symptoms such as blurred or distorted vision that […]

Torn Retina

What is a torn retina?
The retina is the light-sensitive tissue at the back of the eye that sends images to the brain.  Normally, the retina lies against the back of the eye where blood vessels supply it with oxygen and nutrients.  Tears in the retina may impair vision and lead to a detached retina.  A detached retina occurs when the retina pulls away from the inside back wall of the eye.  When this happens, vision becomes blurred, shaded or distorted.  Left untreated, retinal detachment almost always causes permanent sight loss in the affected eye.
How does a retina become torn?
Retinal tears and detachment may be caused by eye injury, the aging process, tumors, cataract surgery, eye disease or extreme nearsightedness.  A torn retina occurs when the vitreous, a clear gel that fills the middle of the eye, pulls away from the retina at the back of the eye.  Normally there are no problems when the vitreous separates from the retina.  However, sometimes it pulls hard enough that the fluid flows behind these tears and lifts the retina from the back of the eye.  This can lead to retinal detachment.  When the retina comes loose, it no longer receives oxygen and nutrients from the blood vessels at the back of the eyeball which then results in permanent vision loss.
What are the symptoms of a torn retina?
Light flashes and lightning streaks could mean retinal cells are not in their normal position to receive clear, focused, visual images. Floaters may mean specks of retinal tissue are floating in the vitreous gel.

Flashing lights, lightning streaks and floaters are all symptoms of a torn retina. However, you may experience these conditions and not have a torn retina. Flashes and streaks […]

Retinal Anatomy

The retina is the light-sensitive tissue that lines the inside of the eye. The retina functions in a manner similar to film in a camera. The optical elements within the eye focus an image onto the retina of the eye, initiating a series of chemical and electrical events within the retina. Nerve fibers within the retina send electrical signals to the brain, which then interprets these signals as visual images.

The retina has two main parts: the peripheral retina and the central retina. The central retina includes the macula and fovea and is very small. The large area of the retina that surrounds the macula and makes up 95% of the retina is called the peripheral retina.

The peripheral retina gives us vision to the side, called peripheral vision. It is this part of the retina that is at work when we see something out of the corner of the eye. Because the peripheral retina is not able to see detail clearly, we cannot use our peripheral vision to read, drive or even recognize a face. If you see someone off to your side, out of the corner of your eye, you may be able to tell who it is because you recognize the person’s general shape, but you won’t be able to see the expression on the person’s face.

In order to see fine detail, you must look straight ahead using the macula, the center of the retina.

If you look at drawings and photographs of the retina you will note that there are dark, curving, and branching lines in the retina. These are the blood vessels of the retina. The blood vessels bring oxygen and nutrition to the retina. In order for the peripheral retina and […]

List of Retinal Diseases

There are many types of retinal diseases: some are fairly common and easily treatable and others are quite rare and require complex treatment. Identifying and treating retinal disease in Medford is critical to your overall sight and your quality of life. The earlier you receive a diagnosis, the sooner you can begin treatment, bettering your overall prognosis.

Below is a list of some retinal diseases:

Macular Degeneration
Macular Hole
Macular Pucker
Degenerative Myopia
Diabetic Retinopathy
Lattice Degeneration
Retinal Tear
Retinal Detachment
Retinal Artery Occlusion
Branch Retinal Vein Occlusion
Central Retinal Vein Occlusion
Intraocular Tumors
Inherited Retinal Disorders
Penetrating Ocular Trauma
Pediatric and Neonatal Retinal Disorders
Cytomegalovirus (CMV) Retinal Infection
Macular Edema
Infectious Retinitis
Central Serous Retinopathy
Hypertensive Retinopathy
Retinal Hemorrhage
Solar Retinopathy
Retinitis Pigmentosa

Several types of retinal diseases and disorders can cause blindness because retina damage is often irreversible.
Symptoms of Retinal Disorders
The symptoms of retinal disorders will vary depending on the type of retinal disease you have but generally you may experience vision problem symptoms of:

Sudden vision loss
Loss of peripheral vision
Light flashes
Color perception changes
Eye pain
Night blindness
Vision loss in a particular vision field
Trouble adjusting to light changes

If you experience any of these symptoms, particularly after eye surgery or eye injury, call your ophthalmologist right away to schedule an appointment. The Medford retina doctors at Medical Eye Center can diagnose the root cause of your vision problems and recommend treatment to help save your vision.

What Causes Macular Degeneration?

Macular degeneration is an eye condition that commonly affects senior citizens, though it can appear in anyone.  Macular degeneration results in progressive damage to the central macula–the part of the retina responsible for seeing color and acute vision.

Macular degeneration is the leading cause of vision loss in older adults.  Macular degeneration occurs in “dry” and “wet” forms.  Some of the risk factors for macular degeneration include:

Age. About 30 to 50 million adults globally have macular degeneration and about ten percent of adults ages 66-74 will have macular degeneration.

Family History. If macular degeneration runs in your family, your risk of suffering from it is also higher.

Macular degeneration gene. Your eye care specialist can discuss the possibility of a macular degeneration gene. Certain genes are strongly associated with a person’s risk for getting macular degeneration.

The nutrients lutein and zeaxanthin both help prevent macular degeneration, according to the American Optometric Association.  They help your eyes filter harmful blue wavelengths of light, which protects your vision and maintains healthy cells.  For more information on detecting or treating macular degeneration, please contact Medical Eye Associates in Medford at 800-824-2688 or medfordretinacare.com.

Retinal Eye Diseases

Good eye health is part of every healthy lifestyle and a healthy retina is important to maintain good vision.  The retina is a thin lining located at the back of the eye.  Nerve tissue that is light-sensitive controls how the world is viewed and incoming images are focused at the retina and converted to electrical impulses.  These impulses are transported to the brain by the optic nerve.

Retinal eye diseases can have devastating effects on the eye’s ability to view images and convert electrical impulses.  Three common retinal eye diseases which are treated at Medical Eye Center in Medford include:

Age-related macular degeneration (AMD). This is a leading cause of vision loss in adults over 65 and affects an estimated 15 million people in the United States.  It often goes unnoticed unless caught during a regular eye exam or the patient begins to notice symptoms of vision loss.  There is both dry and wet AMD and dry AMD is often a precursor to wet AMD.
Retinal detachment and retinal tears. There are a number of causes, including excessive blood vessel leakage, scarring, trauma and disease.
Diabetic retinopathy. One of the most frequent causes of eye impairment and vision loss in the United States, impacting people of all age ranges.

For more information on retinal eye disease, please call our office for a consultation.

What to Expect With a Retinal Exam?

A retinal exam is not much different than any other eye exam. A retinal eye exam usually involves these steps:

First, you’ll be asked about your medical history and any vision problems or symptoms you might be experiencing and what brought you here.
Next, how clearly you can see (visual acuity) is measured. Your eye pressure is measured, during which you may receive drops that enlarge your pupils.
Your doctor checks the health of your eyes and retinas, using several lights and performing different types of tests.

Retinal examination

A retinal examination — sometimes called ophthalmoscopy or funduscopy — allows your doctor to evaluate the back of your eye, including your retina, optic disk and the underlying layer of blood vessels that nourish the retina (choroid). Usually before your doctor can see these structures, your pupils must be dilated with eye drops that keep the pupil from getting smaller when your doctor shines light into the eye.

After administering eye drops and giving them time to work, which on rare occasion may burn a bit, your eye doctor may use one or more of these techniques to view the back of your eye:

Direct examination. Your eye doctor uses an ophthalmoscope to shine a beam of light through your pupil to see the back of your eye.
Indirect examination (indirect ophthalmoscopy). Your eye doctor examines the inside of the eye with the aid of a condensing lens and a bright light mounted on his or her forehead. This exam lets your eye doctor see the retina and other structures inside your eye in great detail and in three dimensions.
Slit-lamp exam. In this exam your doctor shines the beam of a slit lamp through a special lens into your eyes. The slit lamp […]

Do You Have Diabetes?

Does your vision seem blurry?
Do you have floating spots in your vision?
Does reading seem more difficult?

Diabetics are at risk for developing vision problems. Initially the symptoms may be very subtle, but can progress to severe vision loss over time. There are treatments that can help you retain your vision. Come to a free discussion with retina specialist Dr. Craig Lemley to learn about diabetic eye disease and the latest treatments.

Diabetic Retinopathy
Eye Care Educational Forum with Craig Lemley, MD
Tuesday, April 22 at 6:00pm
1333 Barnett Road in Medford
541-779-4711 Refreshments Served

LEARN MORE: www.MedfordRetinaCare.com

Medical Eye Center For over 100 years, we have been dedicated to improving vision in our community, our region and our world.