You may already know that diabetes increases your risk of developing vision problems. Diabetes can affect your eye care, making it especially important to get a regular eye exam. Diabetic retinopathy is an eye disease caused by diabetes.  The loss of vision can be caused by damaged or abnormal blood vessels. As a result, these blood vessels can swell and leak. It is also possible for them to close, preventing blood from passing through. Sometimes abnormal new blood vessels grow on the retina. All of these changes can affect your vision.

How can you tell if diabetes is affecting your eyes?

If you suffer from diabetes, it’s very important to be aware of any early signs of trouble in your eyes. If you have diabetes and notice any of the following symptoms, you should consult your ophthalmologist:

Treatments for advanced diabetic retinopathy

Diabetic retinopathy might not exhibit any symptoms in the early stages, which makes early detection essential. The main treatments for the advanced stages of diabetic retinopathy are:

Laser Treatment for Diabetic Retinopathy

Scattered laser surgery is a type of laser treatment that is used as part of the treatment for advanced diabetic retinopathy.

During the treatment, your eye will be numbed with anesthetic eye drops. A special lens will focus the beam of light onto your eye. You may feel some slight discomfort and you will notice flashes of bright light. The laser treats the middle and peripheral parts of the retina to prevent loss of central vision. Your vision may be blurry following the treatment, which can take between 30-45 minutes. The doctor can only work on one eye at a time, and two or more treatments may be required in each eye.

Post- Surgery Expectations

You should be able to go home on the same day or the day after your surgery. A patch may be necessary for the first few days. Activities like reading and watching television can quickly tire your eyes.

You will probably have blurred vision after the operation. This should improve gradually, although it may take several months for your vision to fully return to normal. Your surgeon will advise you about any activities you should avoid during your recovery.

While treatment can slow or stop the progression of diabetic retinopathy, it’s not a cure. Because diabetes is a lifelong condition, future retinal damage and vision loss are still possible.

Because diabetes eye diseases can lead to blindness and vision impairment, it is important to see your ophthalmologist regularly to monitor the progression. If you have any questions regarding symptoms, contact our office or call 516-785-3900 (Wantagh office) or 516-541-4141 (Massapequa office) to schedule an appointment.

Sources:

Diabetic Retinopathy: Causes, Symptoms, Treatment

Treatment-Diabetic Retinopathy

Diabetic Retinopathy

Our eye is a like a camera – and the windshield to our eye is called the CORNEA.  The cornea has several layers, like an onion.  Disease, infection, or injury may damage your cornea as we age. If that happens, scars or discoloration can form. This damage can block or distort light as it enters your eye.  Cornea disorders can include the following: 

What Is Corneal Cross-Linking?

Cross-linking is surgery to treat a weakened or warped cornea caused by either keratoconus or post laser vision correction ectasia. The cornea made of sheets of collagen.  In keratoconus or other forms of ectasia, the bonds between the collagen sheets are too weak.  As a result the cornea starts to bulge, causing poor vision that cannot be corrected by glasses or regular soft contact lenses.  In some patients with advanced disease, their corneas may rupture, causing a scar, and resulting in the need for a corneal transplant.  

Corneal Cross-linking is a minimally invasive outpatient procedure for the treatment of progressive keratoconus.  The goal of the procedure is to stiffen the cornea to slow or prevent further progression of the condition and preserve your vision.  The cornea is strengthened and reinforced by “cross-linking” new collagen fibers.

What to expect during a Cross-Linking procedure? 

Here’s what to expect during procedure which is done in the office:

Corneal Cross-Linking Recovery

During the first week while your eye is healing, it is important not to rub your eyes. You may have discomfort for a few days. Your ophthalmologist will give you medication for discomfort if needed.  As part of the healing process, your doctor will put a contact lens in your eye. In the event that it falls out, notify your doctor. You should not try to put it back in. If your eyes are sensitive to light, you may want to wear sunglasses. Some people will experience inner eye discomfort in the beginning of wearing contacts as well. Overall recovery time will vary by individual, and your doctor will let you know when to resume normal activities. Most people can get back to their normal daily activities within 1-2 weeks of cross-linking.

Think you may be a candidate for surgery? Contact our office and request an appointment at one of our locations. Call 516-785-3900 (Wantagh office) or 516-541-4141 (Massapequa office).Our ophthalmologists will talk with you about the risks and benefits of corneal cross-linking surgery.  Insurances often cover the procedure.  Financing is available for those patients who require it.

Sources:

Corneal Cross Linking 

Cornea

Corneal Cross Linking (CXL)

Eye health is important in every phase of life. Many eye conditions in their early stages, have no obvious signs or symptoms and annual exam is often the only way to detect eye conditions before they progress. In most cases, glaucoma goes undetected until it is advanced which can lead to significant damage. 

What is Glaucoma?

Glaucoma is a disease that damages your eye’s optic nerve.  Usually, it occurs when fluid builds up in the front part of the eye. That extra fluid increases the pressure in your eye, ultimately damaging the optic nerve. 

Glaucoma patients often experience gradual and subtle vision loss, which is virtually undetectable until it reaches advanced stages. The only sure way to diagnose glaucoma is with a complete eye exam. A glaucoma screening that only checks eye pressure is not enough to find glaucoma.

Types of Eye Exams for Glaucoma Screening

A complete eye exam includes five common tests to detect glaucoma. The five factors that should be checked before making a glaucoma diagnosis:

Tonometry measures the pressure within your eye. During tonometry, eye drops are used to numb the eye. A tiny instrument is used to touch the surface of your eye and flatten the cornea, which measures the pressure. A small amount of pressure is applied to the eye by a tiny device or by a warm puff of air.

Ophthalmoscopy – This test takes pictures of your retina and optic nerve. Your ophthalmologist dilates your pupils, then uses a special digital camera to capture images.  Many ophthalmologists use a special machine called optical coherence tomography. You rest your chin on a machine and look into a lens. The machine takes pictures for a minute or two without touching your eye. Imagery shows the layers of eye tissue and maps the area.

Perimetry is a visual field test that produces a map of your complete field of vision. Visual field testing can also show how severe glaucoma is. Multiple tests may be used over time in glaucoma to determine how quickly it’s progressing.

Your ophthalmologist asks you to look at an object straight ahead, such as their nose. They may ask you to cover one eye at a time. ahead. After glaucoma has been diagnosed, visual field tests are usually done one to two times a year to check for any changes in your vision.

Gonioscopy shows the angle where your cornea (the clear outer layer of your eye) meets your iris (the colored part of your eye). Your eye’s drainage system is at this angle.  Your ophthalmologist uses eye drops to numb your eye, then touches your cornea with a special lens. The lens indicates whether the angle is open or closed. The drainage system may be blocked if the angle is closed, indicating glaucoma.

Pachymetry is a simple, painless test to measure the thickness of your cornea. Your ophthalmologist numbs your eye with drops, then touches your eye with a small probe to measure the thickness of your cornea. 

If you have one or more risk factors of glaucoma or are over age 40 and have not been screened, talk to one of our ophthalmologists. Contact our office and request an appointment at one of our locations. Call 516-785-3900(Wantagh office) or 516-541-4141 (Massapequa office) to schedule an appointment. 

Sources:

American Academy of Ophthalmology

Glaucoma Research Foundation

LASIK surgery (laser-assisted in-situ keratomileusis) is a refractive surgery and is the number one performed laser vision correction procedure.  In most cases, patients elect to have LASIK when they get tired of wearing corrective lenses, such as contacts or glasses.

Although there are no guarantees with LASIK, most patients report impressive improvements in their vision after the procedure. Choosing to have a procedure like LASIK is not just about seeing better, it’s about living better.

Am I a Good Candidate for LASIK?

LASIK is FDA-approved for people aged 18 and older who’ve had a stable eyeglass or contact lens prescription for at least two years in a row, and whose eyes are generally healthy. Your ophthalmologist will thoroughly examine your eyes and make sure you are a candidate for LASIK. 

The procedure may not be recommended for people with symptoms such as:

LASIK isn’t appropriate for everyone. If you are considering LASIK, talk to your ophthalmologist about the benefits and risks — including the potential for quality-of-life issues.

What can I Expect during surgery?

Before the procedure, the eye surgeon will do an exam to check the shape and thickness of the cornea, look for refractive errors, and take detailed measurements of the eye. You will be examined by your ophthalmologist to ensure there are no eye problems.

The surgery should take less than 30 minutes. During the procedure, the eye is first numbed using special eye drops. Your surgeon will place an eyelid holder on your eye to keep you from blinking. He or she will also place a suction ring on your eye to keep it from moving. It will feel as if a finger is pressing firmly onto your eyelid. At this point, your vision will become dim or black.

The surgeon uses a laser called a microkeratome. While your ophthalmologist is using the laser, you will hear a clicking sound. After reshaping the cornea, your eye surgeon folds the flap back down into position and smoothes the edges. The flap attaches on its own in 2–3 minutes, where it will heal in place.

What Can I Expect after Surgery?

If you’re tired of wearing eyeglasses or contact lenses, contact our office to see if LASIK surgery is right for you. Call 516-785-3900 (Wantagh office) or 516-541-4141 (Massapequa office) to schedule an appointment.

Sources: American Academy of OphthalmologyHarvard Medical School

Your eye health is important. By scheduling regular eye exams, you can stay ahead of possible problems along the way. But what happens when something unexpected occurs? If you have sudden changes in your vision, knowing when to seek help is critical in preventing permanent vision loss. 

A common source of unexpected eye problems is retinal detachment. This happens when your retina (a light-sensitive layer of tissue in the back of your eye) is pulled away from its normal position at the back of your eye. If the retinal detachment isn’t treated right away, more of the retina can detach — which increases the risk of permanent vision loss or blindness.

Immediate symptoms can include:

Who is at risk for retinal detachment?
Anyone can have a retinal detachment, but you are at higher risk if:

How is retinal detachment treated?

There are 3 types of surgery that doctors can do to fix a detached retina:

The type of surgery you need will depend on several things, including how much of your retina is detached and where in your eye it detached. Your doctor will talk to you about what type they recommend, and about the risks and benefits of surgery. Some people may need more than one type of surgery at once.


What is pneumatic retinopexy surgery?

In pneumatic retinopexy, your doctor will inject a small air bubble into your eye. The bubble will push your retina back into place so your doctor can use a laser or freeze treatment to repair any holes or tears. 

During surgery, your doctor will:

What is scleral buckle surgery?

During scleral buckle surgery, your doctor will put a tiny, flexible band around the white part of your eye. This part of the eye is called the sclera.

The band pushes gently on the sides of your eye and moves them inward toward your retina, which helps your retina reattach. The band will stay on your eye permanently after the surgery. Your doctor may also use a laser or freeze treatment to repair any tears in your retina.

Typically you’ll be under anesthesia so you won’t feel anything or remember the surgery. Most people can go home the same day, but you’ll need someone to drive you home.

What is a vitrectomy surgery?

Vitrectomy is similar to pneumatic retinopexy, but it’s a longer surgery and usually happens in a hospital instead of your doctor’s office.

Think you may have a retinal detachment? Contact our office immediately and request an appointment at one of our locations. Call 516-785-3900 (Wantagh office) or 516-541-4141 (Massapequa office) to schedule an appointment. 

Source: National Eye Institute

Optimal eye health is essential to your everyday living. It allows you to see clearly and enjoy everything in its entirety…But what happens when your ability to see, isn’t always clear? Cataracts are a common, age-related clouding of the clear lens that focuses the light in our eye.  This can begin happening after the age of 40, with certain diseases like diabetes, and with the use of certain medications such as steroid injections or pills or chemotherapy.

With cataracts, your vision may:

While cataracts are not dangerous or threatening, they can be a real inconvenience in your day to day tasks such as reading, driving, or watching tv. They tend to start small and evolve into larger vision obstructions over time. The risk of getting cataracts increases with age, but that doesn’t mean that younger people can’t be affected.

Initial treatment for cataracts usually begins conservatively using eyeglasses or simply turning on brighter lights. But as cataracts progress, they may require vision restoration surgery.

What Can I expect With Cataract Surgery?

Cataract removal surgery at South Shore Eye Care is performed at the Garden City Surgery Center.  This same day operation takes 15 minutes or less and is performed in a state of art center equipped with a Femtosecond Laser.

During surgery, your cloudy natural lens is removed and replaced with a clear artificial lens. That lens is called an intraocular lens (IOL).  Your surgeon will measure your eye to determine the proper focusing power for your IOL.  Oftentimes patients, just simply by having cataract surgery reduce or eliminate their need for glasses.  At South Shore Eye Care, our Board certified surgeons offer the latest technology in IOL lenses including those that remove astigmatism, as well as that the can “Extend Depth of Focus” – allowing patients to see not only at distance, but also things at arm’s length like the dashboard in their car or a computer on a desk.

Pre-Op Expectations

Day of Expectations

The Surgery

Post-Op Expectations

Think you may be a candidate for cataract surgery? Contact our office and request an appointment at one of our locations. Call 516-785-3900 (Wantagh office) or 516-541-4141 (Massapequa office) to schedule an appointment. Our ophthalmologists will talk with you about the risks and benefits of cataract surgery.

Source: American Academy of Ophthalmology

What is Age-related Macular Degeneration?

Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a degenerative eye disease that causes damage to the macula. The macula is the center most part of the retina and is responsible for central vision. AMD affects more than 16 million Americans and is the leading cause of blindness in people over the age of 65. Often times, people with AMD can experience blurriness or distortion of images and potentially lose their central vision. AMD is a progressive condition, that can get worse over time, however, changes are often gradual. 

Who is at risk for developing Age-related Macular Degeneration?

The greatest risk factor for AMD is age, which increases significantly once you turn 50. Other risk factors include:

What are the types of Macular Degeneration?

There are two types of macular degeneration, dry and wet. 80% of people with AMD have the dry form. In this condition the tissues of the macula begin to thin with age and tiny clumps of protein called drusen form beneath the retina. People with dry AMD typically experience less severe and slower vision loss. Unfortunately, there is no way to treat dry macular degeneration at this time. A recent large study suggests that a daily dose of nutritional supplements and vitamins can slow the progression of dry AMD by up to 25%.  

The wet form of AMD develops in about 10-20% of people. This form is more serious and occurs when new, abnormal blood vessels grow under the retina. These fragile vessels can leak blood and the blood causes scarring of the macula. Wet AMD progresses more rapidly than dry AMD and can potentially cause a complete loss of your central vision. Thankfully there are treatments for wet AMD.  The most common treatment is an injection of anti-VEGF medication into the eye. These drugs help reduce the number of abnormal blood vessels in the retina and slow down leakage. 

Because many conditions evolve over time, it is important to see your ophthalmologist regularly to check for any retina or vision changes. If you have any questions regarding AMD, contact our office or call 516-785-3900 (Wantagh office) or 516-541-4141 (Massapequa office) to schedule an appointment.

When it comes to your vision, the cornea plays a critical role in your ability to see things clearly. Defined as the “windshield” to the eye, the cornea refracts and focuses light.  What most people don’t realize is that the shape of your cornea affects the overall ability for it to function. Even a slightly misshapen cornea can result in reduced eye sight.

In some cases individuals are bor­­n with a tendency for “weak” collagen in their corneas and as they get older their corneas start to warp or become misshapen.  This can happen as early as the teen years. Some individuals inadvertently induce these warped shapes by either rubbing their eyes too much (often due to severe allergies) or by receiving laser vision correction.  The end result is poor quality vision that is NOT correctable with glasses or soft contact lenses.  This is because patients have what is either called corneal ectasia or keratoconus.

In patients with an acceleration of keratoconus, their cornea warps even more quickly, resulting in a severe “cone” or even corneal scar when its inner layer breaks.  These patients may end up needing a corneal transplant at a very young age.  Because these disorders can affect young people, cornea surgeons were excited in 2013 when the FDA approved cornea collagen cross-linking which can help combat further degeneration of the cornea.

Cornea Collagen Cross-linking uses the vitamin Riboflavin in the form of eye drops to soak the cornea.  The riboflavin is then activated by the doctor who focuses a UV beam directly on the cornea.  This procedure, done in the doctor’s office, is the first treatment that may help to halt the progression of keratoconus and hopefully prevent corneal transplants in these patients.

To learn more about Cornea Collagen Cross-linking contact our office. We are one of the most trusted eye surgeons in New York. Call 516-785-3900 (Wantagh office) or 516-541-4141 (Massapequa office) to schedule an appointment.

It’s easy to assume that workplace eye hazards only apply to industrial, medical, or lab related fields, but the reality is that desk jobs also pose a risk to eye safety.

According to the American Academy of Ophthalmology, the average American worker spends 7 hours a day on a computer or hand held device, which can lead to vision related problems such as Digital Eye Strain. The reason? Viewing a computer or digital screen is different than reading a printed page. Often the letters on the computer or handheld device are not as sharply defined, the level of contrast to the background is reduced, and the presence of glare on the screen may make viewing difficult, which in turn makes your eyes work harder.

Digital eye strain can be subtle and produce seemingly unrelated symptoms. Signs and symptoms include:

Think you’re suffering from Digital Eye Strain? Contact our office and request an appointment at one of our locations. Call 516-785-3900 (Wantagh office) or 516-541-4141 (Massapequa office) to schedule an appointment.

To help alleviate digital eye strain, experts say to follow the 20-20-20 rule; take a 20-second break to view something 20 feet away every 20 minutes.

20-20-20 To Prevent Digital Eye Strain

Simple additional lifestyle changes to your daily routine can greatly reduce your digital eye strain. Try the following tips for a healthier, more refreshed vision.

  1. Adjust the lighting. When watching television, keep the room softly lit. When reading printed materials or doing close work, try to position the light source behind you and direct the light onto your page.
  2. Limit screen time. This is especially important for children, who may not make the connection between extended viewing, eyestrain and the need to rest their eyes regularly.
  3. Choose the right eyewear for you. If you need glasses or contacts and work at a computer, consider investing in glasses or contact lenses designed specifically for computer work (blue light glasses). By wearing blue light glasses, you can help increase screen contrast, making it easier to focus and subsequently reduce eye strain.
  1. Blink often to refresh your eyes. Many people blink less than usual when working at a computer, which can contribute to dry eyes. Blinking produces tears that moisten and refresh your eyes. Try to make it a habit to blink more often when looking at a monitor.
  2. Adjust your monitor. Position your monitor directly in front of you about an arm’s length away so that the top of the screen is at or just below eye level. It helps to have a chair you can adjust too.
  3. Use a document holder. If you need to refer to print material while you work on your computer, place it on a document holder. Some holders are designed to be placed between the keyboard and monitor; others are placed to the side. Find one that works for you. The goal is to reduce how much your eyes need to readjust and how often you turn your neck and head.
  4. Adjust your screen settings. Enlarge the type for easier reading. And adjust the contrast and brightness to a level that’s comfortable for you.

Source: https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/eyestrain/diagnosis-treatment/drc-20372403

Workplace eye safety is becoming an increasing topic of conversation for many employees and employers. Historically, both have been unaware of the need for eye protection and more specifically, the need for the correct type of eye protection based on occupation and environment.

According to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) every day about 2,000 U.S. workers sustain job-related eye injuries, 90% of which could have been prevented by simply using the correct type of eye protection. A survey done by the Bureau of Labor Statistics revealed that nearly three out of five incurred injuries were not wearing eye protection at the time of the accident. The reason? They believed protection was not required for the situation.

It’s an alarming statistic that has garnered the need for more workplace education about safety protocols and proper personal protective equipment or PPE. So what exactly does that mean?

The most common potential eye hazards are:

Some working conditions include multiple eye hazards and proper eye protection means taking ALL of them into account.

For example:

It’s important to note that conventional (dress) glasses are not an acceptable alternative as they do not provide enough protection to meet the OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) requirement for many work environments. Although safety glasses can look like normal dress eyewear, they are designed to provide significantly more eye protection and must be properly fit.

If you suspect an eye injury, do not hesitate to contact our office and request an emergency appointment at one of our locations. We treat a wide range of eye injuries and are one of the most trusted eye surgeons in New York. It’s important that you are seen as soon as possible to prevent any lasting damage or vision loss. Call 516-785-3900 (Wantagh office) or 516-541-4141 (Massapequa office) to schedule an appointment.

In the event of an injury, here are some recommended steps from the American Academy of Ophthalmology to follow until you can see your ophthalmologist.

IF YOU GET SAND OR SMALL PARTICLES IN THE EYE

DO NOT:

DO:

IF YOU GET CHEMICALS IN YOUR EYE

DO:

IF YOU RECEIVE A BLOW TO THE EYE: 

DO NOT:

DO:

IF YOUR EYE IS CUT OR PUNCTURED

DO NOT:

DO:

FOR ALL OTHER EYE INJURIES

DO NOT:

DO:

Workplace eye hazards are inevitable in all types of occupations, but both employers and employees can take these additional steps to help ensure a safer work environment for your eyes.

  1. Know the eye safety dangers of your environment.
  2. Eliminate known hazards before work begins.
  3. Use and provide proper eye protection.
  4. Keep safety eyewear in good condition and replace it when damaged.