Houston seniors need to know about the symptoms of cataracts as developing a cataract is a pretty common occurrence as we transcend our 50’s, 60’s and 70’s.  In fact more than 20 million Americans age 40 and older have cataracts and more than half of all Americans over 65 have some degree of cataract development. Cataracts are actually a leading cause of vision loss among seniors. We are quite fortunate in that with cataract surgery and lens implants we can readily help people achieve very good vision and lead a normal active lifestyle.

Symptoms of Cataracts

 

A cataract is a clouding of the crystalline lens of the eye preventing light rays from passing through it easily. For many patients cataracts start out slowly and have little effect on vision at first. As the cataract progresses it often results in a clouding and blurring of vision. As the cataract becomes denser, so does the impact on vision. Other common symptoms that bother patients with cataracts can includedimming of vision, sensitivity to light and glare,double vision in one eye,poor night vision, fading or yellowing of colors and a need forfrequent changes in glasses or contact lens prescriptions. While these are the visual symptoms, people do not realize is that the poor vision in seniors is often associated with premature or accelerated mental decline and that reduced vision creates difficulty with mobility and safety  and thus can also put patients at increased risk for orthopedic injury-especially hip fracture.

cataract surgery

Treatment of Cataracts

 

When cataracts begin to interfere with daily activities or with patient comfort, mobility and safety, they can be treated surgically. Cataract surgery is one of the safest and most frequently performed surgeries in the United States. Today, we have a full range of lens implants available that allow us to correct nearsightedness, farsightedness, astigmatism and even near vision problems after cataract surgery, as well as distance vision, without requiring bifocals or reading glasses for the vast majority of patients.

If you or someone you know has questions about symptoms or treatment of cataracts, cataracts in general, cataract surgery or lens implants please call The Eye Clinic of Texas, an affiliate of Houston Eye Associates, at 800-423-3937, visit The Eye Clinic of Texas or facebook.com/ecot.lasik to schedule an appointment.

The Eye Clinic of Texas is an affiliate of Houston Eye Associates, the largest ophthalmology clinic in the nation. We are a leading eye care practice serving the greater Houston, Galveston, League City and Texas City with offices at 1100 Gulf Freeway, Suite 114, League City, Texas 77573, 7111 Medical Center Drive, Suite 110, Texas City, Texas 77590 and 2302 Avenue P, Galveston, Texas 77550.

Our health conscious Houston community often asks about ways to reduce their risk of eye diseases such as cataracts. It may be possible that there is an association between your risk of cataracts and your intake of certain vitamins and antioxidants according to researchers reporting their results in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

Fruits & Veggies

Until now, studies have been inconsistent regarding the association between blood antioxidants or vitamins and risk of age-related cataract. By performing a meta analysis of 13 different studies researchers found the  lower the  level of vitamin E, α-carotene, lutein and zeaxanthin, the  greater the  risk of age-related cataract in Asian populations but not in Western populations, whereas β-Carotene, lycopene, and β-cryptoxanthin  had no significant association with risk of cataract. While these results look somewhat interesting, the question remains whether increasing intake through dietary supplements actually have any role in decreasing the risk of cataract formation.

If you or someone you know has questions about cataract risks, cataract in general, cataract surgery or lens implants please call The Eye Clinic of Texas, an affiliate of Houston Eye Associates, at 800-423-3937, visit The Eye Clinic of Texas or facebook.com/ecot.lasik to schedule an appointment.

The Eye Clinic of Texas is an affiliate of Houston Eye Associates, the largest ophthalmology clinic in the nation. We are a leading eye care practice serving the greater Houston, Galveston, League City and Texas City with offices at 1100 Gulf Freeway, Suite 114, League City, Texas 77573, 7111 Medical Center Drive, Suite 110, Texas City, Texas 77590 and 2302 Avenue P, Galveston, Texas 77550.

Taking Omega 3 supplements has been tested for helping age related macular degeneration (AMD). We know that taking diet supplements with antioxidant vitamins C and E, Beta Carotene andZinc-the “AREDS Supplement Formulation”-has been shown to reduce the risk of progression to advanced age-related macular degeneration (AMD) in the Age-Related Eye Disease Study (AREDS). In addition to this “AREDS Supplement Formulation”, some data suggests that increased dietary intake of lutein + zeaxanthin (carotenoids), omega-3 long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (docosahexaenoic acid [DHA] + eicosapentaenoic acid [EPA]), or both might further reduce this risk.

Researchers from the Age Related Eye Disease 2 (AREDS) Research Group reporting in the  Journal of the  American Medical Associationconcluded that the addition of lutein + zeaxanthin, DHA + EPA, or both to the AREDS formulation did not further reduce risk of progression to advanced AMD but lutein + zeaxanthin could be an appropriate carotenoid substitute in the AREDS formulation for former smokers who were at risk for lung cancer.

If you or someone you know has questions about supplements and vitamins for age related macular degeneration (AMD) please call The Eye Clinic of Texas, an affiliate of Houston Eye Associates, visit The Eye Clinic of Texas or facebook.com/ecot.lasik to schedule an appointment.

The Eye Clinic of Texas is an affiliate of Houston Eye Associates, the largest ophthalmology clinic in the nation. We are a leading eye care practice serving the greater Houston, Galveston, League City and Texas City with offices at 1100 Gulf Freeway, Suite 114, League City, Texas 77573, 7111 Medical Center Drive, Suite 110, Texas City, Texas 77590 and 2302 Avenue P, Galveston, Texas 77550.

 

 

fireworks4

 

The eye doctors and staff at The Eye Clinic of Texas alerted patients getting ready to celebrate the July 4th holiday to use both common sense and caution when enjoying fireworks displays. Eye safety is quite critical with fireworks as fireworks related eye injuries are the second most frequent injury we see from emergency room each July 4th weekend.

Some common sense precautions everyone can take to prevent eye injuries includes:
• Never let kids play with fireworks of any type.
• Do not purchase, use or store fireworks of any type-leave it to professionals.
• Attend only authorized public fireworks displays conducted by licensed operators

Keep in mind that even professional displays can be dangerous. However, if an eye accident does occur, there are a few things you should know:

• Do not rub the eye.
• Do not attempt to rinse out the eye. This can be even more damaging than rubbing.
• Do not apply pressure to the eye itself-but protecting the eye from further contact with any item, including the person’s hand.
• Do not stop for medicine! Over-the-counter pain relievers will not do much to relieve pain. Aspirin (should never be given to children) and ibuprofen can thin the blood, increasing bleeding. Take the person to the emergency room at once.
• Do not apply ointments or drops. They may not be sterile and may make the area around the eye slippery and harder for the doctor to examine.

Once you are seen in the emergency room please feel free to have them call The Eye Clinic of Texas at 800-423-3937 as we always have an eye doctor “on call” to provide consultation and continued care for you.

If you or someone you know has questions about fireworks eye safety and eye injuries please call The Eye Clinic of Texas, an affiliate of Houston Eye Associates, at 800-423-3937, visit The Eye Clinic of Texas or facebook.com/ecot.lasik to schedule an appointment.
The Eye Clinic of Texas is an affiliate of Houston Eye Associates, the largest ophthalmology clinic in the nation. We are a leading eye care practice serving the greater Houston, Galveston, League City and Texas City with offices at 1100 Gulf Freeway, Suite 114, League City, Texas 77573, 7111 Medical Center Drive, Suite 110, Texas City, Texas 77590 and 2302 Avenue P, Galveston, Texas 77550.

 

 

It is disappointing and disconcerting that patients may only have a limited understanding of diabetes, diabetic retinopathy and its treatment. A recent study exploring patients’ understanding of the risk factors, cause and controllability of their own diabetic retinopathy revealed considerable misunderstanding, gaps in knowledge and potentially damaging beliefs about the cause and treatment of diabetic retinopathy.

Focus groups and interviews were conducted with patients with diabetic retinopathy (DR)-nearly half of whom had severe proliferative DR-a serious complication. Most of these patients had also undergone laser treatment. At the conclusion of the study, patients were found to have had a reasonable understanding of the basic risk factors for DR, such as diabetes control, but they were less clear about specific risk factors such as blood pressure and lipid control.

Most patients attributed their DR either to poor diabetes control or to failings of the health care system, rather than having a basic understanding of the small blood vessel disease including circulatory and oxygen deprivation that results from the damaged blood vessels in the retina. Some patients believed that their DR was a result of health aspects beyond their control or environmental factors, whereas others were unsure about the cause.

Improving patients’ understanding of the major risk factors for DR as well as helping them have a better understanding of the causes of diabetic retinopathy and being able to grasp expectations of realistic outcomes of laser treatment may improve patients’ coping mechanisms, adaption to disease and ocular outcomes.

If you or someone you know has questions about diabetic retinopathy call The Eye Clinic of Texas, an affiliate of Houston Eye Associates, at 800-423-3937, visit The Eye Clinic of Texas or facebook.com/ecot.lasik to schedule an appointment.

The Eye Clinic of Texas is an affiliate of Houston Eye Associates, the largest ophthalmology clinic in the nation. We are a leading eye care practice serving the greater Houston, Galveston, League City and Texas City with offices at 1100 Gulf Freeway, Suite 114, League City, Texas 77573, 7111 Medical Center Drive, Suite 110, Texas City, Texas 77590 and 2302 Avenue P, Galveston, Texas 77550.

There are a number of types of eyelid lumps and bumps that we often encounter at The Eye Clinic of Texas. Hordeolum is a common, painful inflammation of the eyelid that is usually caused by a bacterial infection of the oil glands in the eyelid and results in a lump. Most often, the infected lump drains and heals by itself with no treatment. However, the infection can sometimes spread to other glands in the eyes and can become longer lasting or even turn into a cyst which is called a chalazion. Hordeolum can be internal, on the inside of the eyelid, or external, on the outside of the eyelid near the eyelashes-where it is known as a stye. Common treatments for hordeolum include warm compresses applied at home, prescription and non prescription lid scrubs, antibiotics, steroids, lid massages and others types of treatment.

If you or someone you know is concerned about eyelid lumps & bumps such as hordeolum, stye or chalazion, please call The Eye Clinic of Texas, an affiliate of Houston Eye Associates, at 800-423-3937, visit The Eye Clinic of Texas or facebook.com/ecot.lasik to schedule an appointment.

The Eye Clinic of Texas is an affiliate of Houston Eye Associates, the largest ophthalmology clinic in the nation. We are a leading eye care practice serving the greater Houston, Galveston, League City and Texas City with offices at 1100 Gulf Freeway, Suite 114, League City, Texas 77573, 7111 Medical Center Drive, Suite 110, Texas City, Texas 77590 and 2302 Avenue P, Galveston, Texas 77550.

A Pinguecula is a common, non-cancerous growth of the clear, thin tissue covering the eye called the conjunctiva. The growth is raised slightly from the surface of the white part of the eye called sclera. While the exact cause is unknown long-term sunlight exposure and eye irritation may be factors. Welding is a major job-related risk. Usually no treatment is needed however keeping the eye moist with artificial tears may help prevent the area from becoming inflamed. Sometimes the temporary use of mild steroid eye drops can also be helpful.

Occasionally the growth may need to be removed for comfort or for cosmetic reasons especially if it grows over the cornea and impairs vision. Laser treatment for Pinguecula may be an option where other types of treatment have not been satisfactory according to researchers reporting in the journal Cornea. The overall cosmetic results were excellent or good in 90.5% of laser-treated cases and the laser treated cases had minimal scarring or hemorrhage. They concluded that argon laser photocoagulation is an effective and safe method for removing a Pinguecula for cosmetic purposes and the laser method facilitates control of the extent and depth of removal and thus minimizes conjunctival defects and other complications.

If you or someone you know has a question about Laser treatment for Pinguecula, please to call The Eye Clinic of Texas, an affiliate of Houston Eye Associates, at 800-423-3937, visit The Eye Clinic of Texas or facebook.com/ecot.lasik to schedule an appointment.

The Eye Clinic of Texas is an affiliate of Houston Eye Associates, the largest ophthalmology clinic in the nation. We are a leading eye care practice serving the greater Houston, Galveston, League City and Texas City with offices at 1100 Gulf Freeway, Suite 114, League City, Texas 77573, 7111 Medical Center Drive, Suite 110, Texas City, Texas 77590 and 2302 Avenue P, Galveston, Texas 77550.

Protecting your eyes from UV is a necessary precaution-especially in the Houston sun-in order to avoid eye damage and injury. Exposure to UV has been linked to many eye problems and in some instances is thought to quicken the onset of eye diseases such as cataract, age related macular degeneration (AMD), certain cancers on the delicate skin around the eye, Pterygia-a growth of white tissue on the surface of the eye-and even photokeratitis, a type of sunburn of the cornea. May marks Ultraviolet (UV) Eye Protection Awareness Month and The Eye Clinic of Texas wants to comment on UV protective eyewear and common sense precautions people should take to preserve eye health and vision.

Some precautions regarding UV eye protection include:

  • Always wear sunglasses that block 100% of UVA and UVB rays. Sunglasses without UV protection may shade the eyes but actually cause the pupils to dilate, allowing in even more harmful rays.
  • Wear a brimmed hat along with sunglasses that block 100% of UVA and UVB rays.
  • Choose wrap-around sunglasses to protect the eyes and the skin around the eyes.
  • Be aware that although some contact lenses may offer UV protection, they cannot protect the entire eye and the skin around it.
  • Choose sunglasses made of unbreakable polycarbonate, especially for children and for those who lead active lifestyles.
  • Be sure to ask your doctor about the photosensitizing side effects of any medications that you might take.
  • Always wear eye protection when using a tanning bed. According the American Academy of Ophthalmology, tanning beds can produce UV levels up to 100 times more than the sun, which can cause serious damage to the external and internal structures of the eye and eyelids.

The Eye Clinic of Texas has a wide range of UV protecting eyeglass lenses available to choose from. Eye protection from UV needs to be complete but doesn’t have to be overly expensive. High quality sunglasses should block out 99-100 percent of both UV-A and UV-B radiation. It is also important to have UV protection in everyday eyewear, which is readily available with a number of UV blocking eyeglass lens materials, specialized coatings and photochromic lenses. Patients visiting The Eye Clinic of Texas can speak with our staff who will be able to provide the proper counseling and fitting of UV protecting lenses and eyewear. These eye care professionals can offer a wide variety of UV blocking lenses, coatings and color changing lenses to keep you safe.

If you or someone you know has a question or concerns about ultraviolet (UV) eye damage and injury and how to select protective eyewear please call The Eye Clinic of Texas, an affiliate of Houston Eye Associates, at 800-423-3937, visit The Eye Clinic of Texas or facebook.com/ecot.lasik to schedule an appointment.

The Eye Clinic of Texas is an affiliate of Houston Eye Associates, the largest ophthalmology clinic in the nation. We are a leading eye care practice serving the greater Houston, Galveston, League City and Texas City with offices at 1100 Gulf Freeway, Suite 114, League City, Texas 77573, 7111 Medical Center Drive, Suite 110, Texas City, Texas 77590 and 2302 Avenue P, Galveston, Texas 77550.

The effective treatment of a type of glaucoma called Normal Tension Glaucoma can be more difficult in patients with vascular disease.  Normal Tension Glaucoma is a less frequently found-but important type of glaucoma-that is characterized by patients having “normal” intraocular pressure but still experiencing eye damage such as loss of their visual field or “side vision” and optic nerve damage. Researchers at the World Glaucoma Congress reported that certain patients who suffer from Normal Tension Glaucoma who also have vascular disease or even a predisposition to vascular disease such as a family history of stroke, the presence of cardiovascular disease or migraine may not be as easy to treat in avoiding the progression of Normal Tension Glaucoma. In fact, these factors related to vascular disease may indicate less effectiveness of eye pressure (IOP) treatment putting patients at greater risk. The the Collaborative Normal Tension Glaucoma Study is the landmark study for guiding treatment-in which 65% of patients in the untreated group of that study never showed any progression during 7 years of follow-up. But, for those at greater risk due to some other vascular disease we have to be diligent in our examinations and testing to help preserve eye health and vision.

If you or someone you know has vascular disease or is concerned about their risk of glaucoma, please call The Eye Clinic of Texas, an affiliate of Houston Eye Associates, at 800-423-3937, visit The Eye Clinic of Texas or facebook.com/ecot.lasik to schedule an appointment.

The Eye Clinic of Texas is an affiliate of Houston Eye Associates, the largest ophthalmology clinic in the nation. We are a leading eye care practice serving the greater Houston, Galveston, League City and Texas City with offices at 1100 Gulf Freeway, Suite 114, League City, Texas 77573, 7111 Medical Center Drive, Suite 110, Texas City, Texas 77590 and 2302 Avenue P, Galveston, Texas 77550.

You can prevent sports related eye injuries with proper eye protection and protective eyewear. April is Sports Eye Safety Awareness Month and the American Academy of Ophthalmology asks eye doctors to remind Houston residents who are athletes or who participate in sports of any type that 40,000 people suffer from eye injuries related to sports every year. These eye injuries from sports can be devastating, and the only way to prevent them is by wearing protective eyewear. The range and risk of sports eye injury can span corneal abrasions, eyelid bruises, retinal detachments and inner eye hemorrhage. The more serious risks can involve permanent vision loss as well as permanent disability.

Amateur athletes, school athletes and anyone participating in sports really needs to use eye protection. Specific designs are available for most sports, including basketball, baseball, hockey, football, lacrosse, fencing, paintball, water polo, golf and others. Athletes and sports participants should understand that wearing properly fitted protective eyewear will not harm their performance or interfere with their activity-and it may well save their eye health and vision. 90 percent of serious eye injuries are preventable. Make sure the level of eye protection you or others in your family use is appropriate for the type of activity. Regular eyeglasses do not offer proper eye protection. Stay safe with sport-specific protective eyewear properly fitted by an eye care professional. Lenses made from polycarbonate materials provide the highest level of impact protection; they can withstand a ball or other projectile traveling at 90 miles per hour.

If you or someone you know has questions or would like help in selecting, fitting or choosing sports protective eyeglasses, please call The Eye Clinic of Texas, an affiliate of Houston Eye Associates, at 800-423-3937, visit The Eye Clinic of Texas or facebook.com/ecot.lasik to schedule an appointment.

The Eye Clinic of Texasis an affiliate of Houston Eye Associates, the largest ophthalmology clinic in the nation. We are a leading eye care practice serving the greater Houston, Galveston, League City and Texas City with offices at 7155 Katy Road, Houston, Texas 77573, 1100 Gulf Freeway, Suite 114, League City, Texas 77573, 711 Medical Center Drive, Suite 110, Texas City, Texas 77590 and 2302 Avenue P, Galveston, Texas 77550 that provide all aspects of general, medical, surgical, laser and optical eye care services.