Macular Degeneration

August 9, 2010

Macular Degeneration is the leading cause of blindness.

Today’s blog topic covers the eye condition known as age-related macular degeneration (AMD), a condition that causes vision loss due to damage to the retina. With an estimated 2.95 people being afflicted by advanced AMD by 2020, it is vital for patients to be screened and treated for this degenerative disease. Since it is the leading cause of blindness in the US, AMD cannot be ignored.

Symptoms:

  • Blurred vision or a gradual loss of central vision
  • The appearance of drusen in your eyes, which is a yellowish or white accumulation of extracellular material
  • Trouble distinguishing between dark and light colors
  • Slow to have normal vision after being in bright light
  • Side or “peripheral” vision unaffected (though in rare cases, peripheral vision is affected by AMD.)

The disease is diagnosed as two different types, “dry” and “wet:”

  • The “dry” form of the disease is much more common and occurs where tissue deterioration in the macula is not accompanied by blood.  The deterioration of the retina is associated with the formation of small yellow deposits, known as drusen, under the macula. This phenomena leads to a thinning and drying out of the macula, causing the macula to lose its function (4). The amount of central vision loss is directly related to the location and amount of retinal thinning caused by the drusen.

  • Wet AMD is a complication of the dry form and results from fragile blood vessels beneath the macula and the retina. Blood and fluid leak out of these vessels, the reason for the “wet” designation. Wet AMD can progress rapidly, making prompt treatment and regular eye care appointments vital.

Treatments for AMD:

  • The focus for patients should be on preventing the onset of AMD as opposed to reversing the disease, since AMD is not 100% curable. Frequent exams with optometrists or retina specialists are the best option for identifying warning signs and establishing treatment options.
  • For dry macular, medical or surgical treatment options are not currently available. However, some studies have suggested that some vitamin supplements or diets that have high dosages of certain antibiotics can potentially slow the spread of dry AMD.
  • Injection treatments for wet AMD include Lucentis and Asvastin, two drugs that are injected directly into the eye. Don’t be alarmed; a very thin needle is used and the experience is not traumatic.
  • Other options include surgery and laser treatments. Your eye care doctors can advise you on available options available and associated risks.

Patients who visit the office of Dr. Akamine Davidson will experience a slower-paced exam, which is tailored for the needs of individuals who have limited vision issues such as AMD.

  • Usage of the Feinblooom Chart which features larger-sized numbers/letters and is intended to be set 10 feet from patients instead of at the more standard 20-feet distance.
  • Extra time is allowed for exams so patients are never rushed. This is especially important for those dealing with the frustrations associated with limited vision.
  • Trial frames are tried using various lenses, which allows for more natural viewing

As with many medical conditions, early diagnosis can make all the difference. While it is not curable, the progression of AMD can be slowed or stopped providing symptoms are caught early and proper treatment options are followed.

The office of Sandra Akamine Davidson is a full-service seven staff member facility located in Riverside California. Along with her associate Dr. Leanna Parisi, Dr. Akamine Davidson oversees a comprehensive eye care center, including eye examinations, LASIK consultations, retina photography and low vision evaluations. The office also features the latest in lenses and frames which include Transitions lenses and high-end frame designs including Prada, Dolce & Gabbana, and Ray-Ban. More information can be found at the office site at www.sandradavidsonod.com

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Using technology like iTerminal, Eye Focus on You.

Thanks for visiting our blog! We plan to cover all aspects of eye care, keeping you informed about new developments in the industry and tips on making sure you receive proper care.

Today we are exploring the benefits of the new iTerminal device, an interactive dispensary system that helps patients select the perfect eyeglasses. The iTerminal is manufactured by Carl Zeiss Vision, a worldwide leader in developing and manufacturing ophthalmic lenses, lens coatings and dispensary technologies.

With eyeglasses, the right fit is of paramount performance. The key is for patients to forget they are wearing glasses and to simply enjoy being able to see properly. For many patients, selecting the right eyewear can be a frustrating experience that can end with patients paying money for ill-fitting glasses. At the office of Dr. Sandra Akamine Davidson, we are committed to making sure our patients leave our office with attractive glasses that provide the best vision possible. As the first optometrist office in the Inland Empire to feature the iTerminal, we are privileged to change the process of choosing and fitting eyeglasses with an interactive exercise. The machine is an added tool that helps our expert staff members provide patients with personal advice about the wisest choice of frames and lenses for their facial structure as well as their vision.

Benefits of the iTerminal:

Superior Measurements

  • Consistent measurements ensure proper fitting and lens performance.
  • Measurements can be taken to within 0.1mm, making the perfect fit possible.
  • Precise measuring means fewer lens remakes are required, which saves money.

Lens Customization

  • Automatically takes measurements such as lens tilt and frame wrap for the individual patient.
  • Dispenser machine can add tint and photochromics so patients can see how lens enhancements.
  • iTerminal can be used with any lens brands, not only with Zeiss models

Special Interactive Features

  • A special mirror allows patients to see themselves in various frame choices, especially important for those patients whose vision requires stronger/thicker lenses.
  • Device features a high quality digital camera, which allows patients to see both front and profile pictures and compare multiple frames, side-by-side.

With the iTerminal machine, Dr. Akamine Davidson’s office is pleased to provide a new interactive tool for patient satisfaction. Visit our blog often, for fresh information about exciting developments in the eye care industry.

The office of Sandra Akamine Davidson is a full-service, seven staff-member facility located in Riverside, California. Dr. Davidson’s offers complete eye care including eye examinations, LASIK consultations, retina photography and low vision evaluations. The latest in lenses and frames are offered, including the popular Transitions lenses and high-end frame designs such as Prada, Dolce & Gabbana, and Ray-Ban. For more information, check out our website.