Retinal Disease in Chicago
What is the Retina?
The retina is a tissue that covers the back of the eye. This tissue is sensitive to light and is the key tissue that translates the light that enters your eye into the vision you perceive through the brain. If you think of your eye as a traditional film camera, the cornea in the front acts as the lens, and the retina acts as the film.
What is the Vitreous?
The eye is a very sensitive organ that has a large portion of it exposed to outside elements. The vitreous is the gel-like substance that fills the eye cavity, which keeps the eye supplied with nutrients and is responsible for clarity of vision.
The retina and vitreous are closely connected to each other in their operations within the eye. As a result, when one has developed a problem or condition, the other typically will also be affected. Some vitreo-retinal diseases that eye doctors commonly observe are; diabetic retinopathy, macular degeneration (link), retinal detachments or tears, macular holes, retinopathy of prematurity, retinoblastoma, uveitis, eye cancer, flashes and floaters and retinitis pigmentosa.
The leading cause of blindness among young and middle-aged adults in America, this disease affects people who have developed diabetes. Ophthalmologists and researchers have found that the longer one has diabetes, the higher they are at risk of diabetic retinopathy.
Most patients with diabetic retinopathy don’t show strong symptoms and maintain normal vision. Visible floaters and loss of vision can be a sign of diabetic retinopathy though.
Eye doctors can detect diabetic retinopathy fairly accurately during a dilated eye exam. Treatment includes maintaining glucose levels and normal blood pressure in the early stages. If the disease has developed to later stages, eye drops, eye injections, and/or laser eye surgery may be options for treatment.
If you have diabetes or suspect that you may have diabetic retinopathy, please make an appointment for an eye exam with our ophthalmologists today. You can fill out the form beside or call the Chicago Harlem office at (773 777 4444).
A Macular Hole
A macular hole is a hole in the macula, which is a part of the retina in the back of the eye. The existence of a macular hole can cause blurry vision and/or a loss of central vision. Eye doctors can diagnose a macular hole with a dilated retina exam, and then further tests can provide information as to the severity of the hold.
Macular holes are typically treated with membrane stripping and gas injections in the eye. This treatment has a 90% success rate, and thus is very successful for patients with macular holes.
Retinal Tears and Detachments
A retinal tear is a rip in the tissue that covers the back of the eye. If the fluids within the eye can go behind the retina, they will cause the tissue to detach from the eye wall. This will cause significant loss of vision and/or blindness if left untreated.
Symptoms of a retinal tear and detachment include floaters and flashes of light, accompanied by a loss of vision that looks like a dark curtain.
Treatment includes surgery that will use a band around the eye to hold the retinal tissue in place, or pneumatic retinopexy, which can be performed by a retina specialist in their office.
If you suspect you have retinal tears or detachments please schedule an appointment with the form beside or call our Chicago office at (773-777-4444) today.
Macular Degeneration (AMD)
Macular degeneration is a condition that typically affects patients aged in their 60’s and above. The disease can cause a complete loss of central vision and significantly affect one’s ability to complete normal daily activities. Symptoms are usually light at first, and it is highly recommended to regularly see an eye doctor if you are over the age of 60 and/or have a history of the disease in your family. Please click the link above to see more about the condition on our macular degeneration page.
If you suspect you have an eye condition, or haven’t had an eye exam for a prolonged period of time, please schedule an appointment at the Chicago Harlem office with the form beside or call us at (773-777-4444).