Monthly Archives: June 2018

Corneal Transplants; What Are They

Penetrating Keratoplasty (PK)
This type of cornea transplant replaces the full thickness of the cornea with a healthy and clear donor tissue and is required when a cornea has been severely damaged or disease, and where no other option of surgery remains. PK can be carried out under local or general anaesthetic and takes about one to two hours to complete. During surgery, a central 8mm button of cornea is removed and a similar sized button of the donor cornea is stitched in with tiny stitches. After surgery vision will stay misty and/or cloudy for a few days and will improve gradually for about 12-18 months. Individual stitches may be removed from three months after the surgery, but complete stitch removal is not performed until at least one year after the surgery. Following surgery, and once fully healed, around 75% of transplant recipients have adequate vision to drive legally, but to get the best results from vision, glasses or contact lenses may need to be worn.

Deep Anterior Lamellar Keratoplasty (DALK)
This type of cornea transplant is a partial thickness transplant and replaces the front 99% of the cornea with a donor cornea. Unlike penetrating keratoplasty, DALK keeps the back layers of the cornea, the Descemet’s membrane and endothelium layer, in place and it is used as an alternative to PK, when these back layers of the cornea are healthy. The surgery itself is carried out much the same as PK, but just less donor cornea is used. Again, stiches are used to keep the donor tissue in place, but as only part of the cornea has been replaced, healing and visual recovery are usually quicker than what are seen with PK. To get the best vision following surgery, glasses or contact lenses may need to be worn.

Endothelial Keratoplasty (EK)
This type of cornea transplant is a partial thickness transplant and replaces only the back layers of the cornea. Unlike to above two transplants, EK can be further split into two methods; Descemet’s stripping endothelial keratoplasty (DSEK) and Descemet’s membrane endothelial Keratoplasty (DMEK). Both DSEK and DMEK are very similar and the procedure to carry them out is the same, but DMEK differs as the donor cornea tissue does not include any stromal layer tissue. The consultant ophthalmic surgeon will decide which surgery is necessary, depending on the damage or disease that is present. EK transplants are used when there is a problem at the back of the cornea. To help keep the cornea clear, the cells lining the inside of the cornea pump fluid to stop the cornea from swelling, if there are not enough cells, due to disease or damage, then the cornea starts to swell and vision will become cloudy. The surgery is carried out differently when compared to PK and DALK; it will again be under either local or general anaesthetic but a very small incision is made between the coloured and white part of the eye. The eye surgeon removes the dysfunctional endothelial cells through this opening and a disc of donor cells is placed back inside the eye. The donor endothelial cells are pressed to the back of the cornea with an air bubble and the patient will need to lie still for about 1 hour following surgery to make sure the air bubble stays in place. Occasionally, a few stitches to close the incision may be needed. Vision will stay misty or cloudy for a few days, and will get better over 3-4 months, as with all types of corneal transplants glasses or contact lenses may be needed after surgery to get the best results from vision

Winter Eye Problems

During winter, the weather is colder and windier and this can really dry the eyes, but also when you try to warm up by using heat, such as a blower heater or central heating, this can also dry out the eyes. Some easy tips to help combat this problem is to use artificial tear drops to keep your eyes hydrated throughout the day, drinking plenty of water, and even warm soup, will keep your body and eyes hydrated. Also try to avoid direct heat, especially heat that is blowing directly in your face, like car heaters for example, try to direct the airflow away from your face. If it is a windy day you can use glasses or goggles to help protect your eyes from the wind directly drying out your eyes. If you already suffer from dry eyes it is always a good idea to speak to your ophthalmologist if you are struggling in the winter months, as they will advise what else you can do to keep on top of your dry eyes during winter.

Tearing Eyes

Apart from winter weather drying out your eyes, the cold weather can also make your eyes over produce tears which can be very annoying and can make vision blurry. The best thing to help with this is to wear glasses, goggles, or sunglasses when outside to avoid the wind causing watery eyes. Also, if you are wiping your eyes to get rid of the tears make sure you use clean tissues or cloths to avoid infection. Excessive tearing eyes can also be caused by other factors such as infection, blocked tear duct, or surprisingly dry eyes, so if you are concerned make an appointment with your eye clinic or opticians so they can check it out.

Tired Eyes

The winter months are darker and natural light is less which can make certain tasks more difficult, reading and writing for example. Straining your eyes to see in lower light can cause eyestrain making your eyes feel tired quicker than usual. To help avoid this try having a lamp on when carrying out close work and if you require glasses to see well, make sure you wear them to avoid overstraining your eyes.

Light Sensitive Eyes

The sun tends to be lower in the sky during winter and this can cause difficulty seeing, especially when driving, light sensitivity, and damage caused by UV rays. Try to make a habit of not only wearing sunglasses in the summer, but also the winter. If you drive, keep a spare pair of sunglasses in your car so you are always prepared for the low, bright sun. Sunglasses also protect your eyes from the sun’s harmful UV rays which can contribute to many eye issues, such as cataracts. Make sure your sunglasses are 100% UVA and UVB protected.

Red Eyes

Red eyes can be a sign of many things, such as tiredness, dryness, blurry vision, over tearing, infection, and inflammation. Winter weather can cause eye redness due to many of these factors but also it can be caused from the sunlight either directly or from being reflected on snow for example. This can lead to inflammation of the cornea causing the red eyes, therefore this is another reason why wearing sunglasses or snow goggles is so important in winter.

Glaucoma, Symptoms, Diagnosis And Treatment For It

Glaucoma is a condition that affects the optic nerve in the eye. The optic nerve is majorly responsible for vision and transmits images to the brain. The cause for Glaucoma is an increased pressure inside the eye, also known as intraocular pressure. This force of pressure in the eye leads to the damage of the optic nerve.

Glaucoma can be hereditary in nature and may show up in the later stages of life. Poor blood flow to the optic nerve also causes Glaucoma. Without proper treatment, Glaucoma can cause permanent vision loss.

What are the symptoms for Glaucoma?

If you’re over 40 years of age and have a family history of Glaucoma, it is highly recommended to get a complete eye examination done from a Glaucoma specialist every 1 to 2 years. If diabetes or a history of glaucoma is prevalent in the family, a person may be more prone to eye disorders and diseases and may require frequent eye check-ups.

People who suffer from poor eye vision or are suffering from diabetes are also at the risk of getting Glaucoma. People who have suffered accidental injury or trauma on their eyes or are on steroids are equally at the risk of getting Glaucoma.

Glaucoma is considered to be difficult to be understood by the patient himself and difficult to diagnose as well at an early stage. Other symptoms for Glaucoma include-

Pain in the eyes, severe headaches, blurred vision or the appearance of halos around lights, redness in the eyes, hazy eyes, nausea or vomiting and narrowed vision or tunnel vision are some symptoms which must not be ignored.

Address all your eye problems carefully with a Glaucoma specialist to ensure a perfect vision.

How common is Glaucoma?

Glaucoma is the second leading cause of permanent blindness in the world today. Studies reveal thatapproximately6 million people suffer from blindness due to this disease.

What is more adverse is that Glaucoma is initially difficult to diagnose. This is because the disease causes no symptoms other than the first sign that is a gradual loss of side vision (which is the peripheral vision) and also it is difficult to understand. Due to its difficult diagnosing, Glaucoma is also known as �sneak thief of vision’.

How is Glaucoma diagnosed?

The Glaucoma specialist to provide you Glaucoma treatment will use eye drops to dilate your pupils and examine them carefully. Scans and pictures are also taken by eye specialists to observe the eye conditions over a period of time. Tests such as Tonometry are conducted to check the eye pressure. Visual field tests and examination help the eye doctor to diagnose Glaucoma

Eye Conditions That Require Skill Ofan Eye Care Hospital

Eyes are the windows for any human being to the beautiful world. It is one of the most sensitive creations of nature and must be dealt with utmost care and compassion. Maintaining optimum vision should be the main priority of a human being. Proper attention should be devoted to the condition of the eyes and any diversion from the normal state should be brought to immediate notice of a certified specialist. The utmost importance of regular check up cannot be underestimated. It will ensure that your prescription stays updated, closely following the prevalent condition of the eyes. There are some conditions that normally do not show any early signs or symptoms, when they are in their initial stages. Only a routine checkup can rule out the probability of such a condition and help to avoid aggravation of the condition.

Routine eye checkup becomes mandatory once a person crosses 40 years of age, for preserving the eye-sight and maintaining it. There are many common symptoms that can be noticed in ageing adults which require expertise of some specialist in some good eye-care hospital to detect the problem on time. Some of these symptoms include difficulty in seeing objects that are at a closer distance or smaller prints, presence of tiny spots or specks that hover across the vision, entire area near the eye covered with cloudy areas, dryness, night blindness, redness, tearing, burning and itching. Apart from such problems, there can be eyelid problems as well, that include drooping of eyelids, inflamed eyelids, involuntary blinking and so on.

Headache can be also regarded as a symptom of eye problems and if it is not medicated on time then it can result in weakening of the eyes. Eye problems are also prevalent in children and the most common being astigmatism. Usually astigmatism goes undetected, which can cause further complications. Children can experience difficulty in reading or doing intricate work, squinting, frequent blinking and so on.

On some unfortunate events, Eye injuries could occur, which could cause unexpected loss of normal vision. They can include pain, flashing lights or loss of sight. Such situations can be regarded as medical emergencies and must be brought to the notice of a dedicated surgeon in some hospital who is capable of handling such traumatic situations and provide required aid on time with the help of skilled doctors and advanced technology.

How To Prepare For Cataract Surgery

1) Glasses
If you are having both eyes treated it is likely both eyes with be done on separate days, roughly 1 week apart. This means once the first eye is treated, you will have a good eye and a bad eye, so you may struggle with your vision in this time. The best thing to do if you do find this difficult, is to ask your optician to remove the lens in your glasses for the eye that has been treated, they can leave it empty or they may be able to put in a prescription free lens.
You can also wear a contact lens in the untreated eye to help, but remember depending on the type of contact lenses you wear, these must be left out for a certain time before surgery, this can vary from 24 hours to 2-3 weeks, so it may be best to arrange for some glasses to have on standby.
2) Cleaning Your Eyes
You won’t be able to get water in your eyes for about 2 weeks following the surgeries, this is to avoid getting an infection. You may find your eyes get sticky from the prescribed drops you will be using after surgery, so you might want to clean your eyes. It is a good idea to buy what you need to do this before you have the surgery. You will need a clean bowl, cooled boiled water and some gauze. Boil the water and pour it into the clean bowl and let it cool. Once cooled you can soak the gauze in the water, ring it out and very gently wipe over the eyes and eyelashes, being very careful not to push on the eyes or drag the skin.
3) Eating
Most patients will be awake during cataract surgery and will have local anaesthetic to numb the eye, therefore it is advised to eat a good meal and keep well hydrated before you come to the clinic/hospital for surgery. If you are going to be put to sleep using general anaesthetic or be sedated, then you will not be able to eat or drink before surgery, this can vary from 6-12 hours beforehand. Your eye clinic should advise you on eating prior to surgery, but also ask them to confirm this if you are unsure or have not been advised.
4) Transport Home
After surgery, you will not be able to drive yourself home so you must arrange for someone to collect you, whether this be a family member or friend or a taxi. Ideally it wouldn’t be recommended you take public transport as you may struggle getting around on this. Also, you may not be able to drive for several days after the surgeries, so it is always best to have someone that can drive you around or it’s a good excuse to put your feet up and rest.
5) Sunglasses
So, it may not be a sunny day when you have surgery and it may even be night time when you leave the clinic/hospital, but we would recommend you bring a pair of sunglasses. Even though it is likely that your eye that has been treated on will be covered, either by gauze or a plastic shield, you may find lights brighter than normal, such as the sun, car lights and street lights. Also, the sunglasses act as another shield to protect your eyes from dust, wind or any other debris that could get in your eyes which could potentially cause an infection.
6) Time Off Work
If you work, you will need to prepare taking some time off after the surgeries. This can depend on the type of job you do but can vary from 2 days to 1 week after each eye has been treated. When you return to work, you may need to take extra caution depending on your environment, for example if you work in a dusty atmosphere you will need to wear protective goggles for several weeks to protect your eyes. Speak to your ophthalmologist about the type of work you do and they will give the best advice on returning to work.
All of the above is only a guide and your eye doctor may give different advice to you as every patient and surgery is different and recommendations will be tailored to suit your surgery, lifestyle, and needs. Remember if you have any questions about preparing for surgery, contact your eye clinic/hospital before the day of the surgery.

5 Benefits Of Lutein Supplements For Eye Health

What is Lutein? Don’t we have natural lutein in our body? How can lutein aid in making our eyes healthy? What benefits it can give to us. Are supplements for the eyes healthy?
Medical history provides that people with high blood sugars often have poor eye sight. One of the food supplement that can aid eye health is by taking and using lutein. The study has shown that people having poor eye sight should take the desired amount or lutein. What is the medical term of Lutein? Lutein is called a carotenoid vitamin. It is a vitamin that can help your vision more healthy and enable you to have a 20/20 vision. Further, it is also a xanthophyll and one of 600 known naturally occurring carotenoids and it is synthesized only by plants. In addition, lutein is even referred to as �the eye vitamin�.
Lutein is the eye supplement and eye food. Thus, it has been noted that foods that are rich in lutein are squash, orange juice, kale, spinach, kiwi fruits, grapes zucchini and broccoli. This must be taken into consideration in order for the people with poor eye sight to be more cautious. It is best absorbed in the body when it is taken with a high-fat meal.
History has been told that, when people begin to age, the level of lutein within the body will normally decrease because of lower in production inside the body. The level of lutein typically is lower to those people who smoke and to women who are in their postmenopausal stage of life.
Thus, a lower amount of lutein in the body would trigger the poor quality of your eye sight. Luckily, nowadays, people can easily fill up the amount of lutein in the body through some nutritional supplements. There are loads of lutein supplements in the market. The only questions are which of them offers the best quality.
These supplements had been proven that it has incredibly prevented eye-related health issues such as cataract and dry eye syndrome. Research also found that by taking 15 to 40 mg of lutein daily can give protection for most eye health issues of some people. Lutein can function as a light filter which protects the eye tissues from direct sunlight damage.
Benefits of Lutein in regards to eye health are wide-ranging and can help to reduce fatigue in the eye itself.
But does Lutein only used for the health of one’s eye? Or are there any benefits that lutein has that can be benefited by other systems of the body?
1.)Lutein is not only good for the eye health because studies show that people who take lutein can maintain positive heart health.
2.)Lutein also lowers the risk of diabetes.
3.)Lutein can also reduce the risk of cancer because it reduces the inflammation and oxidative stress.
4.)Some studies have been found that Lutein is able to support the function of the brain and enhance the status of the abilities of your memory.
5.)Some people take Lutein for the prevention of colon cancer, breast cancer, type 2 diabetes and heart diseases.

Computer Eye Strain & Meibomian Gland Dysfunction

Computer eye strain is caused when you overuse your eyes and they become fatigued. Eye strain can occur when looking at a computer screen, or other device, for too long. Normally resting your eyes can help relieve the symptoms of computer eye strain. Symptoms of computer eye strain can include; headaches, difficulty focusing, dry eyes, watery eyes, eye discomfort, blurred vision, itchy eyes, and tired eyes.

Computer Eye Strain; How Does It Cause Meibomian Gland Dysfunction?

The meibomian glands are the tiny glands on the lower and upper eye lid margins that secrete oil, which when we blink, protection the surface of the eye. This oil helps keep the water element of your tears from drying out too quickly. Meibomian gland dysfunction (MGD) is a very common type of dry eye disease where the meibomian glands do not secrete enough oil or the quality of the oil is not good. Normally in MGD the glands get blocked and very little oil, if any, can get out and this causes the eye symptoms. Computer eye strain can cause MGD due to a reduction in blinking. Most people when using a computer or similar device do not blink as often as they should, this can be up to 60% less blinking than when not looking at a computer. If your blink rate is reduced, the oils will not be secreted as often which means the watery element in your tears evaporates quicker, drying out your eyes. Overtime this can cause the glands to block leading to meibomian gland dysfunction.

Treatment for Meibomian Gland Dysfunction

There are many different types of treatment that can help MGD sufferers and what suits one person may not suit another. If MGD has been linked to computer eye strain, then looking at the way you use a computer is a good place to start. Trying to reduce the time in front of a computer can be difficult, especially if you use a computer for work, but remembering to blink and keeping hydrated will help. Also try to follow the 20-20-20 rule; every 20 minutes’ look 20 feet away from your screen for 20 seconds. MGD sufferers will likely need to combine this with other at home’ treatments, such as heated eye masks, eye lid massaging, artificial tear drops, taking omega 3 supplements, and possibly taking other medication. There are other treatments that can be offered with an ophthalmologist or eye clinic that have great results in helping with MGD when used in conjunction with the at home’ treatments;

E-Eye Intense Regulated Pulsed Light (IRPL) The E-Eye device creates polychromatic pulsed light using the new IRPL (intense regulated pulsed light) technology. The E-Eye releases a flash of light that is made up of a pulse train, which is flashed on the treatment area (cheekbone and temple area around the eye). Within this treatment area nerve branches are located and these nerve branches are connected to meibomian gland nerves. When these nerve branches are flashed with the E-Eye (IRPL) it causes a stimulatory response within the meibomian glands and they start to resume secretion of the normal oil layer again and symptoms of eye dryness will disappear. Accordingly, it will be effective in 80% of patients affected by dry eye disease. From a single flash of IRPL it is possible to produce sub-flashes of varying intensities, this offers unparalleled therapeutic potentials, especially with the treatment of MGD, which is impossible with conventional IPL. The E-Eye emits a cold light’ and it is non-invasive, totally painless, and entirely harmless to the eyeball.