Know the Symptoms of Retinal Detachment

Do you see the light? You can thank your eyes’ retina for it. The retina is responsible for converting light from the outside world allowing us to see the world around us. Should the retina be lifted or pulled from its normal position, a retinal detachment will occur that can cause permanent vision loss if left untreated. At the office of Retina Group of Washington – Maryland – Silver Spring our team of skilled professionals is trained in the diagnosis and treatment of retinal detachment.

There’s no pain associated with retinal detachment, but there are usually symptoms before your retina becomes detached. Primary symptoms include:
• blurred vision
• partial vision loss, which makes it seem as if a curtain has been pulled across your field of vision, with a dark shadowing effect
• flashes of light that appear when looking to the side
• suddenly seeing many floaters, which are small bits of debris that appear as black flecks or strings floating before your eye

Although retinal detachment can occur at any age, it is more common in people over age 40, affecting more men than women. The condition is more likely to occur in people who are very nearsighted, have had a retinal detachment in the past, have had eye injuries or other eye diseases or disorders.

In most cases, surgery is necessary to repair a detached retina. We may use laser therapy or a freezing technique, both of which are designed to scar the tear site to restore proper retinal placement and hold it in place. For minor detachments or tears of the retina, a simple procedure may be done in our office.

Optimal vision is our top priority

If you are experiencing symptoms, contact us immediately. Regular eye exams can also flag early changes in your eyes that can prevent future problems. At the office of Retina Group of Washington – Maryland – Silver Spring, we’re dedicated to providing the highest quality of skilled and compassionate eye care. For more information on our office and the many services that we provide, give us a call today.

Regular Eye Exams can Help Maintain Good Vision

The eyes are an essential part of our bodies, allowing us to see the world around us. It’s also the only part of the human body where a doctor can easily see a part of the central nervous system, the optic nerve and retina. That observation plays a crucial part of a comprehensive eye examination.

At the office of Retina Group of Washington – Maryland – Silver Spring, our skilled professionals provide the highest quality eye examinations in a relaxed, comfortable setting. Regular eye exams are important in determining such things as common eye diseases, whether you need glasses or contacts, and the general health of your eyes.

Comprehensive eye examinations involve tests your vision using an eye chart, and whether you need glasses or a change of prescription strength. They also involve dilation of the pupils of your eyes to increase their size. This allows us to see and evaluate the health of both the optic nerve and retina — critical to preventing and treating eye conditions that could potentially lead to vision loss.

Dilation helps us to detect a host of potentially serious eye diseases including age-related macular degeneration (when the eye’s macula begins to break down causing blind spots in your central vision), diabetic retinopathy (when uncontrolled blood sugar levels damage the blood vessels of the retina); and retinal vein occlusion (a blockage of blood flow in one of the retinal veins) to name a few. Regular dilated eye exams play a key role in early detection of disease, making treatment more effective.

We make your vision our top priority

At the office of Retina Group of Washington – Maryland – Silver Spring, we’re dedicated to providing the highest quality of skilled eye care. For more information on our office and the many services we provide, give us a call today.

What is Central Serous Chorioretinopathy?

There are many things that can go wrong with the eye – affecting your ability to see clearly. One of those conditions is called central serous chorioretinopathy (CSC), which results in the sudden onset of blurred or distorted vision — usually in only one eye — that is accompanied by a blind spot in the center of the visual field.

At the offices of Retina Group of Washington – Maryland – Silver Spring, our team of highly-skilled eye professionals is well equipped to diagnose and treat CSC, helping to manage the condition and to recover healthy vision for our patients.

Central serous retinopathy happens when fluid builds up behind the retina in the eye, causing sudden or gradual vision loss. While blurry central vision in one eye is the most common symptom, others include reduced night vision, reduced ability to distinguish between colors and an impaired ability to discern fine detail – like reading and recognizing faces.

CSC usually resolves on its own within a few weeks to months. For chronic sufferers, the condition can lead to long-term vision difficulties, requiring medical treatments. Early detection of CSC is very helpful, and most eyes with CSC can be treated successfully with laser therapy, oral medications and/or ocular injections to avoid permanent vision loss.

Your healthy vision is our top priority

You should always report any changes in your vision to your eye doctor especially if you experience any loss of vision or sudden changes. At the office of Retina Group of Washington – Maryland – Silver Spring, we’re dedicated to providing the highest quality of skilled retinal eye care. For more information on our office and the many services we provide, give us a call today.

Retina surgeon in Bethesda

Lasers Prove Effective in Treating some Retinal Conditions

Retinal diseases vary widely, but most of them cause visual symptoms and can affect any part of the eye. At the office of Retina Group of Washington – Maryland – Silver Spring, our team of highly-skilled eye specialists are well equipped to diagnose and treat conditions of the retina, helping to restore or maintain healthy vision for our patients.

Many retinal diseases share some common signs and symptoms, such as seeing “floaters,” “cobwebs” or flashes of light in your field of vision, or having blurry, distorted or even or reduced vision. All of these are warning signs that need prompt medical attention.

We can treat some common retinal conditions with a non-invasive procedure known as laser photocoagulation — where the heat of the laser works to seal the tear or destroy actively growing abnormal blood cells. The procedure can be successfully used on patients suffering from age-related macular degeneration (where the center of the retina begins to deteriorate); diabetic retinopathy (retinal damage as a result of diabetes); retinal vein occlusion (blockage of the small veins that carry blood away from the retina); retinal detachments (at the back of the eye pulls away from the layer of blood vessels that provides it with oxygen and nutrients) and certain other conditions.

After this relatively painless procedure, the surgeon may administer a topical steroid to prevent inflammation. Bed rest is usually recommended for the first few days, giving time for the eye to fully heal.

Good vision is our top priority

The main goals of retinal treatment are to stop or slow disease progression and preserve, improve or restore your vision. At the office of Retina Group of Washington – Maryland – Silver Spring, we’re dedicated to providing the highest quality of skilled and compassionate eye care. For more information on our office and the many services we provide, give us a call today.

Coping with the Challenges of Low Vision

Eyesight is something most of us take for granted – until something happens to compromise it. When low vision sets in, everyday tasks like reading, shopping, cooking, writing, and watching TV suddenly become harder to do. Low vision is a common affliction, primarily for those over the age of 65.

As providers of experienced and compassionate care, the team of professionals at Retina Group of Washington – Maryland – Silver Spring understand how frustrating your condition can be. We’ll work to diagnose any underlying eye disease that may be contributing to your condition, and help you meet the challenges that low vision presents — such as recognizing the faces of family and friends, doing housework, reading traffic signs, or seeing clearly even with the lights on.

Low vision is usually caused by such eye conditions as age-related macular degeneration (AMD), cataract, diabetic retinopathy, glaucoma, eye injuries and birth defects. Regardless of the cause, lost vision cannot be restored, but it can be managed with proper treatment and vision rehabilitation.

The sooner vision loss or eye disease is detected, the greater your chances of keeping your remaining vision. If conventional methods such as glasses, contact lenses, medications or surgery have not worked, we will often recommend vision rehabilitation. These services may include eye examinations, a low vision evaluation, training on how to use visual and adaptive devices, support groups, and training on how to perform everyday activities in new ways. Our goal is to help you maintain as independent and as good a quality of life as possible.

A trusted partner in care

At the office of Retina Group of Washington – Maryland – Silver Spring, we’re dedicated to providing the highest quality of skilled care for a wide spectrum of eye disorders and conditions. For more information on our office and the many services we provide, give us a call today.

Retinal Detachment is a Medical Emergency

Do you see the light? You can thank your eyes’ retina for it. The retina is responsible for converting light from the outside world allowing us to see the world around us. Should the retina be lifted or pulled from its normal position, a retinal detachment will occur that can cause permanent vision loss if left untreated. At the office of Retina Group of Washington – Maryland – Silver Spring our team of skilled professionals is trained in the diagnosis and treatment of retinal detachment.

In some cases there may only be small areas of the retina that are torn – a precursor of possible retinal detachment. Symptoms include a sudden or gradual increase in either the number of floaters (little “cobwebs” or specks that float about in your field of vision), light flashes in the eye, and a darkening of peripheral vision.

Are you at risk?

Although retinal detachment can occur at any age, it is more common in people over age 40, affecting more men than women. The condition is more likely to occur in people who:
• are extremely nearsighted
• have had a retinal detachment in the other eye
• have a family history of retinal detachment
• have had cataract surgery
• have other eye diseases or disorders
• have had eye injury

The good news is that various techniques are available to treat retinal tears and detachments ranging from laser therapy, freezing, or surgery. Depending on your particular case, we will recommend the best treatment option for you.

Optimal vision is our top priority

If you are experiencing symptoms, contact us immediately. Regular eye exams can also flag early changes in your eyes that can prevent future problems. At the office of Retina Group of Washington – Maryland – Silver Spring, we’re dedicated to providing the highest quality of skilled and compassionate eye care. For more information on our office and the many services that we provide, give us a call today.

ForeseeHome™ Allows for Earlier Intervention and Treatment for Patients with AMD

You may have heard of age-related macular degeneration (AMD), where damage occurs to the light sensing cells of the macula, the small area at the center of the eye’s retina responsible for most of our central vision. But you may not be aware that there are two types of AMD: dry, and the more serious wet form. The progression from dry to wet can occur rapidly and lead to severe vision loss if left undiagnosed and untreated.

Advanced technologies being used today allow for greater monitoring for people at risk for wet AMD. At the office of Retina Group of Washington – Maryland – Silver Spring, our team of highly-skilled eye professionals will introduce you to the ForeseeHome™ home monitoring device — a clinically proven method to identify even the smallest changes in your vision.

ForeseeHome® allows us to detect signs of AMD progression earlier, and help preserve vision in patients at risk by beginning prompt treatment. When used daily, the ForeseeHome Monitor can identify vision changes even before the patient notices them, giving us the ability to review test results consistently and address any problems quickly.

ForeseeHome: how it works:

  • the patient takes a daily test, about three minutes per eye
  • the patient’s daily test results are automatically set to a ForeseeHome Data Monitoring Center
  • the ForeseeHome Data Monitoring Center provides our office with timely alerts to vision changes so that a follow-up appointment can be scheduled

Earlier detection, earlier treatment, better visual outcomes

At the office of Retina Group of Washington – Maryland – Silver Spring, we’re dedicated to providing the highest quality of skilled and compassionate eye care. For more information on our office and the many services that we provide, give us a call today.

retina exam

Sudden Accidents May Put Your Vision At Risk

Let’s say you were hit in the eye playing softball and now you’re having trouble seeing. Maybe you fell down a flight of stairs and things look blurry. In life, accidents happen and when it comes to injury, your eyes are just at risk as any other part of your body. If you had an accident and are having trouble with your eyesight, it may be time to see a retina specialist. At the office of Retina Group of Washington – Maryland – Silver Spring, our skilled team of professionals is highly trained in the diagnosis and treatment of a wide range of retinal disorders.

The retina is one of the most important structures of the eye, the thin tissue that lines the inside back wall of the eye, collecting all the light that enters it and turns it into electrical signals that are returned to the brain, creating visual images. Sudden impacts can affect this process and certain conditions may arise including ocular trauma, traumatic retinal detachment, and choroidal rupture.

A closer look:

Eye trauma: Damage caused by a direct blow to the eye. The trauma may affect not only the eye, but the surrounding area including adjacent tissue and bone structure. There are many different forms of trauma, varying in severity from minor injury to medical emergencies.

Traumatic retinal detachment: The retina be lifted or pulled from its normal position, a retinal detachment will occur that can cause permanent vision loss if left untreated.

Choroidal ruptures: A splitting or break in the choroid in the back of the eye, caused by trauma or injury.

The good news is that there are effective treatments available to treat these retinal conditions and others. The specialists at Retina Group of Washington – Maryland – Silver Spring ensure the health of the retina for people of all ages. We offer a complete retinal evaluation using the latest imaging equipment and are able to treat many conditions in the office. When surgery is needed, we use the most advanced retinal surgical technology.

Risk Factors for Floaters

Do you ever see spots in your line of vision? If so you may be experiencing floaters. At the office of Retina Group of Washington – Maryland – Silver Spring, we can help!

Sometimes described as dark shapes or spots, flecks, lines, or strings, floaters are small shadows that are often caused by age-related changes to the eye. These are a normal part of some people’s vision and may just be annoying, but not require treatment. However, if you don’t normally have floaters or if you start to see an increasing amount in your line of sight, it’s important to have your eyes checked.

Floaters can appear like small, dark shapes. They may move when you move your eyes, and dart around. Usually you’ll see these when it is bright out or while looking into the light. They are not commonly associated with any pain. But just because you don’t feel pain, doesn’t mean you should ignore these symptoms. While floaters can be harmless, they can also indicate a more serious problem. The only way to tell is to schedule an eye exam as soon as you notice anything unusual.

What Causes Floaters?

According to the Mayo Clinic, common causes include:
• Aging (those 50 and over are at an increased risk)
• Inflammation of the eye
• Bleeding in the eye
• Retinal tear
• Eye surgeries
• Eye medications

Be sure to tell your doctor if you are nearsighted, have had any previous eye trauma or eye surgery complications, have diabetes, or any eye inflammation. These are all risk factors for floaters. Remember, it’s important to report any changes in vision or eye-related concerns as soon as you notice them and to always have regular, annual eye exams.

At the office of Retina Group of Washington – Maryland – Silver Spring, we’re dedicated to providing the highest quality of skilled and compassionate care. For more information on our office and the many services that we provide, give us a call today.

7 Common Conditions Treated by Retina Specialists

You count on your eye doctor to keep you seeing clearly. In fact, eye doctors (ophthalmologists) perform a host of important functions — from eye exams, to prescribing medications, and doing eye surgery. But there are times when an eye problem requires even further specialized care. For these situations, a retina specialist is needed.

Retina specialists are experts in conditions of the retina (the layer of light-sensitive cells at the back of the eyeball that trigger nerve impulses that pass from the optic nerve to the brain) and the vitreous (the gel-like substance that helps the eye maintain its round shape). At the office of Retina Group of Washington – Maryland – Silver Spring, our skilled team of professionals will diagnose and treat a wide range of retinal and vitreous diseases using state-of-the-art equipment.

Conditions treated by retina specialists

  1. Retinal detachment: Tears occur when the vitreous pulls away from the retina. Liquid that passes through the tear and settles under the retina can separate the retina from the back wall of the eye, resulting in a retinal detachment.
  2. Diabetic retinopathy: A potentially blinding complication of diabetes that damages the retina. It occurs when tiny retinal blood vessels become damaged from diabetes and begin to leak fluid or blood, resulting in blurred vision.
  3. Age-related macular degeneration (AMD): One of the most common eye diseases treated by retina specialists. The condition is associated with aging, and it is the leading cause of blindness among people over the age of 50 in America. AMD gradually destroys sharp, central vision.
  4. Macular hole/pucker: Scar-like tissue can damage the tiny portion of the retina responsible for seeing fine details clearly.
  5. Retinal vein occlusion: A blockage of the small veins that carry blood away from the retina.
  6. Cancers of the eye: Although uncommon, cancers can affect the outer parts of the eye, such as the eyelid or the inside the eyeball.
  7. Severe eye trauma: Accidents that involve a puncture wound or foreign body being lodged in the eye run the risk of damaging the eye and/or vision.

Committed to maintaining good eye health

At the office of Retina Group of Washington – Maryland – Silver Spring, we’re dedicated to providing the highest quality of skilled and compassionate eye care. For more information on our office and the many services that we provide, give us a call today.