At Southwest Virginia Eye Center we now hav the latest laser from Ellex with the capability of vaporizing vitreous floaters and membranes. Until now, this had to be treated by surgery in an operating room with increased risks for infection and cataract formation, now for the majority of floaters, a simple in-office laser procedure with minimal risks is available.
Dr. Till has now performed the first femtosecond laser cataract surgery in the Roanoke area. The laser makes for much more exact, controlled, and precise incisions as well as softening the cataract and performing several of the more demanding tasks associated with cataract surgery. This is likely the next big technology movement in a long line of previous advances. Now the operation can be performed without any sharp hand held instruments or blades.
We have just added a new advanced eye analyzer to help us better decide who is the best candidate for the ever increasing array of advanced technology lens implants now available. This device is able to image the entire eye and generate numeric and photgraphic data, which can help determine if you are the right person for the lens you are thinking of having placed in your eye after cataract surgery.
At Southwest Virginia Eye Center we have new technologies to determine how severe your dry eye may be and new treatments to greatly improve the condition.
Dysfunctional Tear Syndromeis the new term for dry eye syndrome and other tear related problems. This is a very common and frequently under diagnosed condition that affects millions of people, especially those over age 50. There are many new treatments and diagnostic techniques now available to help with this disabling condition. Measuring the salt concentration in your tears is one of the most accurate ways of determining how severe evaporative dry disease may be. We also have technology to measure surface inflammation, a new imaging device that measures lipid layer, tear height, tear breakup time, and even images the meibomian glands to determine the extent of your damage.
Normal tears are a complex mixture of water, salts, oils, proteins, and mucous. Patients with Dysfunctional Tear Syndrome have lost the balanced of the components of their tears and then symptoms of dryness, foreign body, burning, and excessive tearing occur. There is no available true artificial tear substitute available today. Many have portions of the components of natural tears, but all are still very lacking. Medications such as Restasis, Xiidra, topical steroids, and blood plasma fortified artificial tears are all much better treatments for dysfunctional tear syndrome than over-the-counter drops. These as well as other treatments including insertion of punctual plugs, avoiding fans, and adding a humidifier to your bedroom can all help. At Southwest Virginia Eye Center, we will determine just which treatments are best for you.
If you think you have a problem with dry eyes or dysfunctional tear syndrome, please take this test known as the Ocular Surface Disease Index (OSDI) and it will help us to better treat you.
There may be a lot more to glaucoma management than just eye pressure and using drops.
Another related aspect to the condition may be the flow of blood to the nerve cells in the eye. This is related to the blood pressure and the heart rate as well as the oxygen saturation of the blood. Micronutrients also have a role in the health of the nerve cells. Sleep apnea has been known to negatively impact glaucoma. Taking blood pressure lowering medications before bedtime may be detrimental to the health of the nerve cells. A recently published article showed that most currently in use blood pressure lowering medications can cause glaucoma to worsen. Obviously, we do not want patients to stop their blood pressure lowering medications, but we also may not need to achieve the very low levels previously thought to be desirable. As is frequently the case, a balance between the glaucoma and blood pressure needs to be found for each patient.
New micro-invasive glaucoma devices (MIGs) are now becoming available and will and are making treatment easier and safer. There are currently two FDA approved implantable devices the iStent and more recently the CyPass. Each of these is currently approved to be used at the time of cataract surgery only.