Foods Essential to Your Eye Health

July 21st, 2015

Summer is here and many of us are thinking of ways to stay fit through exercise and healthy eating. We can’t forget that we can improve our vision health by eating better and getting the right amount of vitamins daily as well. There are several foods we eat everyday that can improve your overall eye health.

Listed below are some foods and vitamins that are vital to your eye health:

There are several foods that can help you improve your vision by including them in your daily diet. In addition these foods can assist you in improving your bodies overall function. Take a few minutes to read the list and how they can help improve your vision.

Riboflavin – Vitamin B2

Riboflavin also known as Vitamin B2 provides benefits for your vision but also improves the production of other vitamins which benefit the rest of your body (Vitamin B3- Niacin & Vitamin B6 Pyridoxine). Riboflavin helps the body’s cells produce energy from our intake of protein, fats, and carbohydrates.

Foods with Riboflavin:

• Spinach
• Mushrooms
• Pasta (Egg noodles)
• Milk
• Cottage Cheese
• Pork
• Fish including (Trout, Squid, Salmon)
• Cuttlefish – Contains highest amount of Riboflavin – (1.3 mg per serving)

EFA – Essential Fatty Acids

Essential Fatty Acids are not just important to your eye health but your body’s overall health because the body doesn’t naturally produce them. Ensuring that they are a part of your diet regularly is important to your body.

There are two types of essential fatty acids:

Omega-3

Omega-3s are found in breast milk and are essential to our early development. Omega-3s also help protect vision from conditions like macular degeneration, and even Ery Eye syndrome. EFAs or essential fatty acids are also known to help drain intraocular fluid which can reduce the risk of high blood pressure and risk of Glaucoma.

Foods- (with Omega-3s)

• Tuna
• Herring
• Sardines
• Salmon

Recommended amounts would be 2 serving per week.

Omega-6

While Omega-6 can’t be produced by our bodies, it is in a lot of the foods we already eat regularly. In fact, most of us get too much Omega-6 so it is not often recommended to eat additional amounts with our daily diet. Of the EFAs, it is recommended that your focus be on Omega-3s.

To see a news segment about foods that are good for the eyes, as well as other helpful summer eye health tips, watch below.

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The Facts about Conductive Keratoplasty

July 14th, 2015

For those suffering from Keratoconus, an eye condition caused by the thinning of the cornea that results in distorted vision and sensitivity to light, finding relief is a top priority. Conductive keratoplasty is a non-invasive, non-laser surgery used to correct eyesight by adjusting the shape of the cornea. However, it is important for individuals to learn more about the procedure so that they are prepared for the road ahead as they seek treatment.

The procedure, also referred to as CK, is used to correct presbyopia, astigmatism, and low hyperopia, but it does not remove tissue from the eye like LASIK surgery. Anesthetic drops are used to numb your eye, and radio frequency energy is applied to the treatment area to adjust the cornea. Both of your eyes can be treated in one visit, and the procedure only takes a few minutes from start to finish. If you have Keratoconus or another eye condition, be sure to talk to your doctor about the benefits of conductive keratoplasty.

The Facts about Conductive Keratoplasty

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How Do I Treat My Dry Eyes?

July 7th, 2015

Have you been suffering from chronic Dry Eye? Maybe you spend a lot of time behind a computer at work, school, or even at home. If your dry eyes have been causing a problem, you’re probably wondering how you can treat them on your own. In some cases you can get temporary relief from Dry Eye symptoms over the counter, but in other cases a prescribed drop or procedure maybe needed.

Below are a few types of treatments for your chronic Dry Eye:

When you are first diagnosed with Dry Eye, your eye care professional will have you try different treatments, depending on the severity of your Dry Eye. Below are a few treatments you may encounter after diagnosis.

Over the counter drops:

These types of drops are found in your pharmacy and provide temporary relief for your dry eyes. They are helpful if you experience an occasional episode or two. If you have chronic Dry Eye it is likely you will have to continue using these drops multiple times a day, while also using other methods.

Prescribed Eye Drops or topical treatments:

If you continue to have difficulties with Dry Eye, your doctor may prescribe some drops for you to use regularly. These drops are often prescribed for those who have continued Dry Eye or have difficulty producing tears. If you have an issue with the lipid glands, topical creams or ointments may be suggested (such as testosterone cream). Prescribed eye drops and creams can often provide better relief than over the counter eye drops.

Lipiflow® Procedure:

For those who have difficulty with chronic Dry Eye related to a lipid deficiency, Lipiflow® may be a great treatment option for you. Lipiflow® is a painless 12-minute outpatient treatment that heats and massages the eye lids and glands that create the lipids. This action loosens and unclogs the glands, allowing lipid to be produced and excreted more effectively. While the procedure is relatively new, it has been extremely effective in providing relief for those who suffer from chronic Dry Eye that previously had no great treatment options.

Watch Jennifer, a Dry Eye sufferer for over 30 years, discuss how she finally found relief:

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Discovering Keratoconus: Symptoms & Treatments

June 23rd, 2015

For those with a family history of Keratoconus you probably already know the severity of the condition; however, if it has been a decade or two you might not be familiar with the newer, more advanced treatment options for Keratoconus.

In the past Keratoconus was mainly treated by using a corneal transplant. Often painful and with long recovery times and complications, they were a necessary but not convenient or desirable procedure. Over the past decades there have been many new treatments developed which cause little to no pain and provide much faster recovery times.

Signs & Symptoms of Keratoconus:

• Frequent Prescription changes
• Frequent eye rubbing
• Blurred vision
• Double vision
• Light sensitivity
• Halos around lights

Treatments for Keratoconus:

Keratoconus is a progressive condition that causes changes thinning and distortion of the cornea. Over time these changes cause distortions in the vision of the patient. There are several new treatments to strengthen and change the shape and of the cornea before the need for a corneal transplant. The treatment options have been extremely effective and reduced the need for corneal transplants to less than 5%.

Treatments:

Holcomb C3-R® Crosslinking System

Holcomb C3-R® is a non-invasive procedure that uses a Riboflavin solution activated by an ultraviolet light to strengthen the collagen fibers of the cornea. This helps to reduce glare and halos in the vision, while also stopping the progression of the Keratoconus.

The Holcomb C3-R® is a only a 30 minute treatment, however it continues to strengthen the cornea for up to 3-6 months after the treatment. Another great aspect is that it can also be performed in combination with other treatments to improve your results even further.

INTACS®

INTACS® are tiny crescent shaped inserts that are placed within the cornea to help change the shape of the cornea. INTACS® can also be used in combination with the Holcomb C3-R® to reduce distortions and increase comfort of glasses and contacts.
Conductive Keratoplasty (CK)

CK is a vision correction treatment that uses heat to change the shape of the cornea and reduce astigmatism. When combined with the Holcomb C3-R® Crosslinking System, the CK treatment can effectively reduce astigmatism for a period of several years. Due to the nature of the cornea in Keratoconus patients the effect of CK can diminish with time. Patients may elect to have future CK to reduce astigmatism, if needed.

Watch Brad, a resident in general surgery, talk about his Keratoconus treatments, click below.

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Cataract Treatment When You Have Keratoconus

June 16th, 2015

As we age, natural circumstances can lead to a decrease in our vision or cause other problems with our eyesight. While most people see an eye doctor to get prescription glasses or contact lenses to improve their vision, there has been little in the way of relief for those with Keratoconus. Keratoconus is a vision disorder that happens when the round cornea becomes thin and cone shaped. This condition prevents light that enters the eye from being focused properly, and it can alter vision.

In the past, the only treatment for Keratoconus sufferers was a painful and invasive corneal transplant, but over the last decade new technology has provided improved treatment options. If you have cataracts and Keratoconus, it is important to get the best care possible in order to protect your vision. Treatment options include:

  • Intraocular Lenses (IOLs) – IOLs substitute the eye’s natural lenses that are detached during cataract surgery.
  • Toric IOLs – For cataract patients with astigmatism, Toric IOLs have the potential to improve visual perception like never before.
  • Monofocal IOLs – Monofocal IOLs may have costs partially covered by insurance, and they help vision at night or in low-light settings.
  • Holcomb C3-R® Treatment – By applying a vitamin-rich solution and exposing the eyes to UV light, the cornea can be strengthened to stop the progression of Keratoconus.

Learn more about getting treatment for Keratoconus so you can improve your vision today.

CATARACT TREATMENT WHEN YOU HAVE KERATOCONUS

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Finding Relief with LipiFlow®

June 2nd, 2015

Dealing with Keratoconus is difficult enough, but dry eyes and Keratoconus is a double trouble. For those who have been struggling with chronic dry eyes, LipiFlow® maybe the answer. Most patients have tried the over the counter “Get the Red Out” drops or artificial tears, and while they do relieve the irritation and symptoms of Dry Eye it is usually just a temporary fix. LipiFlow® allows you to have more permanent relief from your Dry Eye condition. Most patients experience relief after the treatment within a week.

The Procedure

The LipiFlow® treatment takes less than 15 minutes and can be performed in the doctor’s office. Disposable activators are placed on the eye lids to warm and gently massage the Meibomian glands on the eyelids. This loosens and releases oils that were clogging the glands, allowing fresh, clean oils to be excreted in the tear layers and protect the eyes.

There are between 30-40 meibum glands located within the eyelids that release certain amounts of oil into the tear fluid to help lubricate the eyes and stop the tears from evaporating. Sometimes these glands get clogged causing Dry Eye. The purpose of the LipiFlow® treatment is to loosen the blockage in the glands and allow them to release the natural flow of oil again.

Determining if you are a Good Candidate for LipiFlow®

The doctor will look for a few things before determining if you’re a good candidate for the treatment. They will look at your medical history, how long you have experienced chronic Dry Eye, how severe your dry eyes have been, and how the dry eye affected your daily activities. They will also have to determine what type you have before suggesting this treatment.They will also check the number of meibum glands are affected or clogged in the eyelids. Before determining if you are a good candidate all these factors must be taken into account. Over 65% of patients with dry eyes simply lack the proper level of oils within their tear fluid.

Benefits of LipiFlow®

Those with chronic Dry Eye understand the benefits of even the slightest relief from chronic dry eyes. Those who have explored most treatments for Dry Eye who still have little relief would most likely benefit from the LipiFlow® treatment. Below are a few additional benefits to consider.

Benefits:

• Little to no pain or discomfort
• Noninvasive procedure
• Quick procedure with quick results
• Unclogs the glands for more natural flow of lipid
• Can drive self to and from appointment – no need for a driver!

Dorys didn’t know what the cause of her excessive tearing was, and it ended up being Dry Eye!
Watch Dorys explain about her story, and how she finally got relief :

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Vision Safety & Staying Active With Keratoconus

May 26th, 2015

For those who are looking to get active this summer , but struggle with Keratoconus on a daily basis, there are several things you can do to protect your vision from getting worse and a few to stay active.

Keratoconus is a progressive eye condition that changes the shape of your cornea from spherical to cone shaped. This change causes many distortions in your vision. Below are a few tips to help you protect your vision and stay active during the summer months.

Vision Tips & Safety:

Always Wear Sunglasses or Eye Protection When Outside:

This is very important to remember not just in the summer months but all year around. The sun has very harmful rays which not only damage the eyes but can make your eye conditions worse if not protected. Research is showing that UV can increase free radicals which can lead to the cornea collagen breaking down further. It is important to wear sunglass eye wear that covers the sides as well as the front, this will ensure the most protection to your eyes.

Limit the Amount of Time Spent in Direct Sunlight:

If you work outside this may not be a feasible option, however if you don’t have to be in direct sunlight taking breaks throughout the day is a wise option. Some sunlight 20-30 minutes a day provides you the required amount of daily vitamin D, some sunlight is essential to staying healthy but remembering “everything in moderation” is always best.

Pay Attention to your eyes:

This seems like a common sense thing, but we often over look our vision until something goes considerable wrong. If you are noticing that you are squinting more or your contacts are becoming more uncomfortable, make an appointment to see your eye care provider sooner rather than later. If you find your desire to participate in activities is declining due to uncertainty with your vision, make an appointment to see your eye doctor.

It is important to educate ourselves and listen to our bodies when it comes to our health. Often we see the signs but we simply wave it off as being tired, dehydrated, or simply getting old when in fact it can be something much more serious. Don’t overlook signs or symptoms that might suggest your Keratoconus is progressing.

Below are a few signs you should never write off when it comes to your vision care:

• Increased blurred vision
• Frequent squinting
• Sudden eye pain
• Increasing discomfort while wearing contacts
• Increased and Frequent eye rubbing
• Sensitivity to Light
• Decreased night vision

If you see any changes in your vision, you should report it to your eye care professional right away to determine whether you need to be seen.

Watch Dr. Brian’s Summer Eye Health Tips Featured on the News to get yourself ready for an eye safe summer:

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Has Keratoconus Affected Your Career?

May 19th, 2015

Has Keratoconus forced you to give up your career? While Keratoconus is a progressive condition there are several treatments that are now available to help preserve and improve your vision.

In the past, Keratoconus was a diagnosis that often meant a painful corneal transplant and a long recovery period. Now there are treatments that provide patients diagnosed with Keratoconus options that can slow, reverse, and even stop the progression of the condition giving you back your vision and your career.

Below are some signs & symptoms:

• Blurred vision
• Double vision
• Frequent prescription changes
• Frequent rubbing of the eyes
• Foreign body sensations
• Deceased ability to wear contacts comfortably
• Halos around lights
• Light sensitivity
• Decreased night vision

There are several treatments that can provide you relief right away depending on the severity of your condition.

Today’s Keratoconus Treatments Include:

Intacs:

Intacs® are tiny crescent shaped lens inserts that are placed in the layer of the cornea. Intacs® provide help reshape the cornea and decrease vision distortion. Once in place, Intacs® do not require maintenance. If for any reason you don’t want them in the future, they can be removed.

Typically the procedure takes about 7 minutes and has a recovery time of about 24-48 hours. Patients report the recovery is fairly easy with little to no pain. Most activities can be resumed right away. Intacs® can be combined with other procedures to improve the outcome for Keratoconus treatment, including the Holcomb C3-R ®, and CK.

The Holcomb C3-R ®:

The Holcomb C3-R ® is a revolutionary treatment with over 12 years of proven results to stop the progression of Keratoconus. Just ask Olympic Gold Medalist and Bobsledder Steven Holcomb. He was diagnosed legally blind and almost gave up his career as a driver for the US Men’s Olympic Bobsled team. He decided to have the C3-R ® procedure done. The Holcomb C3-R ® not only preserved his vision, but when combined with the ICL (insertable contact lens) allowed him to continue to compete and he won Olympic Gold in 2010 and Olympic Bronze in 2014.

The Holcomb C3-R ® uses a natural vitamin call Riboflavin which is activated with a UV light during an easy 30 minutes office based treatment. Once the solution is activated it strengthens the cornea fibers over the next 16 weeks helping to stabilize Keratoconus and stop progression. This treatment is non-invasive and recovery is less than 24 hours. In 99.3% of patients, the treatment only needs to be performed once.

Watch the story of Steven Holcomb here:

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What Are Keratoconus Inserts and How Do They Work?

May 12th, 2015

As you grow up, your eyesight may undergo changes. For example, you may notice that things begin to get blurry, or you have trouble seeing objects in the distance. For those with Keratoconus, a condition that occurs when the cornea in the eye begins to thin and becomes cone-shaped, distorted vision and sensitivity to light may arise. How can this be treated? Luckily, Keratoconus inserts can be used to treat patients with the condition, and a study in the October 2005 issue of Archives of Ophthalmology resulted in nearly half of participants achieving 20/40 uncorrected vision or better.

Keratoconus inserts, also known as Intacs, are thin plastic rings inserted into the mid layer of the corneas. The procedure to receive an insert for Keratoconus takes approximately 15 minutes to complete, and the inserts work by helping stabilize the eyes. Once surgery is complete, patients must use prescribed eye drops, to avoid infection, and schedule follow up visits with their doctor to monitor progress.

What Are Keratoconus Inserts and How Do They Work

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Combining Your Keratoconus Treatments & How this Can Benefit You

May 5th, 2015

For those who have been dealing with Keratoconus, you have probably ran across a lot of information on modern Keratoconus treatments. While there are a lot of treatment options open for this condition the past tells another story. In the past the main treatment besides glasses or contact lenses was a cornea transplant, which was painful and had a long recovery time.

New advanced treatments for Keratoconus have allowed patients to experience improved vision with short and virtually pain-free recovery. The best results for those with Keratoconus are when multiple treatments are combined. Below are a few Keratoconus treatments that can now be combined and are showing great effectiveness for those in need of vision stabilization.

Holcomb C3-R ®

Holcomb C3-R ® has been available since 2003. This procedure helps improve the strength of the weakened cornea fibers. It is a non-invasive procedure that works over 4-16 weeks to improve strengthen the cornea fibers. The Holcomb C3-R ® can be done on the same day as several other treatments like Intacs®, CK, or even PRK.

Intacs®

Intacs® is a procedure in which a tiny crescent shaped lens inserts are placed the layer of the cornea to help improve the shape and decrease the irregular cornea shape. This procedure can be done in combination with the Holcomb C3-R ® providing improvement in your quality of vision. It only takes 7 minutes to complete and it is showing great promise in the treatment of Keratoconus.

CK or Conductive Keratoplasty

CK uses radio frequency to reshape the cornea. This treatment improves the curves of the cornea, which can improve the overall vision. There is little to no pain during the procedure and it only takes around 3 minutes to complete. This treatment can be combined with the Holcomb C3-R ® or Intacs® and can provide improved outcome for reducing high amounts of astigmatism.
Benefits of Combining Treatments:

• Improved Vision Outcomes
• Less Recovery Time – only 1 day of procedures, rather than multiple days
• Faster Results

Watch Kristen Discuss Her Results of Having Holcomb C3-R®, Intacs® and CK Treatments

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