Periodic eye examinations are important to the health of your eyes. Many eye and vision conditions happen with few to no symptoms until the condition is severe. Early diagnosis and treatment are important to maintain good vision and eye health and to prevent vision loss.

At We Are Eyes, our specialists perform various evaluations to assess the health of your eyes and diagnose conditions such as glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy, macular degeneration, dry eye syndrome, and computer vision syndrome.

Glaucoma

Glaucoma is a complex, yet common eye disease that results from a buildup of fluid within the eye. This excess fluid increases inner eye pressure (intraocular pressure, or IOP) and leads to optic nerve damage.

Glaucoma affects over 3 million Americans, mostly over the age of 40, who suffer from the most common type of glaucoma, primary open-angle glaucoma. This type of glaucoma is hereditary.

Boca Raton optometrist Dr. Erin Weston can diagnose glaucoma and determine the extent of damage within your optic nerve in several ways: by measuring your IOP, examining your optic nerve, and assessing your visual field.

Treatment

Damage caused by glaucoma cannot be reversed, but treatment and regular checkups can slow its progression or prevent vision loss. Treatment typically begins with prescription eye drops to lower eye pressure (IOP) and improve how fluid drains from your eye. We can also prescribe medications if eye drops alone do not lower your eye pressure.

If you are in need of surgical treatment, We Are Eyes can recommend an ophthalmologist to perform surgery. We work closely with a number of eye surgeons throughout Palm Beach County and South Florida.

Diabetic Retinopathy

Diabetic retinopathy is caused by type 1 or type 2 diabetes and is the leading cause of blindness in the United States among adults. It affects the vision of more than half of all adults diagnosed with diabetes.

Chronically high blood sugar can damage the blood vessels in the retina, leading to diabetic retinopathy. Vision loss is likely to occur without early detection and management.

At We Are Eyes, our Boca Raton eye doctors can diagnose diabetic retinopathy through a comprehensive eye examination with testing that evaluates your retina and macula. For patients with diabetes, the test will help our optometrists determine vision difficulties caused by diabetes or other health conditions.

Supplemental tests may be performed, such as fluorescein angiogram, to take pictures of the blood vessels in the eye and check for blood circulation problems in the retina.

Treatment

In many cases, symptoms of diabetic retinopathy do not occur until the condition is severe. Symptoms may include blurred vision or the appearance of dark spots. Early detection through regular screening is important, which we can perform at We Are Eyes in Boca Raton, Florida.

There is no cure for diabetic retinopathy, but laser surgery may be effective in preventing vision loss. The retina must not be severely damaged for laser treatment to work.

Other treatments for diabetic retinopathy may include injections of an anti-VEFG (vascular endothelial growth factor) medicine, or an anti-inflammatory medicine to help shrink new blood vessels.

Macular Degeneration

Macular degeneration, also called age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a common eye disease and the leading cause of vision loss among adults age 65 and up. This disease of the optic nerve destroys the central vision required to see objects clearly. Without early diagnosis and management, your risk for vision loss increases.

There are two types of macular degeneration: dry and wet. Dry macular degeneration tends to develop slowly, causing gradual changes in your vision. Wet macular degeneration, or advanced AMD, causes rapid loss of central vision.

Treatment

AMD cannot be cured. While there is no treatment for the dry form of macular degeneration, zinc supplements and other vitamin and mineral combinations may slow the progression of the disease. Low vision aids may help improve quality of life for people who experience vision loss.

For wet macular degeneration, treatment may help slow progression of the disease. Medications injected into the eye block the growth of new blood vessels that may leak and contribute to vision problems.

Laser therapy prevents vessels from bleeding, which stop further damage to the macula. Photodynamic laser treatment seals leaks at the center of the macula without damaging the central vision.

Dry Eye Syndrome

Do your eyes ever feel itchy and uncomfortable? Do they sting and burn after long periods of sitting in front of a computer or an air conditioned room? These are just a few symptoms of dry eye syndrome.

This medical condition is very common and develops when the eye does not produce enough tears or the tears evaporate too quickly. Dry eye is often chronic and needs to be managed to avoid daily discomfort.

Dry eyes can be a result of environment, disease, medication, hormones, contact lenses, or surgical history. We can easily evaluate the quantity and quality of your tear film and initiate a treatment plan.

Treatment options may include artificial tears, medication like Restasis or Xiidra, and supplements. Our doctors are certified to insert punctal plugs and may suggest them as a course of treatment.

At our optometry office in Boca Raton, Florida, we also conduct the Schirmer’s test. This test is required by most plastic surgeons to rule out dry eye before their patients undergo any eyelid surgery.

Computer Vision Syndrome

If you spend hours every day working at a computer, or you are constantly looking at a tablet or smartphone (and who isn’t these days?), you are at risk for computer vision syndrome (CVS), or digital eye strain. We can detect this condition during a comprehensive eye exam and recommend eyeglasses with a special coating to block glare and harmful blue-violet light coming from the computer or device screen. Learn more about CVS.

At We Are Eyes in Boca Raton, Florida, our optometrists can evaluate and treat your eyes for a number of conditions, or refer you to an ophthalmologist, if necessary, for surgical treatment. Come in for your comprehensive eye exam today. To make an appointment, call (561) 912-3211 or request one online.