You have a pterygium…now what?

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A pterygium is a growth of fibro-vascular tissue that develops on the conjunctiva, or white of the eye, and extends into the cornea, which is the clear covering over the colored part of the eye.  This type of tissue growth causes symptoms similar to dry eye, such as burning, redness, or a foreign body sensation.

Image of cornea

Over-the-counter lubricating eye drops or a short course of steroid eye drops commonly treat and manage these symptoms. However, if the tissue grows into a patient’s line of sight, surgical methods are needed to preserve vision.

Exposure to UV light causes many occurrences of pterygium, so wearing proper sun protection is key to preventing this tissue growth. Be sure to ask your eye care professional about polarized sunglasses, which block damaging UV rays. Foreign bodies also cause tissue growth, because the objects continuously rub across the surface of the eye. Make sure that you wear the proper safety glasses when exposure to foreign bodies is a risk.

From the eye doctors, opticians and staff at Rinkov Eyecare Centers. We’ve provided comprehensive eye exams, contact lenses, eyeglasses, sunglasses and medical treatment of eye disease, such as cataract treatment, in Columbus, Ohio for over 35 years. Come see an optometrist at one of our Columbus locations – Downtown, West, East, Westerville, Dublin, Bexley, Worthington and Nationwide Plaza.

Stereo Acuity and Summation: The Advantage of Two Eyes

minions

 

Frequently during eye exams, patients will notice they see better on the eye chart with two eyes open, and will try to sneak around the cover paddle to get to two eyes ASAP. We are well familiar with the mathematical rule, the whole is not greater than the sum of its parts, but eyes are an exception to this rule. Summation describes the brain’s ability to add the vision from each eye in order to produce better visual acuity than one eye provides alone. As a result, the exam chart may read something like this:

20/20 Right(OD), 20/20 Left(OS), 20/15 Both(OU)

Stereo acuity, or 3-D vision, is another binocular (when two eyes work together) visionprocess. Because the eyes are physically separated by space, they view object from a different angle, and the brain can then interpret depth. For example, those of you without stereo cannot appreciate 3-D puzzles and movies.

Eye conditions that can limit summation and stereo acuity include refractive error, amblyopia, monovision, esotropia, exotropia and a host of possible medical eye concerns.

We advise all minions, one and two-eyed, to have regular eye exams.

From the eye doctors, opticians and staff at Rinkov Eyecare Centers. We’ve provided comprehensive eye exams, contact lenses, eyeglasses, sunglasses and medical treatment of eye disease such as cataract treatment in Columbus, Ohio, for over 35 years. Come see an optometrist at one of our Columbus locations – Downtown, West, East, Westerville, Dublin, Bexley, Worthington and Nationwide Plaza.

Eye boogers!

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You know that stuff you wake up with in the corners of your eyes? Some might call it sleep, eye boogers, mattering, or just plain old crusty stuff. Whatever you call it, most of us have it in the morning, so what is it exactly?

This discharge, known as rheum, is nothing more than a combination of mucus, oil, dead skin cells and other debris such as makeup or dust that accumulates in the corners of the eyes and lash lines while you sleep. Normally we remove excess mucus, oil and debris after each blink, preventing them from accumulating. However, we aren’t blinking while we sleep, which means that the debris forms the eye boogers we find in the morning.

Sometimes people mistake this crusty stuff as discharge from an infection. While a little mucus in the morning is normal, there may be something else going on if the consistency or amount changes. There are different types of discharge with different causes. Conditions like conjunctivitis (pink eye), blepharitis, sties and dry eye can all produce discharge along with other symptoms. You should schedule an appointment with your eye care professional if you experience any out-of-the-ordinary symptoms.

From the eye doctors, opticians and staff at Rinkov Eyecare Centers. We’ve provided comprehensive eye exams, contact lenses, eyeglasses, sunglasses and medical treatment of eye disease such as cataract treatment in Columbus, Ohio, for over 35 years. Come see an optometrist at one of our Columbus locations – Downtown, West, East, Westerville, Dublin, Bexley, Worthington and Nationwide Plaza.

Aging Eyes and Drooping Eye Lids

Many years ago, as my dad entered middle-age, my brother and I often teased him about his growing waistline. My dad would always defend himself, naming Dunlap’s Disease as the culprit.

“It’s Dunlap’s Disease! My belly has done lapped over my belt!” he explained.

My dad said many strange things that have stuck with me through the years, and now, as I enter middle-age, it appears he has stuck me with something else: Dunlap’s Disease must be genetic, because I am starting to show signs and symptoms.

blepharochalasis

In the picture above, you can see the upper eyelid has done lapped over the lashes. Dermatochalasis—or blepharochalasis when referring specifically to the eye—is an age-related condition that causes folds of skin to lap over and weigh the eyelid down. It is a common cause of ptosis, which is the medical term for drooping eyelids.

Patients who have this condition will experience blurred vision, visual interference from the eyelashes, and/or “blocked” vision, which results in visual field defects. This condition typically requires surgery to build up the muscles of the eye, effectively lifting the skin to clear the visual field.

There are many other causes of ptosis, which can be much more sinister. These causes are usually due to systemic difficulties such as a stroke or trauma to the eye, among others. If you are experiencing symptoms of ptosis, you should have a discussion with your eye care practitioner to find the cause and the appropriate remedy.

From the eye doctors, opticians and staff at Rinkov Eyecare Centers. We’ve provided comprehensive eye exams, contact lenses, eyeglasses, sunglasses and medical treatment of eye disease such as cataract treatment in Columbus, Ohio, for over 35 years. Come see an optometrist at one of our Columbus locations – Downtown, West, East, Westerville, Dublin, Bexley, Worthington and Nationwide Plaza. 

 

Will Evelyn keep her baby blues?

By Dr. Allyson Kowaleski

Keeping Those Baby Blues

The color of a baby’s eyes is determined by how much melanin is created by their melanocytes. Melanocytes located within the baby’s iris begin to secrete melanin in response to light exposure once the baby is born. This is why most Caucasian babies are born with blue eyes. Over time, if very little melanin is secreted, they will stay blue. If a moderate amount is secreted, they will turn green or hazel, and a large amount will lead to brown eyes. The amount of melanin secreted is linked to genetics, so a baby’s eye color is determined by his or her parents’ eye colors. Babies’ eye colors will usually change most in their first six months, but it may continue to change subtly over their first three years. A small percentage of people, less than 10%, may experience eye color change throughout life.

Evelyn’s dad has blue eyes and I have brown so it would seem she has about a 50/50 chance of keeping her baby blues. Here’s hoping!

From the eye doctors, opticians and staff at Rinkov Eyecare Centers. We’ve provided comprehensive eye exams, contact lenses, eyeglasses, sunglasses and medical treatment of eye disease such as cataract treatment in Columbus, Ohio, for over 35 years. Come see an optometrist at one of our Columbus locations – Downtown, West, East, Westerville, Dublin, Bexley, Worthington and Nationwide Plaza. 

CARE : 20|20 : LIFE®

*this advice is general in nature and does not constitute an exam. For specific advice, see your eye doctor or healthcare professional.*

Don’t worry, astigmatism is not a disease!

Astigmatism Diagram

Many times people hear that they have astigmatism and think it’s some sort of eye disease. This is not the case. Astigmatism is an optical or refractive disorder, similar to near sightedness and far sightedness. Astigmatism occurs when the cornea or lens of the eye has two different curvatures, similar to a football rather than a baseball. Having two different curvatures causes it to have two different powers, and it bends light through the eye differently. This causes a distortion that can be corrected by wearing glasses or contact lenses with two different curvatures that counteract the curvatures of the eye.

From the eye doctors, opticians and staff at Rinkov Eyecare Centers. We’ve provided comprehensive eye exams, contact lenses, eyeglasses, sunglasses and medical treatment of eye disease such as cataract treatment in Columbus, Ohio, for over 35 years. Come see an optometrist at one of our Columbus locations – Downtown, West, East, Westerville, Dublin, Bexley and Nationwide Plaza. 

CARE : 20|20 : LIFE

*this advice is general in nature and does not constitute an exam. For specific advice, see your eye doctor or healthcare professional.*

What is exactly is your cornea?

Image of cornea

Have you ever heard the term “cornea” and weren’t sure what it meant? The cornea is the clear tissue on the very front of your eye. Contact lenses are placed directly onto the cornea. Over-wearing contact lenses can cause changes to the cornea. Some changes such as new blood vessels, scarring, and infections can be seen during routine examination. Some changes occur on the cellular level and can only be seen with a specular microscope. Having annual eye exams ensures that your corneas stay healthy.

Find proper contact lens insertion and removal tips here!

From the eye doctors, opticians and staff at Rinkov Eyecare Centers. We’ve provided comprehensive eye exams, contact lenses, eyeglasses, sunglasses and medical treatment of eye disease such as cataract treatment in Columbus, Ohio, for over 35 years. Come see an optometrist at one of our Columbus locations – Downtown, West, East, Westerville, Dublin, Bexley and Nationwide Plaza. 

CARE : 20|20 : LIFE

*this advice is general in nature and does not constitute an exam. For specific advice, see your eye doctor or healthcare professional.*

Can your eyes change color?

Eye Colors

Many people are under the impression that their eye color can change with their mood or the weather. This is impossible. What causes the eye to be a certain color is the type and amount of pigment that is in the iris. This iris pigment is typically permanent by six months of age. The pigment cannot change day to day, just as the pigment in our hair or skin cannot change from day to day. Any day to day variations in eye color are most likely due to differences in light brightness and type of lighting (i.e. sunlight, incandescent, or fluorescent) in the current surroundings.

From the eye doctors, opticians and staff at Rinkov Eyecare Centers. We’ve provided comprehensive eye exams, contact lenses, eyeglasses, sunglasses and medical treatment of eye disease such as cataract treatment in Columbus, Ohio, for over 35 years. Come see an optometrist at one of our Columbus locations – Downtown, West, East, Westerville, Dublin, Bexley and Nationwide Plaza. 

CARE : 20|20 : LIFE

*this advice is general in nature and does not constitute an exam. For specific advice, see your eye doctor or healthcare professional.*

Sudden blurry vision

central serous retinopathy

Central serous retinopathy is a condition characterized by sudden onset central blurry or distorted vision.  It is caused by fluid that accumulates in the back of the eye, at the central macula.  No one really is sure of the cause, but it is most common in males in their 30′s to 40′s under higher amounts of stress.  Your eye doctor can diagnose this with an OCT or using fluorescein angiography.  Many cases resolve under close supervision or, in some instances, with laser treatment.  In many cases, 20/20 acuity is restored but some individuals may report a mild decrease in vision for many months after the fluid has decreased.

From the eye doctors, opticians and staff at Rinkov Eyecare Centers. We’ve provided comprehensive eye exams, contact lenses, eyeglasses, sunglasses and medical treatment of eye disease such as cataract treatment in Columbus, Ohio, for over 35 years. Come see an optometrist at one of our Columbus locations – Downtown, West Columbus, Dublin, Westerville and Reynoldsburg.

CARE : 20|20 : LIFE

*this advice is general in nature and does not constitute an exam. For specific advice, see your eye doctor or healthcare professional.*

Why it’s necessary to dilate your eyes for an eye exam

Dilated pupil

Many patients ask during their eye exam if it’s really necessary to dilate their eyes. The answer is “Yes.” Looking into the eye through an undilated pupil is like trying to look into a dark room through a key hole with a flash light. Only very small areas of the retina can be seen at a time. When looking through a dilated pupil, it is like looking into the room through an open door. More areas of the retina can be seen at once and a view of the peripheral edges of the retina can be seen.

Optomap eye exam

Another option that rivals a dilated exam, and may even be better, is an Optomap® photo of the retina. This has the advantage of allowing a view of the entire retina at once. It also photographs it, so it can be referred back to in the future for comparison, looking for any changes. Either the Optomap® or a dilated examination of the eyes is very important, and it is the only way to detect the presence of bleeding in the eyes due to diabetes, high blood pressure, and a number of other diseases. They can also detect retinal holes, tears, detachments and tumors.

Contact your local Rinkov Eyecare Centers to schedule your eye exam today! You can also request an appointment online.

From the eye doctors, opticians and staff at Rinkov Eyecare Centers. We’ve provided comprehensive eye exams, contact lenses, eyeglasses, sunglasses and medical treatment of eye disease such as cataract treatment in Columbus, Ohio, for over 35 years. Come see an optometrist at one of our Columbus locations – Downtown, West Columbus, Dublin, Westerville and Reynoldsburg.

CARE : 20|20 : LIFE

*this advice is general in nature and does not constitute an exam. For specific advice, see your eye doctor or healthcare professional.*