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Ophthalmology

Ophthalmology  is the branch of medical science dealing with the anatomy, function, pathology, and treatment of the eyes.

Healthcare providers dealing with ophthalmology fall under three categories- 

 

1. Ophthalmologists
An ophthalmologist is a physician who specializes in the medical and surgical care of the eyes and visual system and the prevention of eye disease and injury.

2. Optometrists
An optometrist is a health service provider who deals with vision-related problems.

3. Opticians
An optician is a technician who deals in optical devices. They validate and provide lenses, frames,and other specially fabricated optical devices or contact lenses based upon prescription to the intended wearer. 

Ophthalmology Treatments :

Types of Vision-related disorders 

Ophthalmology treatments in India cover numerous eye conditions and other vision-related disorders.

Glaucoma:

It is a chronic, progressive optic neuropathy caused by a group of ocular conditions that lead to damage of optic nerve with loss of visual function. The most common risk factor known is raised intraocular pressure (pressure of the eye which can be measured by an instrument).

Normal intraocular pressure = 10–20 mm Hg (Schiotz)

  • Suspicious case = 20–25 mm Hg (Schiotz) 
  • Glaucoma =Above 25 mm Hg (Schiotz)
  • Hypotonic = Below 10 mm Hg (Schiotz) 

 

Treatment options include:

  • Medical—It is always the treatment of choice in the early stages. 
  • Surgical—It is considered when the medical treatments are unable to treat the vision-related disorders. 
  • Argon or diode laser trabeculoplasty (ALT or DLT)—It is the most advanced technique. 
  • Recently advanced procedures—These include laser filtration, seton valves, deep sclerotomy, and viscocanalostomy. 


 

Diabetic Retinopathy:

Diabetic retinopathy refers to the retinal changes that occur in patients with diabetes mellitus (people with abnormally high blood sugar).  

 

Symptoms of Diabetic Retinopathy are:

  • Spots or dark strings floating in your vision (floaters)
  • Fluctuating vision
  • Blurred vision
  • Impairedcolorvision
  • Dark or empty areas in your vision
  • Vision loss 

With an increase in life expectancy in diabetic patients, the incidence of diabetic retinopathy has increased. It is the leading cause of blindness, particularly in an affluent society. It is common after the disease has lasted approximately 10 years. 

It usually occurs in patients after the age of 20 years. It affects young or old alike because it is the diabetic age and not the actual age that is important. Treatment options include adequate medical control with low fat, laser, surgery and intravitreal medication

Age-Related Macular Degeneration (ARMD):

It is also known as senile macular (small area of the retina in the eye) degeneration. It is an age-related, bilateral, non-hereditary degeneration. 

 

Treatment options are:

  • Anti-angiogenic drugs. These medicines are directly injected into the eyes. They stop new blood vessels from developing and blocking the leaking from the unusual vessels that cause wet macular degeneration.
  • Laser therapy (Photodynamic Therapy): In this case, the surgeon uses high-energy laser light that can destroy vigorously growing abnormal blood vessels from AMD.

 

Tumors Of The Retina Retinoblastoma (Glioma Retinae):

It is a common congenital malignant tumor of the retina occurring in early childhood. It is due to the proliferation of neural cells that have failed to evolve normally. Treatment options are chemotherapy, Enucleation Radiation, and cryotherapy. 

Retinal Detachment (Separation Of The Retina):

Retinal detachment is a serious eye disorder and happens when a layer of tissue at the back of the eye that processes light pulls away from the tissue around it. The retina is unable to work properly when this happens. Retinal detachment can cause permanent vision loss if not treated in the right way. A disconnected retina doesn't hurt.

 

The symptoms include:

  • Flashes of light
  • Seeing lots of new "floaters" (small flecks or threads)
  • Darkening of your peripheral (side) vision

 

The main principle of treatment is to approximate and adhere to the torn part of the retina to an area of other layers of the eye via Photocoagulation and cryosurgery. 

Myopia (nearsightedness):

It is a refractive error in which the eye is unable to bend (refract) light properly. A patient can look close objects clearly, but the distant objects appear blurred. 

Myopia can be treated either by spectacles or through the operative procedures. 

Treatment Options include:

Spectacles—Myopia is treated by prescribing suitable correcting spherical concave lenses for constant use

Refractive surgery: The cornea is reshaped using a laser beam which helps in reducing the refractive error. Lesnes or eyeglasses may be needed even after the surgery 

Cataract:

Any opacity in the lens or its capsule, whether developmental or acquired, is called a cataract.

Treatment options include:

  • Mydriasis (dilation of the pupil of the eye) with atropine- It is advocated at least until puberty if the cataract is small, central, and the vision is good.
  • Optical iridectomy- It may be done if the opacity is small, central, and stationary.
  • Lens aspiration- Aspiration of lens matter can be done as the lens material is soft in children. 
  • Lensectomy- In this operation, the lens, including anterior and posterior capsule along with anterior vitreous, is removed. 

 

Other optical procedures include:

  • Refractive corneal surgery                  
  • Lensectomy
  • Pars Plana Vitrectomy
  • Lasik Surgery
  • Vitrectomy
  • Cataract

 
  • INTACS
  • Retinoblastoma
  • Cornea
  • Refractive errors
  • Occuloplasty
  • Cornea
  • Ptosis correction surgery
  • PediatricOpthalmology


 

Other Eye Surgeries:

  • Oculoplasty and Orbit
  • Cornea transplant
  • Pterygium removal surgery
  • Eye muscle surgery
  • Diabetic retinopathy
  • Retinal surgery
  • Cornea and refractive surgery

 

Frequently Asked Questions

How is glaucoma harmful to vision?

Glaucoma can cause vision loss, and it can decrease the amount and quality of information sent to the brain. Glaucoma affects or damagesthe optic nerve at the back of the eye.
 

Will someone go blind from glaucoma?

It depends on the type of treatment and stage of diagnosis. If diagnosed at an early stagewith proper treatment, glaucomacan be controlled with less or no future vision loss. If in case left untreated,then it will first affect peripheral vision then central vision and causes blindness. 

 

What are the preparation for cataract surgery?

A week before your surgery, your doctor will conduct some tests to measure thedimensions of your eye, like size and shape. The tests will help himto select the best artificial lens for your eye. Just before the surgery,he will tell you not to eat and drink anything for 12 hours. 

 

What should I do if my vision gets blurred or cloudy after cataract surgery?

Your doctor may recommend the YAG procedure to clear up your cloudy vision. In the YAG procedure, the surgeon uses a laser to open the coagulatingaround the lens; this will let more get through your artificial lens and hence, clear your cloudy vision. 

 

How Soon Can I Drive After Cataract Surgery?

This totally depends on your condition like ageand stage of cataract. It is better to consult your surgeon. He will evaluate your vision and tell you when it’s safe for you to drive. 

 

Is diabetic retinopathy curable?

The treatment can slow the growth of diabetic retinopathy, but it is less likely to reverse any vision loss. It is not completely curable.

 

What are diabetic retinopathy treatments currently available?

The best and most affordable treatment is to keep your diabetes and blood pressure under control.