Diabetic retinopathy, this disease is a leading cause of blindness in American adults. It is caused by changes in the blood vessels of the retina. In some people with Diabetic Retinopathy, retinal blood vessels may swell and leak fluid. In other people, abnormal new blood vessels grow on the surface of the retina. Any person with diabetes is most likely to get diabetic retinopathy. The longer the person has had diabetes the more likely they will get diabetic retinopathy.
Glaucoma refers to a category of eye disorders often associated with a dangerous buildup of internal eye pressure, which can damage the eye's optic nerve that transmits visual information to the brain. With untreated or uncontrolled glaucoma, you might eventually notice decreased ability to see at the edges of your vision. Progressive eye damage could lead to blindness. As the second leading cause of blindness, glaucoma creates at least some vision loss in more than half of the approximately 2.5 million American estimated to have the eye disease.
Conjunctivitis, also known as Pink Eye, is an infection of the outer most layer of the eye that covers the sclera, the conjunctiva. The three most common types of conjunctivitis are: viral, allergic, and bacterial. The viral and bacterial forms are contagious. The viral type is often associated with an upper respiratory tract infection, cold or sore throat. When related to allergies, the conjunctivitis symptoms are often seasonal, or may be caused by cosmetics, perfume, or drugs. The bacterial conjunctivitis is often caused by bacteria such as staphylococcus and streptococcus. The bacteria will determine the severity of the infection.
A cataract us a clouding of the eye's natural lens, which lies behind the iris and the pupil. The lens works much like a camera lens, focusing light onto the retina at the back of the eye. The lens also adjusts the eye's focus, letting us see things clearly both up close and far away. The lens is mostly made of water and protein. The protein is arranged in a precise way that keeps the lens clear and lets light pass though it. But as we age, some of the protein may clump together and start to cloud a small area of the lens. This a cataract, and over time, it may grow larger and cloud more of the lens making it harder to see. Cataracts are classified into one of three types:
- A Nuclear Cataract - is most commonly seen as it forms. This cataract forms in the nucleus, the center of the lens, and is due to natural aging changes.
- A Cortical Cataract - which forms in the lens cortex, gradually extends its spokes from the outside of the lens to the center. Very common in diabetics.
- A Subcapsular Cataract - begins at the back of the lens. People with diabetes, high farsightedness, retinitis pigmentosa or those taking high doses of steroids
may develop a subcapsular cataract.
Amblyopia, also called lazy eye, is loss of vision in one or both eyes not helped by glasses alone and that has no easily explained reason for the loss of vision. Lazy eye is the main cause of vision loss in children and affects about 4 out of every 100 children. Many children with lazy eye will show no signs of eye trouble.
Causes of Lazy Eye:
- Eyes that do not point in the same direction
- Different focus between the eyes (one eye sees close and the other sees far away)
- Focus problems (such as farsighted, astigmatism, and near sightedness).
Sight loss due to lazy eye can be prevented. Successful amblyopia treatment is more likely in children less than 7 years of age. And, recent research shows that improvement may occur between 7 and 17 years. Find out how the Ohio Amblyope Registry can help you and your child.