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Special Testing

Lifetime Eyecare Center specializes in diagnosing and treating various eye diseases and conditions including:
 
Glaucoma
  • when the fluid pressure in the eye is damaging the eye's nerve tissue, causing gradual, permanent vision loss
  • develops slowly and painlessly, without any signs or symptoms
  • risk factors include age (over age 40), being nearsighted, heredity and diabetes
  • testing for glaucoma involves measuring your eye pressure, side vision tests and assessing the health of your optic nerve
  • advanced testing for early detection of glaucoma includes:
    - Threshold Visual Fields: computerized ultra sensitive testing of your side vision to detect very subtle changes characteristic of glaucoma
     - Heidelberg Retina Tomographer (HRT3): A 3-D imaging technology that allows us to detect incredibly small changes in the shape and depth of your optic nerve-this is vital in determining if glaucoma is present or progressing
  • treatment includes medicine drops, laser treatment or eye surgery
  • annual comprehensive eye exams are the best way for you to prevent needless vision loss from glaucoma

Links to more information on glaucoma:
www.aoa.org/glaucoma.xml

 
Macular Degeneration
  • atrophy of the central retina causing gradual loss of straight ahead detail vision
  • risk factors include heredity, being fair complected, over 60, having cardiovascular disease, being a smoker, being overweight, ultraviolet light exposure, and poor nutrition
  • testing includes examining the retina during an eye exam, a special vision test called an Amsler Grid, and HRT3 testing of the macular area for evidence of fluid under the retina
  • treatment includes special vitamin supplements, laser treatments and injections of special medicine into the eye

Links to more information on macular degeneration:
http://www.aoa.org/Macular-Degeneration.xml

 
Diabetic Retinopathy
  • slowly damages the retinal blood vessels which causes gradual retina damage and vision loss
  • has no symptoms and affects half of all diabetics
  • poorly controlled blood sugar greatly increases the risk of eye complications
  • early detection and timely laser treatment can usually prevent severe vision loss
  • excellent control of your blood sugar, blood pressure and cholesterol can significantly reduce the risk of diabetic retinopathy
  • all diabetics should have an annual retina exam by an eye doctor, whether they are having problems or not

Links to more information on diabetic retinopathy:
http://www.aoa.org/diabetic-retinopathy.xml

 
Retinal Detachment
  • when the retina separates from the back wall of the eye
  • is a medical emergency and can result in devastating vision loss
  • risk factors include being highly near sighted, eye injuries, age and diabetic retinopathy
  • symptoms include sudden onset of seeing spots or floaters, flashes of light, a curtain or veil coming over your vision, or a sudden decrease in vision
  • consult us immediately if any of these symptoms occur, to prevent potential severe vision loss
  • treatment includes laser treatment or major surgery if the retina is detached
 
Cataracts
  • a cloudiness or opacity of the internal lens of your eye (not a film over the eye)
  • is much like a "dirty window" inside the eye, and can cause blur, glare, a gradual decrease in vision and frequent changes in your glasses prescription
  • caused by age, injury, side effect of some medications, smoking, and exposure to sunlight
  • cataract surgery is an out patient procedure where the eye's natural lens is replaced with a plastic lens implant, using small incision microsurgery
  • we diagnose cataracts during a comprehensive eye exam
  • we will help you decide whether to have cataract surgery and we'll help you select a surgeon-we will also provide all of your post op care

Links to more information on cataracts:
http://www.aoa.org/cataract.xml

 
 "Pink Eye" (Conjuctivitis)
  • redness of the eye accompanied by discharge and irritation
  • most often a viral infection, but may also be caused by bacteria, an allergic reaction, and overwearing or sleeping in contact lenses
  • treatment includes prescription eye drops and ointments, staying out of contact lenses and proper hygiene
  • we diagnose this by history, visual acuity, and a careful examination of the eye's surface with a slit lamp biomicroscope

Links to more information on pink eye
http://www.aoa.org/conjunctivitis.xml

 
Dry Eye Syndrome
  • caused by lack of tears or poor tear quality which leads to irritation of the eye
  • risk factors include age, low humidity, forced air heat, contact lens wear, computer vision syndrome, medications, cigarette smoke, and dry, hot climates
  • symptoms include a gravelly , gritty "sand paper" sensation, burning, excessive tearing and blurred vision
  • treatments include using artificial tears, humidifiers, taking omega 3 supplements such as fish oil or flaxseed oil, drinking more fluids (except caffeine and alcohol), changing contact lens material and care solutions, and improving computer station ergonomics
  • we can implant punctum plugs in a brief, painless procedure to slow internal drainage of your natural tears
  • we can prescribe a medical drop call Restasis, which helps your eyes to produce more tears

Links to more information on dry eye syndrome
http://www.aoa.org/dry-eye.xml

 
Please contact Lifetime Eyecare Center if you have any questions or concerns about your eyes or vision.
 
 

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2008 Lifetime Eyecare Center - Sleepy Eye, Minnesota

 
 
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Dr. Hutchins

 
 

Lifetime Eyecare Center
Dr. James M. Hutchins
105 Main Street West
Sleepy Eye, MN 56085
Phone: 507-794-2126