610-628-2022 [email protected]

The Other Side of the Exam Chair

It was my turn to be on the other side of the exam chair.

I was sitting at home on a Sunday afternoon, when I first saw sparks of light out of the corner of my right eye.  At first, they occurred a few times an hour.  By Sunday night, they were happening a few times a minute.  They moved in curved arcs along my peripheral vision.

Since I happen to know people trained in eye care, I sent a text to the office staff to tell them what was happening.

They asked me all of the right questions:

  • Did you sustain an injury to the eye? No
  • Was there a curtain falling across my vision? – No
  • Did you see a sudden shower of floaters? – No
  • Any loss of vision? – No
  • Any pain? – No

Dr. Moran asked me, “What would you tell a patient who called with these symptoms?”  I answered, “We would tell them to call us if it gets worse, or they can answer YES to any of the above questions. We would then schedule them for a dilated exam the next day.” 

I understood everything that I was told.  It was a “classic textbook” issue.  I have spoken to patients who were experiencing the same symptoms, and explained that they should come in for an exam, but not to worry. Flashes can be a common occurrence.

But…I must admit that it felt different being the patient. Even though I understood what was happening,  I felt better after checking in with Dr. Moran and the rest of the team.

By the next morning, the symptoms had stopped. I had a very thorough dilated eye exam, and everything was normal. I knew that the sparks of lights were caused by the vitreous tugging on the retina, which is common.  It is seen more often in older adults.  I am 58, so I fit that profile.  I knew that the issue was most likely age-related.

When you are having an issue with your eyes, don’t delay, contact our office.   

We will ask you the key questions that mean the difference between an emergency, or something that can wait until you can come into the office for an exam.

You can feel confident that you are in good hands with Dr. Moran and the staff at Moran Eye Associates.  We take your concerns seriously, because we know what it is like to be on the other side of the exam chair.

P.S.  Almost two months later all is well.  I am very aware of the importance of  follow up exams, and will make sure to see my ophthalmologist regularly!  Bobbi

Measuring Eye Pressure (IOP)

As part of your comprehensive eye exam, we check the pressure of your eye, the Intraocular Pressure (IOP).  This test, called tonometry, is one way to see if you are at risk for glaucoma. Regular screenings are a simple way to monitor your eye health.  Early detection is essential in the treatment of glaucoma, since many times there are no symptoms with increased pressure, unless it is sudden.

UNDERSTANDING EYE PRESSURE:

Increased pressure (IOP)

Inside the eye, there is a cycle of fluid production and fluid drainage.  This fluid, in the front part of your eye, is called the the aqueous humor.  The aqueous humor nourishes your eye and helps it to keep its shape.  If this cycle is out of balance, and more fluid is produced than is able to drain effectively, IOP increases.  Over time, this Increased eye pressure may cause damage to the optic nerve.  A general guideline for normal eye pressure is between 10 and 21 mm/hg.

HOW WE MEASURE EYE PRESSURE:

Measuring IOPIn our office, we measure eye pressure by instilling a drop that numbs your eye.  Using a blue light, we then use an applanation tonometer that gently touches the surface of your eye. This painless test is a very effective way of measuring your pressure.  It is helpful for the patient to relax and breathe normally while we perform this test.

Although there are many other ways of measuring eye pressure, many people are familiar with the “puff of air test”.   This test, called non-contact tonometry, uses a rapid air pulse to flatten the cornea. Your pressure is measured by detecting the force of the air against your eye.  Although we don’t use this process, often when we ask patients them to “put your chin in the chin rest and forehead against the band” they worry we are going to puff air at them. They don’t seem to like it! 

We can’t emphasize enough the importance of comprehensive eye exams. It is especially important to have an eye exam if you have a family history of eye disease, diabetes or high blood pressure. The best way to protect your vision is to come in for an exam, where Dr. Moran will evaluate your risk for disease and advise you of the optimal schedule of visits to protect your eye health.

Schedule your exam today, by calling our office at 610-628-2022, or by filling out the form on the website.

Q&A about LASIK with Intralase Technology

Patients are curious about what happens during LASIK surgery. Q&A

Dr. Moran knows that a well-informed patient makes the best medical decisions. Understanding what happens during LASIK can lead to a more calm and comfortable experience. We’ve highlighted the most commonly asked questions about all-laser LASIK with Intralase.  The best way to find out if you are a candidate for this vision correction procedure, is to come in for a free one-hour consult appointment.

LASIK vision correction is a 2-step process.

  1. First, we create the flap in the surface of the cornea.
  2.  Second, we lift the flap and apply laser treatment to reshape the corneal tissue.
What is Intralase?

Intralase flap creationA:   The IntraLase Method uses laser light to create a flap in the outer layer of your cornea.  The laser creates an even layer of microscopic bubbles under the corneal surface.  The flap is hinged, like the page of a book.  Dr. Moran then lifts the flap by gently separating the tissue where these bubbles have formed. After the flap is lifted, Dr. Moran moves to the second step of the procedure, applying the laser treatment to reshape the cornea.

What makes using Intralase technology unique?

A:  The IntraLase Method uses a laser to create the flap.  This laser-guided application creates a smooth even surface after your flap is lifted.

Are there benefits to using the Intralase Method?

A:  Although the risk of flap-related complications with LASIK is very low, with Intralase, the rate of flap complications are further reduced.  The flap created by the laser is determined and created by your surgeon, so it is tailored to the contours of your eye.

How long does LASIK surgery take?

A: The total time in the surgery suite takes about 20 minutes.  During step 1 of the procedure, creating the flap, the laser application takes about 15-20 seconds per eye.  Step 2 of the procedure, applying the laser treatment, depends on your prescription.  It can take from just a few seconds, to about one minute per eye.  Dr. Moran will  let you know the length of your specific treatment. During the laser application, he will count down the seconds, so you know how much time remains.  He keeps you informed about what you can expect, every step of the way.

What is the difference between LASIK and PRK (photorefractive keratectomy)?

A:  PRK vision correction is done without creating a flap.  Instead, PRK starts by removing a small area of tissue on the surface of the cornea.  A clear contact lens is placed on the eye after PRK surgery, to aid in comfort while healing.  Dr. Moran will remove the contact lens when the cornea is healed, usually about 3 days after surgery.  The recovery time for PRK is longer than LASIK. With LASIK you should be able to drive the day after surgery, while after PRK surgery, you may not see clearly enough to drive for a few days.  Why do patients choose PRK?  PRK is an option for patients who may not be able to have LASIK due to thinner corneas.  PRK is also preferred for patients who are at risk for eye injuries, including patients who do boxing, mixed martial arts, or who are joining certain levels of the military.

Ready for your  LASIK Consult?  Fill out the form, give us a call, or send a text, to get started on your way to better vision with LASIK.

 

 

 

 

Dry Winter Eyes

Winter is the season for dry eyes.  Tears provide moisture

If you suffer from dry, irritated eyes all year round, chances are they will be worse in the winter.  When the heat is on in the house, office and car,  your eyes become more dry.  

Artificial tears, also called Lubricating Eye Drops – are your first line of defense.  Whether they are your own natural tears, or artificial tears  from a bottle, tears keep your eyes healthy and help you to see better in 4 unique ways. 

The 4 Benefits of Tears: 
  1. Protect the eyes & keeps them lubricated
  2. Wash away irritants & foreign objects
  3. Reduce the risk of infection in the eyes
  4. Maintain a smooth, clear surface on the eye to help you see clearly.

If your eyes are dry, you are missing out on the benefits that tears provide. Don’t suffer, there are different strategies to treat dry eyes. To find out the best treatment for you, make an appointment.  Dr. Moran will discuss the best way to improve your comfort and vision.  In the meantime, start using over the counter artificial tears for immediate relief. 

How do we treat the lack of tears? 

There are three main methods of treatment: Supplement, Stimulate, or Retain your tears.

SUPPLEMENT: The simple solution is to need to supplement your tear film. Using over-the-counter artificial tears can bring you immediate relief. Keep some on hand. We have them available for purchase in the office.

STIMULATE: There are drop medications that help you produce more tears and better quality tears on your own. Restasis and Xiidra are available by prescription. These prescriptions do not take effect instantly. They begin to improve your tear film over time.

RETAIN: There are two ways to help you retain your tears, heat therapy and punctal plugs.
Using heat therapy, we can improve the flow of the outer, lipid layer of tear film. This oily outer layer seals in your tears, and keeps your tears from evaporating too quickly. Heat therapy is an in-office, relaxing, 15-minute treatment of continuous warmth that you enjoy while sitting in a comfortable recliner!
Punctal plugs work to keep your tears from draining from your eyes too quickly. These tiny silicone plugs are easily inserted in the opening on the inner corner of your eyelids. Closing this “drain” conserves your tears, retaining them in your eyes for increased comfort and better vision.

Click here for more information about treating dry eye http://moraneyeassociates.com/dry-eyes/

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What Does this Test Do? Part 2: Topography

Corneal Topography rings

Corneal Topography Test

As you look into through the bright red colored rings, the topography machine creates a map of the clear front portion of your eye, the cornea.  Corneal topography allows us to detect irregular conditions of the surface that can’t be measured in other ways.

How does a map of the cornea help us evaluate your vision?

A healthy cornea is very important to your vision, because 77% of the eye’s focusing ability is done by the cornea.  Light enters the eye through the clear cornea. The shape and curve of the cornea plays an important role in the quality of vision. An eye with normal vision has an evenly rounded cornea, like a basketball.  An eye with an astigmatism has an unevenly curved cornea, more like a football.

Corneal topography is performed by projecting lighted rings onto the surface of the eye.  These rings are reflected back and measured by the instrument, and a map of the cornea is created.

Topography is an important tool in measurements for LASIK Surgery.  LASIK surgical correction changes the shape of the cornea to help patients see more clearly.  During LASIK, the shape of the cornea is changed to help images focus properly on the retina. Below you can see how the shape of the eye is changed with the laser after LASIK surgery. The photos show the same eye before and after LASIK.

Corneal Topography is just one of the testing resources that we use when treating our patients.  You can trust Moran Eye Associates to use the tools that we need to keep your eyes healthy, and your vision the best it can be.  If you have questions about your vision, contact Moran Eye Associates.  We focus on making vision clearer.

What Does this Test Do? Part 1 – AutoRefractor

What is the first test we do when you come into the office for a complete vision exam?

Autorefractor measures vision.

The Autorefractor measures your prescription

We take a measurement of your vision with the AutoRefractor.

Image used for measuring your prescription

Focus on the balloon!

When you take a seat at the autorefractor, we ask you to look into the device.  You will see a blurry hot air balloon at the end of a long straight road. As the balloon comes into focus, we measure your prescription.

We ask you to focus on the image (balloon) to keep your eye centered while we take measurements.  It only takes just a few seconds to measure using an autorefractor.  The balloon is at the center of the image, which aligns your eye perfectly for the test. 

When we use this machine, nothing touches your eye, and there is no puff of air!

The autorefractor provides an objective measurement of a person’s refractive error and prescription for glasses or contact lenses.  The device measures how light is changed as it enters your eye.

Calculating your glasses prescription

Better 1 or Better 2?

We don’t use the numbers from the device to order your prescription glasses or contacts. The autorefractor is just part of the process.  The information from the autorefractor is used as a starting point to determine your best prescription.  We take these numbers and dial them into the phoropter.

Here is where your opinion comes in.  As we cycle through lenses, we ask, “Is it Better 1 or Better 2?”  Your responses help us to pinpoint your best vision.  When we show you different choices, we aren’t trying to trick you!  We are showing you different options to find your best correction.