Clinica London encourages everyone to be aware of looking after their eyes so that they can prevent avoidable loss of vision. It is advisable that a regular eye examination is done every two years, either with your optometrist or your ophthalmologist. The major causes of permanent loss of vision, which can be preventable if caught early enough are:
All three of these conditions are more common in people over the age of 40, although diabetic eye disease can certainly affect people in the younger age group depending on what age they were when they developed diabetes. Diabetic eye disease is typically characterised by macular oedema and gradual loss of central vision and earlier development of cataract. Screening is becoming essential.
As our population in the UK ages, we will soon have the situation where half of the long-term eye conditions including glaucoma, macular degeneration, cataracts and refractive errors affect roughly half the population. Of those who have diabetes, almost three quarters will develop problems with their eyes directly related to their diabetes within 15 years of developing diabetes. So if a younger person develops diabetes, they will get an earlier retinopathy, and this is worsened by poor control of blood sugar.
At Clinica London, we have an excellent team of ophthalmologists who can check your vision including visual acuity, the intraocular pressure, retina, macular and optic nerve check, and it can thereby exclude or diagnose early preventable eye disease.
Our ophthalmic team consists of Professor Michel Michaelides, Mr Jaheed Khan, Ms Laura Crawley and Ms Jane Olver. In addition Ms Naz Raoof looks after eye problems in children, neuro-ophthalmology and adult squints. In this blog post, we are talking about adult patients as they get older developing macular degeneration, glaucoma, diabetic eye disease, cataracts and new refractive errors.
Diabetic retinopathy is one important theme of this blog as in diabetes tiny blood vessels in the retina become damaged and can potentially cause permanent loss of vision. High-resolution retinal scanning is a routine part of the eye examination carried out at Clinica London. We use the SLO, which is a scanning laser ophthalmoscope and the OCT, plus autofluorescence to look at the retina, macula and disc extensively and at the deep layers in minute detail.
We recommend macular and retinal scans particularly for diabetic retinopathy, macular degeneration and glaucoma. Not all patients who have glaucoma have high pressures, but some may, and often changes can be noted on their macular and retinal scans using the SLO and the OCT. By making an early diagnosis, treatment can be started and thus prevent severe visual loss.
A comprehensive eye examination at Clinica London can assure you that your eyes are in good health. You have to be proactive because this is a personal responsibility you have, which can have a direct impact on reducing preventable blindness. The reality is that many symptoms of eye disease are invisible or not be immediately obvious and require therefore an optometrist or ophthalmologist to help diagnose them.