Common Eye Conditions and Diseases
Do any of these conditions describe your vision? Call us today.
The latest sight-saving tools are available at Menard Eye Center for eye disease diagnosis and management. It’s important to see an eye doctor if you are experiencing any of these symptoms or if you think you may have an eye condition or disease.
Common Eye Conditions
Myopia/Nearsightedness: Close objects are seen clearly, but objects at a distance appear blurred.
Farsightedness/Hyperopia: Objects at a distance are seen clearly, but closer or near objects appear blurred.
Astigmatism: Vision appears blurry, because there is an irregularity in the shape of the cornea, or in the curvature of the lens within the eye.
Presbyopia: This is an age-related condition, affecting people age 40 and over, in which one gradually loses of the ability to focus on near objects.
Amblyopia, commonly known as “lazy eye,” is as childhood condition that occurs from the lack or loss of development of clear vision in one eye. It is not caused by an eye health problem and cannot be fully corrected by eyeglasses or contact lenses. Amblyopia is often confused with strabismus/crossed eyes and can go undetected by parents and pediatricians.
Strabismus, commonly known as “crossed eyes,” is a condition usually found in childhood. Both eyes are unable to focus on the same object at the same time.
Dry eye occurs when there is an insufficient amount of tears to lubricate the eye. Symptoms can include sensations such as stinging, burning and scratchiness; stringy mucus; excess irritation from smoke and excessive tears.
Computer Vision Syndrome
Computer Vision Syndrome is a grouping of eye and vision-related problems that can result from prolonged computer use. Symptoms can include sensations such as burning, irritated or tired eyes, and fluctuating vision.
Blepharitis/Meibomian Gland Dysfunction
Belpharitis and Meibomian Gland Dysfunction are conditions caused by an inflammation of the eyelids and eyelashes. Symptoms can include: red, irritated or itchy eyelids and the formation of dandruff-like scales on the eyelashes.
Red eyes are caused by enlarged, dilated blood vessels, which can lead to the appearance of redness on the surface of the eye. Red eyes can occur for a number reasons, ranging from minor conditions to emergencies. The amount of redness does not signify the severity of the condition.
Eye infections occur when harmful microorganisms, such as bacteria, fungi or a virus enters the eye or the surrounding area. Eye infections generally affect only one eye. Symptoms can include itchy or watery eyes, and infections can lead to redness, pain, discharge, watering and light sensitivity.
An inflammation can occur in response to a viral or bacterial infection, allergies, environmental irritants, surgery or trauma. It is important to treat and control an inflammation to avoid any scarring or permanent damage. Even a small amount of scar tissue can cause permanent vision damage.
Eye allergies are often hereditary and can occur with other types of allergic responses. Allergies can trigger other conditions such as, conjunctivitis or pink eye. Symptoms can include red, swollen or itchy eyes.
Floaters or flashes are shadowy images that can appear in person’s field of vision. They are caused by particles floating in the fluid that fills the inside of the eye. Floaters or flashes are often symptoms of a retinal tear or detachment.
Retinal tears and detachment are a tearing or separation of the retina from the eye’s underlying tissue. This alters the way light enters the eye. Retinal tears and detachment can occur after trauma or an eye surgery. Symptoms can include floaters and flashes.
A cataract blocks or alters the passage of light into the eye by clouding the lens. This can make a person’s vision blurry and if left untreated it can cause severe vision damage or even blindness. The majority of people who suffer from a cataract are 65 years of age and older, but early stage cataracts can occur in one’s 40s and 50s and in rare cases even infants can experience cataracts.
Glaucoma often occurs in individuals over 60, but it can be a hereditary condition. African-Americans age 35 and over are also at risk. Glaucoma occurs when the optic nerve, which is the eye’s direct channel to the brain, becomes compressed. The compression stops the nerve from carrying visual images to the brain. Glaucoma is often referred to as the “silent thief of sight,” because it rarely exhibits symptoms. However, in many cause the disease manifests as a decrease in peripheral or side vision. If left untreated, glaucoma can cause severe vision damage or even blindness.
Macular degeneration is an age-related eye disease most commonly found in people age 60 or over. It is a degenerative disease that attacks the eye’s macula, damaging central, straight-ahead vision. If left untreated, macular degeneration can cause severe vision loss or even blindness.
Everyone age 60 or over should have their eyes check by an eye doctor for macular degeneration. You can also monitor your vision for macular degeneration, or if you know you have the disease, monitor its progression at home with an Amsler Grid.
Click the PDF symbol for a printable Amsler Grid.
Print this grid and follow these instructions (if you have reading glasses, wear them for the test):
• Hold or place the grid 12 to 14 inches from your face.
• Cover one eye and focus the other on the dot in the center of the grid.
• Do the lines look wavy or crooked? Does every box look the same? Are any lines missing?
• If the answer is "yes" to any of these questions, make an appointment with an eye doctor to check for macular degeneration. Call Menard Eye Center: 337 478-I-SEE (478-4733).
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Diabetic retinopathy is a direct effect of diabetes. It can manifest in people with Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes. Diabetic retinopathy occurs when the blood vessels swell in the retina, which is where visual images are formed. If left untreated it can cause severe damage vision or cause blindness.
Hypertensive retinopathy is a direct effect of high blood pressure. High blood pressure can damage the blood vessels in the retina. The higher one’s blood pressure and the longer it has been at a high level can increase the amount of vision damage. Symptoms can include headaches, visual disturbances and occasionally sudden vision loss.
Retinopathy of Prematurity
Retinopathy of prematurity affects premature infants. It is caused by abnormal blood vessel development in the retina. This condition is usually only detected through an eye examination. Symptoms and long-range effects can include: abnormal eye movements, crossed eyes, severe nearsightedness and white-looking pupils.
Interested in finding out more about common eye conditions and diseases? Here are some resources that you may find helpful.