Glaucoma is a disease that damages your eye’s optic nerve. It usually happens when fluid builds up in the front part of your eye. That extra fluid increases the pressure in your eye, damaging the optic nerve.
Glaucoma is known as “the silent thief of sight” because it has few symptoms or warning signs in the early stages, and it usually causes no pain. It is possible to experience a significant decrease in visual field before noticing symptoms, and this vision loss is irreversible. Because glaucoma is so challenging to detect, it is important to have a routine comprehensive eye exam every year. Digital retinal photos taken during the exam allow our doctors to compare the eyes over time to detect early signs of glaucoma. Most forms of glaucoma are successfully treated with eye drops; laser treatments and eye surgery may be necessary for more advanced cases of glaucoma.
A cataract is a clouding of the eye's natural lens. When the lens becomes cloudy, light rays cannot pass easily through the lens, and the image that we are looking at is blurry; the vision is blurry. Cataracts usually develop as part of the normal aging process, but they can also result from eye injuries, certain diseases, medications or genetic factors. Our doctors diagnose and manage cataract care. When the cataract affects the vision to the extent that you cannot read or see distant objects comfortably, we will recommend cataract surgery. Our office co-manages cataract surgery with the best surgeons in the Denver metro area, so if a patient is diagnosed with cataracts and is ready for surgery, both Dr. Gosling and Dr. Anderson will refer the patient for a consultation with a trusted corneal specialist.
Diabetic patients should have a dilated retinal examination each year. Laser treatments have proven to slow the progression of retinal eye disease for many patients. Diabetes often stimulates the growth of new blood vessels in the back of the eye, which ultimately leak and damage the retina. If this condition is discovered early, laser treatment can destroy these vessels. We have the latest instruments used to detect changes in the back of the eye. If our doctors discover advancing diabetic eye disease that can be treated or needs further evaluation, they will refer the patient for consultation and further testing to a trusted retinal specialist.
Macular degeneration is a generic term referring to deterioration of the macula and loss of central (detailed) vision. There are many forms of macular degeneration, however the substantial majority of cases are due to age-related macular degeneration (AMD). AMD is extremely common. In the United States, it is the most common cause of vision loss in individuals over the age of 60. It is a disease and not simply part of the normal aging process. With AMD, the central part of the retina which provides detailed and color vision gradually degenerates, resulting in poor central vision. This can lead to a blind spot or distortion in the center of one’s vision. Depending on its cause, there may be treatment available to improve and prevent further vision loss. A photo taken with our Easy Scan digital retinal camera allows for early detection and monitoring. In more severe cases, we may refer our patient to a trusted retinal specialist.