What Do Eye Experts Wish Patients Knew About Their Eye Health

At the 2023 American Society of Retina Specialist meeting in Seattle, Washington, eye experts were asked “What do you wish your patients knew about eye health?”

A majority of the experts that were asked believe that most patients feel their vision is important, but they take it for granted. Many people assume that if their vision seems fine, they have no eye health issues. However, this is a misconception.

People with seemingly good vision can have hidden problems. Problems that may have no symptoms, until irreversible damage is done.

Experts strongly recommend regular dilated examinations with an eye healthcare, professional and a fundus photo to ensure overall ocular health. Dilating the pupil allows more light into the eye and allows your doctor to see inside the eye. The most widely accepted way to check for eye diseases is a dilated eye exam. Early detection of disease is important. Catch them when they are easy to treat. Treatment is more likely to be successful when detected early.

The doctor will evaluate these functions during a dilated eye exam:

• Visual acuity
• Visual field
• eye muscle function
• Pupil response
• Tonometry test

Another tool for early detection the doctor may recommend for patients to have is an optical coherence tomography (OCT). This test is used to generate a picture of the back of the eye.

Catching eye diseases early can:

• Help prevent or delay vision loss.
• Preserve your vision and quality of life.
• Allow for earlier and more effective treatment.

That is why most eye experts recommend patients have regular eye exams and cannot stress it enough. Your risk for eye disease will determine how often you should get a dilated eye exam. Talk to your doctor about what is right for you.

If you are:
• Over age 60
• African American and over age 40
• Have a family history of glaucoma
• Have diabetes or high blood pressure,

Ask your doctor how often you need an exam. Most of these people should get a dilated eye exam at least once a year.




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