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GENERAL OPHTHALMOLOGY The hard-to-pronounce and often-misspelled word ophthalmology essentially means science of the eyes. Ophthalmology differs from optometry, although their positions overlap to some degree. Both ophthalmologists and optometrists can test patients‚ eyes, fit patients with glasses or contact lenses, and diagnose and treat eye conditions. An ophthalmologist, however, is further trained to perform eye surgery and prescribe medications.

Dr. Michaelis Jackson is a medical doctor who studied four additional years after completing medical school to specialize in ophthalmology. Although ophthalmology is a specialty in itself, the field encompasses many sub-specialties as well, such as glaucoma, eye trauma, ocular oncology, and refractive surgery. Dr. Jackson is a sub-specialized refractive surgeon with a great deal of experience. He belongs to several professional organizations, and you can read about his education and background here.

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Other Eye Diseases Glaucoma
Often referred to as “the sneaky eye thief, ” glaucoma usually isn’t recognized until its advanced stages, when it’s too late to treat. Early symptoms are characterized by a decrease in peripheral vision. Glaucoma is caused by intraocular pressure from fluid build-up in the eye. The increased pressure causes damage to the intraocular nerve, which sends signals to the brain and will eventually lead to blindness. Glaucoma can be treated with eye drops, microsurgery, and laser surgery. Annual eye exams are important for early detection.
Cataracts
Cataracts are caused by the natural aging process, overexposure to sunlight, or eye trauma. Common symptoms are cloudy vision, glaring lights at night and trouble reading in dim light. Cataracts aren’t dangerous until they begin to interfere with daily tasks. At this point your doctor will decide which type of surgery is right for you. Usually the clouded lens is removed via laser and a lens implant is inserted to suit your visual needs.
Diabetic Eye Disease
Diabetes deteriorates the blood vessels in the eyes, which can lead to blindness if not treated properly. There are often no symptoms, so it’s important to get a yearly, dilated eye exam to check for the disease. Other symptoms include ocular bleeding, retinal swelling, or clouded vision. Early stages of the disease can be controlled through maintaining proper blood sugar levels and diet. Laser eye treatment is effective if caught early.
Macular Degeneration
Macular degeneration affects the macula, or the part of the eye responsible for central vision. Symptoms include straight lines appearing wavy and blurred vision. This disease becomes more common over age 60. There are two forms of macular degeneration: wet and dry. Dry is the most common form of the disease. There is no current treatment for dry macular degeneration. However, supplements like zinc have been found to be helpful. Wet macular degeneration can be treated with laser surgery, photodynamic therapy and medications that slow the formation of blood vessels in the eye.
Pterygium
Pterygium is caused by over-exposure to UV rays and is most common in arid, dusty climates. It begins as a reddening of the eye, but can grow to become a white, fleshy patch that interrupts vision. Early stages can be treated with eye drops. Later stages may require tissue-grafts and anti-metabolite medications. The best treatment is prevention by wearing sunglasses.

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