Cataract is a term used to describe the clouding of the crystalline lens of the eye. The most common cause of cataracts is the normal aging of the lens. This is the reason why most of those afflicted with cataracts are seniors. Less common causes of cataract include trauma, systemic diseases such as diabetes, inflammatory eye diseases, and the use of certain drugs such as steroids.
The lens lies behind the iris and the pupil (see diagram). It works much like a camera lens. It focuses light onto the retina at the back of the eye, where an image is recorded. The lens also adjusts the eye's focus, letting us see things clearly both up close and far away.
The lens is made of mostly water and protein. The protein is arranged in a precise way that keeps the lens clear and lets light pass through it. But as we age, some of the protein may clump together and start to cloud a small area of the lens. This is a cataract. Over time, the cataract may grow larger and cloud more of the lens, making it harder to see.
Dr. Ullman is an expert in the modern art of cataract surgery. He performs the procedure through a tiny 3-millimeter incision, under topical anesthesia. No needles to numb the eye, or strong intravenous drugs are necessary. The cloudy lens is removed using gentle pulses from a small probe that emits high frequency sound waves. The procedure is called "Phacoemulsification". A lens implant, made out of a soft material such as acrylic or silicone, is then rolled into a syringe-like device that allows Dr. Ullman to inject it into the eye.
This all takes place through the initial three-millimeter incision! At the end of the procedure, the wound will self-seal, so that no stitches are necessary. Cataract surgery done this way is quick (usually taking 15-20 minutes), relatively painless, and provides a fast visual recovery. Most people have useful vision immediately afterwards, and return to work quickly.Glaucoma Management
Glaucoma is a sight threatening disease that is usually caused by elevated eye pressure, which in turn causes damage to the optic nerve. Peripheral vision is initially lost, but as the disease progresses, central vision can also be effected. There are no alarming signs of early glaucoma so it is important for the general population, especially those over the age of fifty, to have an annual glaucoma screening.
The first line of treatment for glaucoma consists of eye pressure lowering eye drops. Fortunately, a new class of glaucoma medications called "Prostiglandin Analogues" is on the market today, and they are very effective in lowering eye pressure. There are several other classes of eye drops that can be used additively to further enhance the lowering of eye pressure. If pressure cannot be controlled adequately with eye drops, a laser treatment would be the second line of treatment. If laser treatments were unsuccessful in controlling the pressure, a surgical procedure would usually be recommended.
At the Ullman Eye Center, we are experts in the medical, laser and surgical treatment of glaucoma, and have the latest imaging devices and diagnostic tests to aid in the diagnosis and management of this disease. In addition, Dr. Ullman participates in clinical trials, testing new treatments for glaucoma. If you have glaucoma and would like to participate in a clinical trial, please contact our office.Complete Eye Exams
We offers complete eye care services - providing full medical eye exams, including examinations for glasses and contact lenses.
We have full optical services, with hundreds of stylish eyeglass frames and lenses to choose from, as well as the latest in contact lenses. Our opticians will help you find what is right for you.Botox Injections
We provide Botox injections for eyelid and facial wrinkles. Come see what we can do to make you look and feel your best.
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