Other Disorders of the Vitreous and Retina
In addition to treating diabetic retinopathy, Dr. Squillante also has expertise in treating other disorders of the vitreous and retina. The retina is the nerve layer at the back of your eye that sends images to your brain. The vitreous is a clear fluid in the center of the eye. Other than diabetic retinopathy, the most common diseases that afflict the retina and vitreous are Macular Degeneration, Retinal Detachment, Retinal Tears/Holes, and Lattice Degeneration.
Macular degeneration occurs when abnormal blood vessels grow under the macula and bleed. The macula a small area of the retina that enables you to see fine details. Regarding symptoms, macular degeneration can cause distortion of and compromise vision in the patient’s central field of vision. As a result, those who suffer from this disease have difficulty seeing straight ahead, but can still see to the sides with their peripheral vision.
Most cases of macular degeneration are age-related. Unfortunately, symptoms can take years to become noticeable. However, by regularly visiting a retina specialist like Dr. Squillante, you can detect and possibly treat it in its early stages, and limit further damage.
Although no cure exists, several promising treatments have recently become available. These new medications can stabilize the patient’s vision, and even improve it 40% of the time. Treatment involves the injection of the medication into the eye under sterile conditions by a retina specialist. These new treatments offer great hope to those who suffer from macular degeneration.
Retinal Detachment & Retinal Tears/Holes
A retinal detachment occurs when the retina is pulled away from its normal position. Sometimes, the retina is pulled in several places, causing retinal tears or holes. Retinal detachments and tears cause vision to become blurred. Ultimately, both conditions result in blindness if not treated.
A number of conditions increase the chances of a retinal detachment or tear, including nearsightedness, severe eye trauma, previous cataract surgery, previous retinal detachment in the other eye, family history of retinal detachment, and weak areas in the retina. Also, diabetic retinopathy can cause retinal detachments.
Early warning signs of a retinal detachment include flashing lights, floaters, and a gray shade moving across your field of vision. In addition, regular exams by a retina specialist can catch this treatable disease before it causes significant loss of vision.
Specialists like Dr. Squillante, can treat retinal detachments through surgery, during which they reattach the retina. For their part, retinal tears often respond to laser therapy or cryotherapy, both of which are less invasive than traditional surgery.
Lattice degeneration occurs when areas in the periphery of the retina atrophy in a lattice-like pattern. These lesions can eventually result in retinal holes retinal tears, and ultimately, retinal detachment. As with the diseases discussed above, early detection by a retina specialist is critical. Some forms of lattice degeneration do not require treatment, but others are treated with laser therapy.