California Retina Specialist
Our California retina specialist has received numerous honors and are board certified ophthalmologists dedicated to ensuring that our patients receive excellent care. The five senses: sight, touch, taste, smell, and hearing are critical to how we experience the world. We take in our environment through these senses, and when one of them is lacking or no longer working, the body can be set out of balance as the other senses begin to overcompensate. Your vision is one of the five senses, and should you be facing issues or problems, seeking proper care from an ophthalmologist will be critical. At Retina Associates of Orange County, our team knows you have questions, and by scheduling an appointment with us, we can help explore the answers.
What is a retina specialist?
A retina specialist is an ophthalmologist who specializes in treatment for eye disease and even provides eye surgery. A retina specialist must have extensive training and educational experience that amounts to up to 10 years of training. Retina specialists have a very precise job to do when administering treatment to patients as they are working within a small space, with incredibly delicate tissue and require the use of lasers and microscopes during the process. Types of conditions a retina specialist treats include:
- Macular Degeneration
- Diabetic Retinopathy
- Macular Edema
- Retinal Tears
- Retinal Detachments
- Retinal Vein Occlusion
How does a retina specialist differ from an ophthalmologist?
As a prospective patient, our California retina specialist knows that you may be wondering why you can’t just see an ophthalmologist for treatment for issues related to the eye. Ophthalmologists must undergo extensive training and have the ability to both diagnose and treat eye diseases. In addition, to fitting people for contact lenses and eyeglasses, an ophthalmologist works to prevent, diagnose, and treat eye disease. A retina specialist has typically completed fellowship training and ultimately focuses on diagnosing and treating retina disease.
What are the signs that I should see a retina specialist?
Vision issues should never be taken lightly, and if you notice irregularities or signs that there is a problem, you must immediately seek care from a retina specialist. One of the primary reasons someone might seek a retinal specialist is for a retinal detachment. If you are experiencing any of the following, it will be critical that you seek care from a retinal specialist as soon as possible:
- A shadow in your vision
- Blurred vision
- Flashes of light
- Impact on your peripheral vision
What is the risk of putting off necessary treatments?
Your vision is critical, and failing to seek treatment can cause serious issues. If you have vision problems, or if your ophthalmologist has referred you to a retina specialist, it’s critical to act as soon as possible. Failing to treat a condition like a retinal tear can permanently impact a person’s vision, resulting in vision loss and even blindness.
Our team at Retina Associates of Orange County have engaged in research pertaining to clinical trials and are always striving to stay up to date on the latest retina technology and treatment. Your vision is important, which is why we are so dedicated to providing our patients with cutting edge treatment aimed at providing the best possible solutions to your issues. Whether you have experienced eye trauma or are suffering an age-related condition, retinal detachment, or even cancer, our California Retina Specialist may be able to help.
When You Should See a Retina Specialist
A retina specialist is an ophthalmologist with advanced training to treat diseases affecting the eye’s vitreous gel and retina. It is advisable to meet with a California retina specialist under the following circumstances.
A Foreign Object In Your Eye
When a foreign object gets into your eye, it is essential to seek medical treatment as soon as possible to prevent further complications. Retina Associates of Orange County advise individuals to avoid rubbing their eyes, which can cause additional damage before a doctor can safely remove the object.
You Have Diabetes
Patients with diabetes are susceptible to blurry vision and blindness when blood vessels supplying nutrients to the retina burst and cause retinal scars. Although the damage to the retina may be irreversible, a retina doctor can examine the back of the eye to detect subtle changes that could lead to better management of diabetes to prevent blindness.
You Experience Eye or Head Trauma
Blunt force trauma is a leading cause of retinal damage causing the delicate retina at the back of the eye to detach from the supportive layer of blood vessels that supply it with nutrients. This type of injury requires urgent medical treatment to prevent blindness. Therefore, when individuals see floaters, flashing lights, or shadows in their visual field immediately following trauma, they should seek treatment from a California retina specialist who can use surgery or other means to push the retina back in place and reattach it.
You Have Sudden Vision Loss
Although sudden vision loss can happen following retinal detachment from trauma, the Retina Associates of Orange County doctors also see this symptom among patients diagnosed with glaucoma, diabetes, and a high risk for stroke, which can cause central retinal artery occlusion. CRAO results when plaque and other conditions cause excessive pressure in the central retinal artery, leading to its blockage. Treatment may include therapy to infuse oxygen into the oxygen-starved retina. Medications, including intravenous tissue plasminogen activator, may also be necessary to break up clots that a retina doctor detects.
You Experience An Increase of Floaters and Flashes
Floaters resemble spots, strings, and cobwebs that appear to float across your field of vision. They tend to increase with age as fibers within the eye’s gel-like vitreous form clumps that cast shadows across the retina. Likewise, momentary flashes of light can occur when the vitreous gel shrinks and tugs at the retina. Both conditions are usually harmless, though individuals should seek an evaluation by a California retina specialist when symptoms suddenly increase or are accompanied by vision loss.
Retina Associates of Orange County doctors can detect and treat a broad range of conditions that affect vision.
When to Visit a Retina Specialist
When it comes to your eye health you may think that having your ophthalmologist available is all that you need. That isn’t always the case depending on what sort of issues you are may be experiencing with your eyes. There are different scenarios when you will need the help of a California retina specialist and your regular eye doctor can refer you to the Retina Associates of Orange County for further assistance. It’s smart to be aware of the following symptoms and situations that indicate it is time to visit a retina specialist.
Odd Flashes of Light or Excessive Floaters
It is jarring to experience new and strange flashes of light in your vision and having many new floaters can be very surprising. It’s important to come to the Retina Associates of Orange County if you are experiencing something like this. This symptom could be an indicator of a torn or detached retina and should be addressed quickly.
Missing Spots in Your Vision
Missing spots in your eyesight could be a sign of a macular hole. An experienced California Retina Specialist can help determine the cause of your issues and will be prepared to repair it. Surgery is often required to get your eyesight back to a healthy place. It is important to ask for a referral to the Retina Associates of Orange County swiftly if you are experiencing gaps in your vision. Don’t just think that your vision is changing from old age. This is also a condition that has a chance to spread from one eye to the other. So it’s extra important to find a physician you trust that you can see regularly.
Distortions or Reduced Central Vision
You will need to seek out a California retina specialist if you suddenly are looking at items or lines that you know are straight but that appear bent to you. Experiencing visual distortions or blocked vision in your central line of sight are both symptoms of age-related macular degeneration. Retina Associates of Orange County can determine the cause of these issues and help treat the condition or slow down the effects of the disease. Seeking out answers quickly from a trusted doctor is the best course of action you can take.
It’s important to take your vision seriously and be educated about different eye diseases that can arise during your lifespan. Having a California retina specialist you know and trust can mean faster care for you and those you love.
How to Prepare for an Appointment with a Retina Specialist
If you are suspected to have a disease of the retina, your first step is to schedule an appointment with a California retina specialist. These examinations take longer than traditional eye examinations, so plan to be there for at least two hours. Here are a few tips to prepare for your appointment:
- Leave Early: Many offices will give you the opportunity to fill out new patient paperwork online. However, if you wish to fill these documents out in person, you should try to arrive at your appointment about 15 minutes early. This way, you will have enough time to fill out the paperwork and ask questions.
- Bring the Right Items: To make your appointment go smoothly and quickly, there are a few items you will need to bring, including a photo ID, insurance card, referral from a doctor and sunglasses to wear after your appointment. If you take any medications, you should also write the names of them down on a notepad and bring them with you to the exam. Your retina specialist will want to know what types of medications you are currently taking, and you do not want to forget any.
- Prepare a List of Questions: If you might have a retina condition, you probably have a lot of questions on your mind. You should not hesitate to ask any of these questions during your appointment. For instance, you may want to know what treatment options are available and what sorts of activities you should avoid. The more questions you ask, the more you will know about your condition. Write these questions in a notebook so that you don’t forget them.
- Arrange for Transportation: When you see a California retina specialist, he or she will dilate your eyes for the exam. Your vision may be blurry as a result, so it is not safe for you to drive home. Ask a family member or friend to drive you home from your appointment.
- Bring a Friend or Family Member: Having an appointment with a California retina specialist may be nerve-wracking at first, so don’t hesitate to ask a close family member or friend to accompany you. They can offer you the support you need and listen to the information the specialist provides about your condition. Your loved one may catch information that you could have missed.