Comprehensive Eye Exams in Columbia, MD
The Medical Eye Center’s ophthalmologic exam for both adults and children provide a comprehensive, thorough examination of your eyes to provide you insight into your health. A myriad of diseases have ocular manifestations ranging from arthritis to xeroderma. The eye is the window to the body from the eyelids to the optic nerve. The external examination of the eyes may help diagnose elevated cholesterol levels or thyroid disease while visualization of the optic nerve and the vessels in the back of the eye may provide insight into arteriosclerosis, hypertension, diabetes mellitus, sarcoidosis and carotid artery disease.
The eye examination will start with a thorough review of your medical history, medications and family history in addition to any presenting problems. The physical portion of the exam will start with an assessment of your vision to determine if glasses or contact lenses are appropriate. The examination will then proceed to the external and motility examination. A biomicroscope will evaluate the surface of your eye and the lens. The pupils will be checked and the pressure in your eyes measured. You will expect to be dilated to thoroughly evaluate the optic nerve, the macular region, retinal vessels and periphery. We will then communicate your findings to your personal physician. Specialized testing that may be needed to more fully evaluate any pathology found or suspected will be discussed with you. Many ancillary tests including laser scanning of your optic nerve and retina can be done in our offices.
The comprehensive eye exam at the Medical Eye Center is anything but a simple exam for glasses; it will allow your physician to make your eye exam the window to your health.
Available Services and Treatments Include
Botox/Fillers/ZO Health/Obagi Skincare Products
Chalazion/Cyst/Lesion Removals (Also, Biopsies)
Cataracts occur when the lens of the eye loses its clarity and as a consequence vision deteriorates. It can be said that everyone if they live long enough will develop cataracts; medical conditions such as diabetes mellitus or the treatment of diseases such asthma or colitis with steroids may precipitate cataract formation but given enough time we will all develop them. The fact that a cataract exists is not a reason to remove the lens if you are seeing well enough to do the activities you need to do for your daily living. A cataract should be removed when the vision to function normally becomes compromised. Generally if you can see adequately there is no rush; if it’s not broken you do not have to fix it. Occasionally cataract surgery may be recommended to enable adequate visualization and treatment of a retinal problem but generally if the cataract is so dense that we cannot see the retina in all likelihood you will not be able to see out through the same cataract.
The physicians at the Medical Eye Center through your dilated pupil will be able to see the lens of your eye and advise you on proper management. When you reach the point where something must be done we will be happy to follow you through the entire process of the cataract removal and lens insertion. We will offer you the latest in intraocular lenses to help you optimize your vision to its fullest potential.
The Medical Eye Center’s approach that your eye is the window to your body lead to our association with New Amsterdam Genomics (NAG, www.nagenomics.com). NAG’s philosophy is to bring “precision medicine to life” by analyzing your DNA to enable people to not have to react to symptoms but by proactively preventing a problem their DNA predisposes them to.
Many of our patients have a parent or sibling with glaucoma or macular degeneration and the next logical question is do I have that disease or am I predisposed to develop the condition. MEC’s physicians will detect whether you have the condition but the more important question is can I do anything proactively to prevent the vision loss these condition produce in the first place.
Genetic factors are considered to play a key role in the development of ophthalmic diseases. Genetic variants are associated with increased susceptibility to optic nerve damage in glaucoma, juvenile glaucoma , macular degeneration and retinitis pigmentosa. Dr. Hammer has had his DNA sequenced by NAG and bizarrely had two autosomal recessive genes for ophthalmic disease. He did not have the known genes for macular degeneration but had the CYP1B1 gene associated with glaucoma and a second gene associated with retinitis pigmentosa. The CYP1B1 gene is the dominant genetic cause for glaucoma in children in the Middle East and Europe. He is now being much more proactive in getting his eyes examined for minute changes in his eyes.
The newest frontier in disease prevention is to detect the condition before the symptoms appear. Since Dr. Hammer had his own DNA sequenced by NAG they are working with us to enable treatment decisions base on utilizing our patients own genetic makeup.
If you have been diagnoses with diabetes mellitus, the comprehensive medical eye examination by the physicians at the Medical Eye Center determine if you have the ocular consequences of the disease. We will be able to determine if you have diabetic retinopathy or the other ocular manifestations. Diabetic retinopathy is the most frequent cause of new cases of blindness among adults aged 20 to 74 years. According to the American Diabetic Association “during the first two decades, nearly all type 1 diabetic patients develop retinopathy and >60%of patients with type 2 diabetes have retinopathy”.
The longer duration that one has diabetes mellitus and the poorer the control the more likely you are to see the complications of this disease. Time marches on and you cannot control how long you have diabetes but glycemic control is vital to limit the progression of diabetic complications. The U.K. Prospective Diabetes Study has shown “for every percentage point decrease in the hemoglobin A1C there was a 35% reduction in the risk of microvascular complications”. At the Medical Eye Center will work with you and your physician to thoroughly evaluate your eyes for any diabetic complications and help institute treatment to prevent you from losing your vision.
Contact us to schedule an eye exam with our compassionate ophthalmologists. We provide patients throughout the Columbia, Maryland, area with the quality care they need to improve their eye health.