Regular eye exams are an important part of maintaining good ocular health for yourself, as well as for your keiki. Annual exams allow our doctors to assess for any changes to your vision or the development of any eye disorders. Often times, your doctor can diagnose an eye problem even before you begin to experience symptoms. This early diagnosis is crucial as many eye diseases are treatable when caught early.
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Adult Eye Exams
Our office is equipped with state of the art technology to assist in the diagnosis, examination and treatment of all ocular conditions. All of our doctors are trained to check the ocular health of the eyes and always perform full and comprehensive examinations. Cataracts, glaucoma, macular degeneration, strabismus, diabetes, hypertension and dry eyes are just a few of the conditions that are routinely investigated during the eye exam. And, of course, a new prescription for glasses and contact lenses will be made for you at the time of your exam.
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Pediatric Eye Exams
A child’s vision affects more than just quality of life. Good vision is crucial to scholastic success, social interaction, and many extracurricular activities, e.g. athletics. Dr. Rupa Wong is a pediatric ophthalmologist, board-certified and fellowship-trained in the care and treatment of children’s vision. Our diagnoses at Honolulu Eye Clinic can tell parents if their children have a number of conditions.
Visual Acuity – Our tests can determine if your child is nearsighted, farsighted, or astigmatic. These conditions may require children to wear glasses.
Amblyopia – This occurs when one eye is significantly weaker than the other, resulting in a peculiar prescription and single eye dominant vision. This may be a side effect of strabismus (see below). This condition is often called “lazy eye”. Treatment for this condition often involves patching (covering the stronger eye to develop the weaker eye’s vision), or certain medical eye drops.
Strabismus – Misaligned eyes occur when the eyes point inwardly (esotropia), outwardly (exotropia), or at different heights (hypertropia/hypotropia). This condition is often called “lazy eye” as well, which is a minomer, but it does frequently occur with amblyopia. The primary treatment for this condition is surgery on the eye muscles.
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Not all patients should have contact lenses. The risk of having a serious complication with contact lenses is small, but when such problems do occur, they can cause long-term problems. Some patients leave their contacts in for days on end without a problem. Others, however, can do the same thing and end up getting a serious eye infection. For that reason, we recommend all our patients err on the side of caution when using contact lenses. We will make sure that you know the risks and benefits of contacts, and we can even give you recommendations about the different types of lenses. Hard contact lenses, soft contact lenses, and scleral contact lenses all offer different advantages, and we can help you figure out which lens type would be most suited to your needs.
Diabetes is an epidemic in the United States. Many don’t know that diabetes has an adverse effect on nearly all the body, including the eye! Diabetics run a risk of developing a condition called diabetic retinopathy. This condition damages the nervous tissue at the back of the eye, and it can lead to permanent and irreversible loss of vision.
At our practice, we can take measures to test your vision and look for signs of diabetic retinopathy. In general, behavior that helps you with your diabetes will also help with other body problems, but once diabetic retinopathy occurs we have to monitor it very carefully.
Age-related macular degeneration, or AMD, is a leading cause of blindness in the United States. Unlike cataracts, this age-related condition has no cure, and can lead to permanent blindness left to its own devices. Unlike glaucoma, which begins affecting the peripheral vision, AMD affects the central vision first, making it easy to detect but difficult to treat. One common method of detecting macular degeneration involves using an Amsler grid, as depicted here. Do any of the lines appear wavy to you?
There are new treatments in the works for macular degeneration, but AMD remains a disease that is difficult to treat. If you’ve noticed problems in your central vision, contact us to see if you have this condition, and what steps we can take to prevent it from getting worse.
Glaucoma is the leading cause of preventable blindness in the United States. It is a class of diseases characterized as doing damage to the optic nerve, thus damaging vision that cannot later be repaired.
If you know someone with glaucoma, then you’ve probably heard them talk about their eye pressure. High intraocular pressure is often times the damaging symptom of glaucoma. Generally, ophthalmologists who treat glaucoma look for ways to reduce intraocular pressure. This can be done in several ways.
Medicinal Eye Drops – There are a number of eye drops that can be prescribed to reduce intraocular pressure.
Laser Treatment – Certain laser procedures are capable of opening fluid pathways, lowering intraocular pressure.
Surgery – Glaucoma surgery is often performed when medicinal eye drops and laser procedures fail to significantly lower intraocular pressure.
Thyroid Eye Disease
Patients diagnosed with Graves’ Disease, an autoimmune disease that drastically alters thyroid hormones, have a fairly high chance of developing secondary ocular comorbidity. This can cause eye socket swelling, and many patients with Graves’ Disease will feel or have the appearance of bulging eyes.
Although the ocular symptoms of Graves’ Disease are self-limiting (they’ll go away eventually), the eye may retain unusual appearance afterwards. For this, cosmetic surgery may be necessary to return the eye to its normal appearance.
Dry eye disease can take a few different forms, and generally it comes down to low tear quantity or poor tear quality. Some patients simply don’t have enough tears. For those patients, we recommend using preservative-free tears to lubricate the eye when it feels dry.
Other patients may have a more difficult problem to solve – poor tear quality. Most of the time, this is due to a deficiency in the eye’s oil layer. The eye consists of three layers: aqueous, oil, and mucus. The oil layer is the outermost layer, and it prevents tears from evaporating too quickly. The aqueous layer provides the tears with moisture. The mucus layer allows the tears to spread evenly across the eye’s surface. A deficiency in any layer can cause problems, but the most common problem is with evaporative dry eye. In this condition, the oil layer is ineffective, and tears just don’t stay long enough.
To remedy evaporative dry eye, there are several things we can do. Certain supplemental oil vitamins can help. Also, a technique called warm compresses can help. Warm compresses require a patient to simply warm a damp washcloth in a microwave and place it across their eyes. This washcloth should be warm, but cool enough to touch and not cause discomfort. Doing this a number of times can unclog the Meibomian glands that secrete oil and restore normalcy to the eye’s tears.
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The uvea is the middle layer of the eye. This layer can sometimes become inflamed, resulting in symptoms that may include severe redness, blurred vision, pain, sensitivity to light, pupil anomalies, and more. This condition can be quite serious if left untreated, and may have a number of underlying causes that are too numerous to list. Bottom line, if your eye is extremely red and uncomfortable, we suggest scheduling a same-day appointment with us or another ophthalmologist.
Failed School Vision Screenings
Many students will unfortunately fail their vision screenings in grade school. For those students, we can make a number of recommendations. If one eye is weak, then we can patch the strong eye to develop the weaker eye. If it’s a simple matter of poor bilateral visual acuity, then we can prescribe glasses. Whatever your needs are, we suggest acting sooner than later so that your child does not begin his/her academic career at a disadvantage.
Driver’s License Exams
Driver’s license eye exams can be performed in our practice and brought to the Department of Motor Vehicles at a later time.