New Survey: Global Views on Eyecare Reveal the Need for Better Education9:50 PM
Time for a report card on how eyecare practitioners worldwide are spreading the word about the importance of ocular health care. Unfortunately the results aren't stellar.
|NORMAL RETINAL FUNDUS: via topcon-medical.eu|
|DIABETIC RETINOPATHY: may be without vision changes|
and always painless
|GLAUCOMA: can be PERMANENTLY blinding,|
and painless. No vision changes until permanent
The survey also revealed that patients had MAJOR misconceptions about detecting ocular diseases. 39% of participants answered that they only need an ocular examination if they needed vision correction. 30% said that if their eye didn't hurt, then there couldn't be a serious health problem.
Let's clear that myth up. Ocular pain tells me that something is going on with the surface of the eye. There could be an abrasion or infection or anything damaging the ocular surface and triggering the corneal nerves. But true blinding diseases are typically NOT painful. The only exception that comes to mind is acute angle closure, which is quite rare. Blinding conditions are painless because they happen within the retinal layers and blood vessels, where no nerve endings exist to signal pain. Eye pain means something is affecting the surface of the eye, but the surface of the eye is much easier to treat. It is the back layers of the eye where neural tissue exists that causes permanent blindness when damaged. We are certainly not getting the word out about the importance of ocular health!
So I want to do my part as an optometrist and with this little blog to get the word out day by day. Care about your health; care about your eyes. You don't have to have vision insurance to get an ocular examination, so that is no excuse! Medical insurance is also accepted by eye care practitioners for a health examination of the eyes. Think of your eye exam like a yearly physical, except when you come for your eye exam we actually LOOK at blood vessels and brain tissue while you are sitting in the chair. How incredible is that?!