Tag Archives: ipoh opthalmologist

Eye Health – Glaucoma (Final Part)

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Dr S S Gill, Consultant Ophthalmologist, Hospital Fatimah Ipoh
Dr S S Gill, Consultant Ophthalmologist

In conjunction with World Glaucoma  Awareness, Ipoh Echo talks to Consultant Eye Surgeon Dr. S.S. Gill about this “silent thief of sight” – Final Part.

Glaucoma as you know has been nicknamed the “silent thief of sight”. This disease results in permanent irreversible blindness in the affected eye(s) that often goes without symptoms until the loss of vision is significant or the patient is blind. Early diagnosis means early treatment and therefore prevention of major loss of vision.

Glaucoma treatment may either involve eye drops instillation, pills, laser surgery, conventional surgery or a combination of these methods. The ultimate goal of treatment is to prevent optic nerve damage that results in irreversible loss of vision. Taking medications regularly as prescribed, is crucial to prevent vision-threatening nerve damage.

1. Eyedrops

The first line of treatment is often instillation of special eye drops that can reduce eye pressure. These will have to be instilled daily without fail in order to prevent loss of vision. Sometimes doctors will prescribe a combination of eye drops in order to lower the eye pressure adequately. There are many patients on eyedrops for years who have their vision preserved. Always be diligent with the instillation of any eyedrops that have been prescribed for glaucoma.

ipoh echo issue 143,  Dr. S.S. Gill, glaucoma, ipoh opthalmologist2. Oral Medication

Oral medication usually has quite a few side effects that may include skin rash, tingling in the hands or feet, nausea or upset stomach, kidney stone formation, altered taste (especially with carbonated beverages), weight loss, fatigue, and decreased energy. So, they are generally not used long term. They are generally only used to treat acute eye pressure increase.

ipoh echo issue 143, Dr. S.S. Gill, glaucoma, ipoh opthalmologist3. Laser Surgery

Depending on the condition of your eyes, laser treatment may be recommended if suitable. Laser surgery is performed on an outpatient basis in an eye doctor’s office or clinic after the eye has been numbed. A laser is directed toward the trabecular meshwork which is the area that drains the fluid (aqueous humor) from the eye into the blood. There are many kinds of laser surgery and they are usually recommended based on the type of glaucoma.

ipoh echo issue 143, Dr. S.S. Gill, glaucoma, ipoh opthalmologist4. Surgery

Surgery is usually recommended if the eye pressure cannot be controlled by all of the above treatments. Surgery involves creating means for the eye fluid (aqueous humor) to drain in order to relieve the eye pressure.

As a last resort, a special glaucoma drainage device may have to be implanted in the eye in order to relieve the eye pressure.

In summary, get an eye examination done annually. If you are diagnosed with glaucoma, it does not mean you will go blind. It only means that you will need to be treated intensively in order to prevent you from going blind.

For more information, contact Gill Eye Specialist Centre at  05-5455582, email: gilleyecentre@dr.com or visit www.fatimah.com.my.

Stye in your Eye

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Dr. S.S. Gill, Consultant Ophthalmologist

In our continuing series on Eye Health, Consultant Eye Surgeon Dr. S.S. Gill talks to us about STYE.

A stye is an infection of the hair follicle of an eyelash. It is also called hordeolum. It presents as a small painful lump on the outside (external hordeolum) or on the inside (internal hordeolum) of the eyelid. It basically looks like a pimple on the eyelid (called “ketumbit” in Malay).

A stye is not harmful to vision but does cause a discomfort to the eye. It can occur at any age but most often affects infants and children. It is most often caused by bacteria called staphylococcus. This bacterium is found in high concentrations within the nose and therefore is easily transferred to the eyelids by our unwashed fingers!

When an eyelash follicle gets infected with the bacteria, it swells up and becomes filled with pus. The eyelash follicle then looks like it has a pimple on the eyelid becoming red and painful.

Symptoms of stye may include the following:

    * Diffused redness in the affected area of the eyelid.

    * Burning and droopiness of the affected eyelid is another common symptom.

    * Later, a pimple-like lump appearing on the eyelid.

    * A yellow point at the centre of the red lump appears when it fills up with pus.

    * Occasional discomfort during blinking of the eye.

    * Tearing or watering of the eye, and increased sensitivity to light occasionally.

    * Later, crusting on the eyelashes if the stye ruptures and pus is expelled out.

What causes a stye?

Pretty much everyone has the potential to develop a stye without outside contamination since it is most often caused by bacteria in the nose. This bacteria is transferred easily to the eye when you rub first your nose, then your eye.

However, people with certain chronic conditions like diabetes mellitus, chronic skin conditions (seborrhoea) and chronic illnesses that reduce immunity are more prone to developing styes than the general population.

How are styes treated?

Most styes heal on their own within a few days. Warm compresses applied for 10 to 15 minutes, three or four times a day, over the course of several days helps to encourage resolution. It relieves the pain and helps “ripen” the stye very much like a pimple. The stye usually ruptures to drain the pus collection and finally heals.

Remember never to “pop” a stye like a pimple; but always allow it to rupture on its own. The internal type of stye (that appears inside the eyelid) may sometimes not heal and therefore require drainage of the pus by your eye practitioner. Your doctor may prescribe an antibiotic eye ointment along with oral antibiotics depending on how severe it is. If you suspect you have a stye that keeps on worsening, seek medical attention.

More on treatment and prevention of a stye in the next issue.

For more information, contact Gill Eye Specialist Centre at 05-5455582, email: gilleyecentre@dr.com or visit www.fatimah.com.my.

Nutrition for Your Eyes

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Dr. S.S. Gill

In our series on Eye Health, Consultant Eye Surgeon Dr. S.S. Gill talks to us about how nutrition plays a part in eye health.

The question many people ask Ophthalmologists is whether nutrition and vitamins play a part in maintaining healthy eyes. The answer in a nutshell is, “Yes, your eyes reflect what you eat!” Good nutrition is important for eye health and of course for general health too. Good nutrition helps to nourish our eyes, protect against eye infections and allows the eyes to function properly.

Diets Rich in Vitamins

A typical example of how nutrition plays a vital part in the health of our eyes is a childhood condition leading to blindness called xerophthalmia. This condition is due to a lack of vitamin A in the diet and is commonly seen in developing countries.

Certain foods are essential for good eye health. They maintain healthy cells in the eye which is so essential for proper function. Amongst the more important ones are the anti-oxidant vitamins A, C and E. These vitamins can be found in many different sources of fruit and vegetables such as oranges, grapefruit, tomatoes, carrots and green leafy vegetables.

Oxidative Stress

Our bodies constantly react with the oxygen in our environment. Due to this activity, humans produce tiny molecules called free radicals. These free radicals affect our cells, sometimes damaging them. This is called oxidative stress and it plays a role in how macular degeneration develops.

Carotenoids – Lutein & Zeaxanthin

Studies have shown that two types of carotenoids called Lutein and Zeaxanthin are essential for eye health. In the Age Related Eye Disease Study (AREDS) of 4,757 patients, it showed that those who had a higher intake of Lutein with Zeaxanthin in their diet had less incidence of Age-related Macular Degeneration (AMD).

These carotenoids keep the eyes safe from oxidative stress especially from the exposure to blue light (high energy photons). Lutein has also been shown to improve retinal sensitivity. Lutein and zeaxanthin can be found naturally in vegetables, fruits, yellow peppers, mango, bilberries, spinach and broccoli.

A Balanced Diet

A good balanced diet that includes sufficient fresh fruits and vegetables is therefore essential. However, if you feel that your diet lacks adequate vitamins and minerals, you might want to consider taking a supplement for general and eye health when:

* your diet does not include enough fresh fruit and vegetables .

* it is hard to obtain or prepare fresh fruit and vegetables.

* you have been told to take a vitamin supplement by your eye doctor.

Key Points to Remember

In summary, to maintain good eye health, you should:

* Eat a good, balanced diet with lots of fresh fruit and vegetables.

* Take multivitamin supplements with carotenoids if needed.

* Stop smoking – cigarette smoke contains large amounts of free radicals.

* Protect your eyes from sunlight. Use good quality sunglasses. Ones that filter off harmful ultraviolet rays and lenses that are polarised are best.

* Get your eyes tested every 2 years if you are generally healthy but more often if you have medical problems like diabetes mellitus.

For more information, contact Gill Eye Specialist Centre at 05-5455582, email: gilleyecentre@dr.com or visit www.fatimah.com.my.