Patient FAQ’s2018-09-29T22:34:54+00:00


How do I schedule an exam?2018-09-29T22:34:03+00:00

Simply contact the staff of your facility. We work with the facility to schedule examination days, usually several weeks in advance. If there is an urgent issue, please contact the staff of the facility and they will notify us. We provide followup care as is medically indicated.

What sorts of eye condition do you check for?2018-09-29T22:34:03+00:00

We perform a dilated, comprehensive examination on all our patients. Dilation is used to allow our doctors to see much more of the inside of the eye. We check for and manage cataracts, glaucoma, macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy, dry eyes, infections and many other conditions.

Can you perform an exam on someone who can’t speak or answer questions?2018-09-29T22:34:03+00:00

With our specialized equipment and training in dealing with the elderly population, we can perform a complete exam, including testing for glasses, without any input from the patient. We can even examine a patient in their bed.

Can you provide glasses?2018-09-29T22:34:03+00:00

We carry a selection of frames and can provide eyewear at very reasonable rates. If you would like to purchase glasses elsewhere, we will provide you with a prescription. We can also adjust and perform minor repairs to glasses on site, saving you time and trouble.

How much does an eye exam cost?2018-09-29T22:34:25+00:00

Insurance covers the cost of medical eye care. We bill Medicare, Medicaid and private insurance such as Blue Cross Blue Shield, United Health Care and CommunityCare, as well as many others. We also bill supplemental plans so there is no out of pocket cost for most patients. And we do not charge any extra to come to you for the exam.

Dry Eyes2018-09-29T22:34:03+00:00

Dry eyes come from not making enough tears or from an abnormal quality of tears. Tears lubricate your eyes and help keep them healthy. Chronic dryness can damage the eyes, especially the cornea.

Risk Factors

  • Dry eyes, according to the American Optometric Association, is a common condition in the elderly and can interfere with vision but rarely cause blindness. In addition to aging other risk factors for dry eyes include:
  • Environmental factors such as wind, sun, dryness, heat, cold, smoke
  • Medicines such as antihistamines, blood pressure medicines and antidepressants
  • Medical conditions such as thyroid disease, diabetes, arthritis, Sjogren’s syndrome and other autoimmune diseases

Symptoms and Signs

  • Symptoms of dry eyes can occur in both eyes and include:
  • Blurred and decreased vision
  • Burning
  • Itching
  • Grittiness
  • Irritation
  • Pain
  • Excess tearing to try to compensate
  • Inflammation and redness
  • Chronic dry eyes can lead to ulcers or scarring of the cornea and the lining of the eyelids and eye (conjunctiva).

Presbyopia is a problem of the natural aging of the lens of the eye, unrelated to any specific disease. The lens becomes more rigid and you gradually lose your ability to see close or small objects. This eye problem is increasingly more common after age 40, according to the American Academy of Ophthalmology.

Symptoms and Signs

  • Presbyopia may make you have:
  • Difficulty with seeing to read a book , threading a needle, sewing, cooking, or reading road signs or the dashboard instruments in your car
  • Light and glare sensitivity
  • Loss of side vision and depth perception
  • Without corrective glasses you might find yourself holding a book and other objects at arms length to see them.
Hypertensive Retinopathy2018-09-29T22:34:03+00:00

Hypertensive retinopathy is a disease of the retina caused by high blood pressure. The higher the pressure the more the potential for damage to small blood vessels in the eye and in turn the retina and the macula. The blood vessel changes in the retina reflect the effect of high blood pressure on other blood vessels in the body and can become narrow or blocked.

Risk Factors
According to the American Academy of Ophthalmology the severity of hypertensive retinopathy depends the duration of the high blood pressure. The eye changes will therefore be more advanced in seniors with long-standing, poorly-treated high blood pressure. Other factors that can worsen the problem include:

  • Smoking
  • Diabetes
  • High cholesterol
Diabetic Retinopathy2018-09-12T11:10:56+00:00

Diabetic Retinopathy is caused by the effects of high blood sugar which leads to abnormalities in the small blood vessels (capillaries) of the retina. Vision problems worsen as the blood vessel disease advances and new blood vessels grow (proliferate). The disease can start in younger people and advance with age. It can also be present at the time of the initial diagnosis of diabetes in seniors.

Risk Factors
The NEI states that 40-45% of diabetics have some degree of retinopathy. Pregnant women are particularly at risk for worsening disease. Diabetic retinopathy affects type 1 and type 2 diabetics and is a common cause of blindness in middle-aged Americans, according to the NEI. The disease is more common in African Americans and can be more common and severe in diabetics with:

  • Long-standing diabetes
  • Diabetic kidney disease
  • Abnormal cholesterol and triglycerides
  • High blood pressure
  • Smoking

Glaucoma is a group of disorders which lead to damage of the optic nerve and diminished vision. High pressure inside the eye damages the optic nerve which is how light signals get to your brain so you can see. It usually involves both eyes, but it can affect just one.

Risk Factors
The NEI states that glaucoma is a common cause of blindness in the United States, especially for individuals over the age of 60. It is more common in African Americans after age 40 and Mexican Americans after age 60. Risk factors for glaucoma include:

  • Age
  • Race
  • Family history
  • Hypertension
  • Diabetes
  • Eye injury
  • Eye infection or inflammation

Cataracts cause whitening or cloudiness on the lens of the eye. This prevents light from getting through to the retina. Cataracts start out small and grow slowly. They can affect one or both eyes.

Risk Factors
Cataracts can begin between age 40-50 but are more common, and worsen vision after age 60, according to the NEI. By age 80 at least 50% of Americans over age 80 have them, according to the National Institute of Health statistics.
Risk factors for cataracts include:

  • Age
  • Family history
  • Diabetes
  • Smoking
  • Alcohol
  • Steroid use
  • Eye trauma
  • Radiation exposure
  • Exposure to ultraviolet rays from the sun or tanning beds
  • Symptoms
  • Symptoms of cataracts include:
Age-Related Macular Degeneration2018-09-12T11:10:15+00:00

Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a disease of aging of the macula of the retina, a small spot in the middle of the retina in the back of the eye you need for sharp vision. It doesn’t often lead to complete blindness, however, as the blurred or blank area of your vision gets bigger, your ability to see deteriorates.

Risk Factors
AMD can affect one or both eyes. According to the National Eye Institute (NEI) of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), it is a common eye disease in people over age 50 but is more likely to occur after age 60. The risk factors for AMD include:
Caucasian race

  • Family history of AMD
  • Smoking
  • High blood pressure
  • High cholesterol