Femtosecond Lasers – An Overview

A graduate of University of Maryland School of Medicine, Dr. Anthony Roberts joined Shady Grove Ophthalmology in 2002. Dr. Anthony Roberts utilizes Lasik, multifocal intraocular lenses, and femtosecond lasers to diagnose and treat various eye diseases.

Even as laser cataract surgeries become more advanced, physicians are pushing for greater efficiency and accuracy. Scientists have categorized lasers to better understand and describe their speeds. The femtosecond laser falls in the “ultra-fast” category of lasers; it emits optical pulses measured in femtoseconds, one of the fastest units of time available. For perspective, there are one quadrillion (1,000,000,000,000,000) femtoseconds in a single second.

More and more ophthalmologists are using femtosecond lasers for cataract surgeries, which require surgical incisions in the cornea. Femtosecond lasers offer greater accuracy and steadiness than incisions made by hand. This translates to lower risk and facilitates self-sealing of the incision, which reduces the risk of infection following cataract surgery.

Causes of Cataracts

An accomplished ophthalmologist and surgeon, Dr. Anthony Roberts has dedicated much of his career to the treatment of cataracts. Dr. Anthony Roberts has addressed multiple cataract cases through the use of lens replacement and laser technologies.

While often commonly considered a disease of old age, a cataract can develop at any time and from number of contributing factors. All cataracts are characterized by a reduction in the transparency of the eye’s lens, although different types of cataracts affect different parts of the lens. As common wisdom holds, a senile or age-related cataract stands out as the most common type. This variety of cataract typically affects the lens’ interior section, clinically known as the nucleus.

By contrast, congenital cataracts are present at birth. These may be caused by a maternal infection during gestation, a genetic condition, or a developmental disorder. Young children may also develop cataracts due to a childhood or inherited condition, such as dermatitis or hyperthyroidism. Some physicians refer to these as congenital cataracts, depending on the cause. Children of all ages, as well as adults, may also develop cataracts after an injury to the eye. Finally, patients of any age are susceptible to secondary cataracts. These stem from illnesses such as diabetes or may arise following exposure to radiation, steroid drugs, or ultraviolet light.

Multifocal Lenses – How They Work

Dr. Anthony Roberts earned his doctor of medicine from University of Maryland School of Medicine. Skilled in Lasik as well as other ophthalmological procedures, he joined Shady Grove Ophthalmology in 2002, where he continues to treat patients today. Dr. Anthony Roberts employs state-of-the-art advancements such as multifocal intraocular lenses to treat eye disease.

Anyone with reading glasses knows that taking glasses on and off just to read a dinner menu or e-mail is inconvenient. One of the most advanced lens treatments, multifocal intraocular lenses (or IOLs for short) are implants designed to help visually impaired patients see at varying distances using points of reference.

Bifocal lenses allow the patient to view near and distant objects by looking through two different parts of the lenses: the top to view faraway objects and the bottom to see closer objects. Patients who receive multifocal IOLs can look at any object, at any distance, and the IOL readjusts automatically. After conquering a slight learning curve, such as learning how far to hold magazines and books from the eyes for optimum viewing distance, patients can enjoy reading and driving without glasses.

Dr. Anthony Roberts: Risk Factors for Glaucoma

Dr. Anthony Roberts, LASIK specialist and founder of Shady Grove Ophthalmology, has conducted glaucoma testing on a broad range of patients. A member of the American Academy of Ophthalmology, Dr. Anthony Roberts remains committed to using the latest in diagnostic technology and procedures.

Caused by fluid buildup in the eyeball, glaucoma leads to increased pressure in the eye. Left untreated, this increased pressure can damage the optic nerve and cause permanent vision loss. To guard against this devastating result, ophthalmologists test for glaucoma at regular intervals as part of a patient’s complete eye exam. The doctor conducts these with increasing frequency as a patient ages.

A routine glaucoma check involves testing the pressure of the inner eye as well as the color and shape of the optic nerve. Neither procedure is invasive. Pressure checks, or tonometry, begin when the doctor numbs the eye with drops. Then, the doctor applies pressure to the eye with a small device or puff of pressurized air.

To examine the optic nerve, an ophthalmologist will apply a different kind of drop. These drops dilate the pupil to enable the doctor to look through the pupil more easily. When the drop has taken effect, the doctor looks inside the eye with a lighted device that magnifies the optic nerve. If the nerve appears unusual in any way, the ophthalmologist may order additional testing.

Dr. Anthony Roberts: How LASIK Eye Surgery Works

Operating from Shady Grove Ophthalmology in Rockville, Maryland, Dr. Anthony Roberts has performed more than 50,000 refractive procedures. He earned his MD from the University of Maryland’s School of Medicine.

LASIK, which stands for laser assisted in situ keratomileusis, is a procedure in which a surgeon uses a cutting device known as a microkeratome to create a hinged opening on the surface of the cornea. The surgeon removes tissue from the inner layer of the cornea with a laser and replaces the outer flap when finished. Some patients report a faint burning-hair smell as the laser eliminates tissue. The surgery often requires less than 30 minutes.

Following LASIK surgery, 80 percent of patients can see well enough to eliminate contact lenses or glasses from their day-to-day lives. While the surgery can be used to address myopia, hyperopia, astigmatism, and presbyopia, patients who experience the best LASIK results are those with low-grade myopia.

Dr. Anthony Roberts: Eye Movement Speed Reduced in People with Glaucoma

Since 2003, Dr. Anthony Roberts has served as the Chief of Ophthalmology at Shady Grove Ophthalmology in Rockville, Maryland. Dr. Anthony Roberts has performed over 55,000 refractive eye surgeries during his career, including Lasik surgery. He also treats many patients with severe eye diseases such as glaucoma.

New research from the Glaucoma Research Society of Canada suggests that people with glaucoma lose more than just their visual fields. In a recent study, scientists tracked the saccadic eye movements of people who suffer from glaucoma. (Saccadic eye movements occur when both eyes move together to scan the environment. They play an important role in reading, walking, and driving.) The researchers discovered that for all patients with glaucoma, even those in the very early stages of the disease, the saccadic eye movements were 15 percent slower than for the general population. This delay is similar to the one that occurs in people who are drunk, and explains why people with glaucoma have trouble reading, fall frequently, and are involved in car accidents, even when their visual fields are only mildly impaired.

Currently, a cure for glaucoma does not exist, but therapies can slow its progression. If a person experiences frequent falls, experiences a series of car accidents and near misses, or has trouble reading, he or she should schedule an appointment with a qualified ophthalmologist for further evaluation.

Dr. Anthony Roberts on Treating Macular Degeneration (part 2 of 2)

Dr. Anthony Roberts, a Washington-area ophthalmologist who runs Shady Grove Ophthalmology in Rockville, Maryland, answers questions about research on macular degeneration and treatments for the condition.

Once a person is diagnosed with macular degeneration, how do doctors treat the disease?

According to Dr. Roberts, there is no treatment to reverse dry macular degeneration, but some research suggests that increased intake of Vitamins A, C, and E as well as copper and zinc may slow the disease’s advance. Drugs and laser therapy can also halt further degeneration. In severe cases, lens implants may restore some clarity to a patient’s vision. Regular check-ups are important, so that people who suffer from dry macular degeneration can monitor the progression of the disease.

If you’re at risk for either variant, it’s important to see your eye doctor on a yearly basis.

Is there any hope that researchers will be able to cure macular degeneration?

According to Dr. Roberts, researchers continue to study the disease and its causes. Recently, scientists discovered 20 genes that can predict whether a person has macular degeneration, how advanced the disease is, and what variant is present. Scientists hope to target these genes to create a new generation of macular degeneration tests and treatments.