Cataracts, Cause and Risk Factors

Shady Grove Opthalmology pic
Shady Grove Opthalmology
Image: shadygroveophthalmology.com

Dr. Anthony Roberts of Shady Grove Ophthalmology in Rockville, Maryland, has extensive experience in LASIK vision correction and photorefractive keratectomy (PRK), having performed more than 55,000 refractive procedures over his nearly two-decade career. At his practice, Dr. Anthony Roberts also administers treatments for cataracts.

Cataracts affect approximately 20.5 million people over the age of 40 and more than half the population of those 80 years old and up. The condition causes clouding of the lens, resulting in vision impairment, and develops from a buildup of protein that is compacted into the center of the lens as new lens cells form.

Cataracts can occur at any age. Babies can be born with the condition, known as congenital cataracts, because of an infection or injury caused while still in the womb. A traumatic injury to the eye or development of diabetes can also result in cataracts. Further, the condition can be brought on by smoking cigarettes, consuming mass quantities of alcohol, and/or living in polluted areas.

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.