The Devil is in the Details!

17 05 2012

Or in this case, in your cornea.

The cornea is the clear covering on the outside front of your eyes.  It has five layers of tissue, with the bottom most layer called the endothelium.  It is a barrier to keep the fluid inside your eye from leaking out and making the cornea swollen and cloudy.

The health of the endothelium is largely affected by the amount of oxygen it gets.  Trauma, inflammation, eye surgery and aging can also adversely affect the health of the cells in the endothelial layer.  If the cells in this layer become damaged, the cornea can swell and cloud up causing blurred vision and permanent blindess.  You are born with only a certain number of these endothelial cells that do not regrow.  You have to make them last as long as possible.

Contacts that do not allow the cornea to breathe enough,  wearing contacts overnight that are not highly permeable to oxygen and not discarding disposable contacts at the replacement times recommended can cause permanent damage to these endothelial cells.

Until recently, observing the endothelium of the cornea was tricky with a microscope and many times damage or disease was not easily observed until the later stages.   Now there is a new, powerful microscope commercially available that magnifies this layer 240X and allows eye doctors to see the individual cells of the endothelium.  Made by Konan Medical, the Cellchek specular microscope makes detailed viewing and analyzing the endothelial cell layer much easier.

This allows doctors to prevent future damage to the corneal endothelial cells by changing contact lens brands or schedules and using topical medications.   Patients needing cataract surgery can have extra precautions taken to help prevent further damage due to the surgery.

Now that we have this advanced technology in my practice, I will be able to more accurately assess all potential or current contact lens wearers for any damage to their corneal endothelium.  Also we will be able to better predict possible complications from cataract surgery or corneal refractive surgery.

Schedule an eye exam with us at 935-2020 and let us look at those hopefully not, devilish eyes!

Courtesy of Dumas Vision Source, PLLC and Dr Tory W. Moore, Optometric Glaucoma Specialist.    Serving the Dumas, Texas,  Moore County and upper Texas Panhandle area for 21 years.   Call (806) 935-2020 for appointment or visit our optical gallery without an appointment.  Connect on Twitter @eyedocdumas  and like our Facebook business page:  Dumas Vision Source You also can visit our website for more information.   Tory Moore, OD  – “A Hometown Eye Doctor You Know and Can Trust!”