See for your Health

Posted by: Eye Health Northwest in General Eye Health on April 2, 2012

Article courtesy Women’s Health Magazine

The eyes are more than windows to your soul—they’re also a good place to look for signs of trouble brewing in your body. Make sure to regularly see your eye doctor!
Even if you can boast 20/20, you should pay a visit to an eye-care specialist: “The eyes are one place in the body through which we can actually see veins and arteries firsthand, with no surgery or cameras,” says Shantan Reddy, M.D., an ophthalmologist and retinal specialist at New York University Langone Medical Center. That’s why an eye doctor may be the first to detect a serious health problem such as diabetes or high blood pressure. One example: Sixty-five percent of the time, eye doctors can spot signs of a patient’s high cholesterol before any other health-care provider can (the condition shows up as yellowish plaques within the retinal blood vessels). Behold, surprising health cues your eyes give away.

Eye Cue
Silver-or copper-colored arteries

Red Flag For…
High blood pressure
More than 20 percent of people with high blood pressure don’t know they have it—a problem that could be solved if everyone visited their eye doctor more often. “We can see hypertension through the eyes because it gives retinal arteries a silver or copper hue that we call copper wiring,” says Reddy. If left untreated, the condition can cause blood vessels in the retina and throughout the body to harden, increasing the risk for heart attack or stroke.

Eye Cue
A mole on the eye’s inner layer

Red Flag For…
Melanoma
Sunlight can wreak havoc on more than your skin—it may increase the risk of developing cancer inside the eyeball. “The cancer can look like little raised surfaces or moles in the pigment layer of the retina,” says ophthalmologist Sophie J. Bakri, M.D., of the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. Diagnosing an eye melanoma early is crucial, she says; it often has no other symptoms and can quickly metastasize to surrounding tissues.

Eye Cue
Leaky blood vessels

Red Flag For…
Diabetes
High blood sugar can clog or damage retinal blood vessels over time, rendering them weak and porous. Eye doctors can often spot the seepage or the new, abnormal blood vessels that sprout up to replace faulty ones. Indeed, diabetes takes a big toll on the eyes in general and can lead to blindness in serious cases.

Eye Cue
Inflammation

Red Flag For…
Autoimmune disease
Autoimmune conditions can cause the body to attack healthy cells and tissues (including those within the eyes), leading to inflammation. The process can lead to “If we see inflammation inside swollen ocular surface blood the eye, 30 to 50 percent of vessels and red, itchy, watery the time that patient will have some sort of undiagnosed autoimmune disease, like lupus or rheumatoid arthritis,” says Bakri. Another related symptom? Severely dry eyes, the result of compromised tear glands.

Eye Cue
Interior blisters

Red Flag For…
CSR
It sounds gross, but you can get blisters inside your eyeballs. The condition, called central serous retinopathy (CSR), is typically caused by excessive mental or emotional stress, which can tax the body so much that the retina starts to leak blister-forming fluid. “Eye doctors used to know CSR as a disease of stressed men with type-A personalities, but an increasing number of women are being diagnosed,” says Bakri. The most common symptom is that patients may also have blurry vision or see wavy lines when trying to focus on a set point. In many cases, CSR can be alleviated by slashing stress levels; but if not, patients may be helped by laser treatment.

Eye Cue
Swollen blood vessels on the white portion of the eye

Red Flag For…
Allergies
Airborne allergens such as pollen, dust, and animal dander often affect the eyes. As a protective mechanism, your peepers secrete anti-inflammatory histamines and other natural chemicals—but not without side effects. The process can lead to swollen ocular surface blood vessels and red, itchy, watery eyes visible to you, your eye doctor, and everyone else. For a proper diagnosis, though, do see an M.D.
Visit us at https://www.ehnpc.com/login.php to schedule your next appointment on-line.

Article courtesy of Kristen Dold and Women’s Health Magazine


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9555 SW Barnes Rd.
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Portland, OR 97225
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5050 NE Hoyt St., #245
Portland, OR 97213
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5050 NE Hoyt St., Suite 445
Portland, OR 97213
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Portland, OR 97225
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10819 SE Stark St,
Portland, OR 97216
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Happy Valley, OR 97086
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Tigard OR 97224
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29250 SW Town Center Loop W
Wilsonville, OR 97070
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Portland, OR 97223
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12050 SE Stevens Rd.
Happy Valley, OR 97086
(971) 206-6100 see more

Our Locations

Aloha (OES)
18345 SW Alexander St,
Suite A
Aloha, OR 97003
(503) 642-2505 see more
Gresham
24601 SE Stark St.
Suite 245
Troutdale, OR 97060
(503) 255-2291 see more
Hillsboro
6111 NE Cornell Rd
Hillsboro, OR 97124
(503) 846-9400 see more
Lake Oswego (OES)
9 Monroe Parkway, Suite 160
Lake Oswego, OR 97035
(503) 636-2551 see more
Milwaukie
11086 SE Oak St
Milwaukie, OR 97222
(503) 656-4221 see more
Mt. Tabor
5935 SE Division St.
Portland, OR 97206
503 777-5546 see more
Newberg (OES)
2318 Portland Rd, Suite 300
Newberg, OR 97132
(503) 538-1341 see more
North Portland
3246 N. Lombard
Portland, OR 97217
(503) 285-1671 see more
Northwest Portland
1955 NW Northrup St
Portland, OR 97209
(503) 227-2020 see more
Oregon City
1306 Division St
Oregon City, OR 97045
(503) 656-4221 see more
Peterkort
9555 SW Barnes Rd.
#201 (2nd floor)
Portland, OR 97225
(503) 227-2020 see more
Providence
5050 NE Hoyt St., #245
Portland, OR 97213
(503) 255-2291 see more
Providence Portland (OES)
5050 NE Hoyt St., Suite 445
Portland, OR 97213
(503) 231-0166 see more
Providence St. Vincent (OES)
9135 SW Barnes Rd., Suite 961
Portland, OR 97225
(503) 292-0848 see more
Southeast Portland
10819 SE Stark St,
Portland, OR 97216
(503) 255-2291 see more
Sunnyside
12050 SE Stevens Rd, Suite 100
Happy Valley, OR 97086
(503) 783-3300 see more
Tigard
15298 SW Royalty Parkway
Tigard OR 97224
(503) 227-2020 see more
Wilsonville
29250 SW Town Center Loop W
Wilsonville, OR 97070
(503) 582-0000 see more
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Westside Surgery Center

13240 SW Pacific Hwy
Portland, OR 97223
(503) 639-6571 see more

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12050 SE Stevens Rd.
Happy Valley, OR 97086
(971) 206-6100 see more