Cataract

A cataract is a clouding of the eye's lens. When we look at something, light rays travel into our eye through the pupil and are focused through the lens onto the retina, a layer of light-sensitive cells at the back of the eye. The lens must be clear in order to focus light properly onto the retina. If the lens has become cloudy, this is called a cataract.  

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Age Related Macular Degeneration

Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a deterioration or breakdown of the eye's macula. The macula is a small area in the retina — the light-sensitive tissue lining the back of the eye. The macula is the part of the retina that is responsible for your central vision, allowing you to see fine details clearly.

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Glaucoma

Glaucoma is a disease that damages the eye’s optic nerve. The optic nerve is connected to the retina — a layer of light-sensitive tissue lining the back of the eye — and is made up of many nerve fibers, like an electric cable is made up of many wires. It is the optic nerve that sends signals from your retina to your brain, where these signals are interpreted as the images you see.

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Diabetic Retinopathy

Diabetic retinopathy, the most common diabetic eye disease, occurs when blood vessels in the retina change. Sometimes these vessels swell and leak fluid or even close off completely. In other cases, abnormal new blood vessels grow on the surface of the retina. For more information about Diabetic Retinopathy visit http://www.geteyesmart.org/eyesmart/diseases/diabetic-retinopathy.cfm

Dry Eye

When you blink, a film of tears spreads over the eye, making the surface of the eye smooth and clear. Without this tear film, good vision would not be possible. Sometimes people don't produce enough tears or the right quality of tears to keep their eyes healthy and comfortable. This condition is known as dry eye.

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Presbyopia

Presbyopia (which literally means "aging eye") is an age-related eye condition that makes it more difficult to see very close. When you are young, the lens in your eye is soft and flexible. The lens of the eye changes its shape easily, allowing you to focus on objects both close and far away. After the age of 40, the lens becomes more rigid. Because the lens can’t change shape as easily as it once did, it is more difficult to read at close range. This normal condition is called presbyopia.

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Myopia

Myopia, or nearsightedness, is a refractive error, which means that the eye does not bend or refract light properly to a single focus to see images clearly. In myopia, close objects look clear but distant objects appear blurred. Myopia is a common condition that affects an estimated 25 percent of Americans. It is an eye focusing disorder, not an eye disease. For more information about Myopia visit http://www.geteyesmart.org/eyesmart/diseases/myopia.cfm

More Diseases and Conditions

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www.eyesmart.org is a patient resource sponsored by the American Academy of Ophthalmology.