What Your Eyes Say About Your Health
Did you know that your eyes can say a lot about your health? During a comprehensive eye exam at Elmquist Eye Group, your doctor will be able to detect signs of eye conditions like glaucoma or cataracts, as well as some serious medical problems like thyroid conditions or diabetes.
Elmquist Eye Group has served thousands of patients in Cape Coral, Fort Myers, and throughout Southwest Florida since 1992. E. Trevor Elmquist, DO, his partner Kate Wagner, OD, and his associates Nina Burt, OD and Sarah Eccles-Brown, MD, provide everyone in the family with personalized care, from children to seniors.
Dr. Elmquist is a board certified ophthalmologist who specializes in general ophthalmology and refractive cataract surgery. He has been selected year after year as one of America’s Top Doctors by Castle Connolly Medical Ltd. based on the nominations of his peers.
Dr. Eccles-Brown is a board certified ophthalmologist who has additional training and certification in refractive surgery. Drs. Wagner and Burt are highly skilled board certified optometrists.
Your Eyes are Windows to Your Health
Don’t wait until you experience vision problems to make that all-important appointment for an eye exam. Your eye doctor may discover health issues you may be unaware of, including:
- Diabetes— One of every three people with diabetes does not know they have the disease. By looking at the blood vessels in the retina of your eyes, your eye doctor may be the first to detect diabetes in its early stages and help you prevent damage to your eyesight with early treatment and management.
- Hypertension— Your eye doctor will be able to detect hypertension or high blood pressure by looking at the blood vessels in the eye. Without treatment, hypertension can lead to blurred vision, damage to the optic nerve, glaucoma and vision loss, and may increase your risk for heart disease and strokes.
- High cholesterol— High cholesterol can cause blockages in the blood vessels, including those in the eyes. Eye doctors typically look for evidence of yellowish corneas or plaque in the blood vessels of the retina as telltale signs.
- Autoimmune disorders— If the eye doctor detects inflammation of the eye or optic nerve, it may be a sign of lupus, multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, or another autoimmune disorder. The impact of these diseases on your eyesight can be reduced with early detection and appropriate medications.
- Thyroid Conditions – An underactive or overactive thyroid can have a significant impact on your vision and general eye health. Your eye doctor can detect Graves’ disease and hyperthyroidism, which develop most often in women between the ages of 20 and 40.
- Liver Disease – If the white part of your eyes (the sclera) turns yellowish, it may indicate problems of the liver, gallbladder, or bile ducts, including hepatitis and cirrhosis. The yellowing is caused by a buildup of bilirubin, the by-product of old red blood cells that the liver is unable to process.
- Cancer— If your eye doctor notices signs of unusual changes in your eye, he or she may refer you to a specialist. A rare form of cancer called ocular melanoma can develop in the cells that make pigment in the eye. Early detection is the best way to keep your eyes and body healthy.
To find what your what your eyes say about your health, schedule an exam at Elmquist Eye Group by calling (239) 936-2020. Keeping your eyes healthy can have a great impact on your quality of life by tipping you off about medical conditions you might not even know you have.