Ryan Health is now offering COVID-19 Antibody testing. See story on our homepage.
News | Announcement

Focus On Eye Health With Martin Aviles, OD

January 2, 2020
Eye Health

Eye health is something we all take for granted. You might have perfect vision, or need glasses or contacts, but you probably give little consideration to your eyesight.

Ryan Health’s primary eye care specialists are here to ensure your eye health. Our staff conducts comprehensive eye exams, treats eye disease, and prescribes corrective lenses when necessary.

Annual eye exams are recommended for everyone over 40 years old. Every other year is generally fine for younger people. As with every other part of your body, regular checkups ensure potential problems are discovered early.

For instance, glaucoma is an eye disease that can cause you to lose your eyesight, slowly and over time. But because there are no symptoms, you won’t know you have it unless you have an eye exam.

January is National Glaucoma Awareness Month. It’s a good reminder not to take chances with your eyesight.

Glaucoma is treatable, but not reversible. Once you start losing your vision to glaucoma, you can never get it back. As the disease progresses, you’ll have blind spots in your side vision, ultimately moving into your central vision.

Glaucoma can be identified during a comprehensive eye exam. It is caused by pressure in the eye. You won’t feel the increased pressure if you have it, but the damage it can do is permanent.

Glaucoma is generally treatable before severe damage occurs. Treatment is simple — daily eye drops to lower the pressure in your eye. You must use the drops for the rest of your life to control the development of the disease. If the disease progresses there are other treatment options, from lasers all the way up to major surgery. Those cases are rare.

Age is a key factor with glaucoma. It generally begins to develop in your 50s. For reasons that are unknown, African Americans and Hispanics develop glaucoma about 10 years earlier, in their 40s.

There are several risk factors that raise the possibility of glaucoma, although none of these is a cause of glaucoma. They include:

  • African American, Hispanic or Asian heritage
  • Family history of glaucoma
  • High myopia (nearsightedness)
  • High blood pressure
  • Diabetes
  • History of eye trauma
  • Chronic steroid use (by mouth or eye drops)

You can schedule your eye exam at several of our centers — Ryan Health | West 97th Street, NENA, Women & Children’s, and Ryan Chelsea-Clinton.

To schedule an appointment, visit the MyCare Portal or call 212/749-1820.