How Common Is Diabetic Retinopathy?

Headquartered in Tucson, Arizona, Retina Associates provides eye care services, treating conditions affecting the retina and vitreous at the back of the eye. Under the leadership of Dr. Cameron Javid, one of the conditions that Retina Associates treats is diabetic retinopathy.

People with diabetes are at risk of developing diabetic retinopathy. This occurs when high blood sugar levels affect blood vessels in the retina, the light-sensitive tissue at the back of the eye. The blood vessels may swell and leak or close, stopping blood flow. Both of these events can rob a person of his or her vision.

Diabetic retinopathy is actually the number one cause of blindness among America’s working age population. At some point, one in every three people with diabetes will develop retinopathy. The Centers for Disease Control estimates that from 2010 to 2050, the number of Americans with the condition will almost double from 7.7 million to reach 14.6 million.

Diabetic retinopathy poses a particular risk to people’s vision, especially because it has no symptoms in its early stages. The symptoms that a person may notice when the disease progresses include blurry vision, spotty vision, loss of color vision, or loss of central vision. It is important for people with type 1 or type 2 diabetes to take extra precautions to reduce their risk of developing the condition. These precautions may include monitoring blood sugar levels according to the doctor’s instructions, quitting smoking, eating healthy foods, exercising often, and scheduling a comprehensive dilated eye exam every year.

Macular Pucker, Explained

The retinal specialists at Retina Associates in Tucson, Arizona, treat issues related to the eye’s retina and vitreous. Led by Dr. Cameron Javid, Retina Associates’ extensively trained ophthalmologists use the latest medical technology to diagnose and treat patients with eye conditions such as macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy, macular pucker and tumors.

Macular pucker is a condition that affects the macula, a small area in the central part of the retina. The macula helps to create clarity in a person’s central vision, which is vital when looking at faces or reading text. The macula normally lies flat against the eye’s back wall, but when a wrinkle or crease occurs, vision will appear blurred or wavy. This macular pucker can sometimes be observed or, in more serious cases, with a surgery called a vitrectomy. The most common cause of macular pucker is age, but it can also develop due to other eye problems, such as a detached retina or swelling in the area.

Radiation and Surgical Approaches for Treating Eye Melanomas

Based in Tucson, Arizona, Retina Associates is led by Dr. Cameron Javid and provides care for a wide range of ophthalmologic conditions. Maintaining the leading eye cancer program region-wide, Retina Associates is known for its expertise in treating patients living with melanoma of the eye.

When it comes to treating eye melanoma, the size and location of the cancer are two major factors in selecting the best treatment option. The first goal in treatment is to save the persons life as untreated eye melanoma can be fatal. The second goal is to save the eye, The third goal is to save the vision, Radiation such as Brachytherapy or proton beam radiation are typically first line treatment options. Occasionally if the eye melanoma is too large enucleation or eye removal may be required. Dr Javid is one of a handful of national investigators using the Aura laser to treat eye melanoma in a national clinal trial in 2020.

In rare situations where the cancer is to large or has caused complete vision loss, or is associated with severe pain, surgery with enucleation may be recommended. This involves removal of the eye, so it is best to visit a qualified ocular oncologist- retina specialist- ophthalmologist at the earliest possible moment once potential melanoma symptoms are experienced.







ELOVL2 Gene Expression Linked with Age-Related Eye Diseases

Located in Tucson, Arizona, Retina Associates serves the needs of patients requiring a wide range of eye care services. Led by Dr. Cameron Javid, the experienced Retina Associates team has an extensive understanding of the latest trends in medical technology and research regarding vision and eye health.

One recent University of California, San Diego mice model study brought focus to the Elongation of very long chain fatty acids protein 2 gene (ELOVL2) gene and its role in the eye’s aging process. The ELOVL2 gene has a critical role in producing long-chain omega-6 and omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids, which are essential to inflammation response and energy production, as well as ensuring cell membrane integrity.

The new study shows that ELOVL2 gene expression also regulates aging in the retina, and finds a molecular-level linkage between fatty acids that it regulates, such as DHA, and visual functions. DHA is known for its beneficial effects in the eye, including protection from oxidative, or bright-light, stress, and when present in the photoreceptors promotion of a healthy retina. It is also linked to improvements in conditions such as dry eyes, diabetic eye disease, and age-related macular (AMD) degeneration.

The research suggests that ELOVL2 is related to a number of conditions that emerge as people grow older, and that encouraging its expression may be a key to tackling age-related eye diseases.