Optometry is the professional practice of eye examination for abnormalities and diseases of the eye and its surrounding structure, as well as visual acuity and perception. Optometrists, or doctors of optometry (O.D.s), are vision and eye care specialists who diagnose and treat disorders, diseases, and injuries of the entire visual system. Camp Bowie Optique Fort Worth eye care center specializes in eyeglasses and contact lenses for children and adults. We are located in the building of the Fort Worth Eye Associates office on Collinwood Avenue one-half block north of Camp Bowie Boulevard.
Fort Worth Eye Assocaite's optometrist Dr. Kacy D. Pate, is a medical professional who has a doctor of optometry (O.D.) degree and is afforded many of the same privileges given to other types of doctors. Training for an optometrist includes a four year undergraduate college degree and four years of professional education at an optometry school. Optometrists must be state licensed in order to treat patients and prescribe medications, and many complete a residency in an area in which they plan to specialize in.
Optometry Vision Care Services
Optometrists often work in conjunction with ophthalmologists to provide comprehensive eye care for their patients. An optometrist may diagnose an eye disease or detect an abnormality in the eye that requires a surgical procedure which would then be performed by an ophthalmologist.
If surgery is required for your eye condition, working together with your ophthalmologist, your optometrist will often assist with your post-operative care such as:
- Evaluating vision progression after cataract, glaucoma, or LASIK surgery
- Monitoring post-operative symptoms and identifying any complications
- Managing on-going glaucoma treatment after surgery
Other common optometry services that can be provided by an optometrist include:
- Eye examinations to test for nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism
- Determining depth and color perception
- Testing eye focus and coordination
- Prescribing eyeglasses and contact lenses
- Vision therapy
- Low-vision rehabilitation
- Testing for, diagnosing, and treating glaucoma
- Detection of health problems which affect the eyes, such as diabetes and high blood pressure
- Prescribing medication for eye diseases and vision problems
- Testing for and diagnosing cataracts, as well as pre- and post-operative care
- Diagnosing other eye conditions and diseases, such as macular degeneration, conjunctivitis (pinkeye), dry eye, blepharitis (eyelid inflammation), and diabetic retinopathy
- Post-operative LASIK care
- Removal of foreign bodies from the eye (do not attempt to remove yourself, as further eye injury can result)
- Treatment of eye injuries or trauma, such as corneal abrasion (scratched cornea)
Visiting the Optometrist
Visiting the optometrist will usually begin with a standard optometry vision screening. Results from your vision test will be analyzed and, if you have been tested previously, any change in your vision will be noted. You will also be checked for any symptoms of other eye conditions, such as glaucoma or cataracts. After your vision systems are tested, your optometrist will determine your need for corrective lenses. If eyeglasses or contact lenses are recommended, a prescription will be dispensed.
Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS)
Tell your doctor if you have symptoms of computer vision syndrome, such as:
- Blurred vision after working on the computer
- Dry eyes
Computer Vision Syndrome or Digital Eye Strain is an eye and vision-related disorder treated by fort Worth Eye Associates. The discomfort that occurs with CVS results from extended periods of using the computer, tablet, e-reader and cell phone use. Many individuals experience eye discomfort and vision problems when viewing digital screens. The level of discomfort appears to increase with the amount of digital screen use.
Special lenses which reduce blue light can be prescribed for you if your eyes are continually exposed to a computer or tablet screen. The opticians at Camp Bowie Optique, located conveniently in our office building, can professionally fit you with your new custom eyewear and work closely with the doctors at Fort Worth Eye Associates on a daily basis.
If an eye disease is detected, a detailed treatment plan will be designed for you which may include prescription eye drops or medication, eye muscle strengthening therapies, or a recommendation for surgery depending on your diagnosis.
Visual Screening to Detect Medical Conditions
Optometrists can also detect systemic medical conditions that may affect the eyes using the information they find during a visual screening. In this way, they provide an important primary care service to eye care patients. Optometrist often work together as a team with primary care physicians and other specialists when managing diseases that affect the eyes.
Diseases Detected by Eye Examinations in Optometry
Eye examinations during vision screening may detect other diseases in the body. In many cases, an ocular manifestation is one of the first symptoms of a systemic disease. Ocular manifestation of a systemic disease refers to any eye condition which occurs, directly or indirectly, due to a medical condition in another area of the body. Diseases which can affect vision or present ocular symptoms include:
- Diabetes: Patients may present with diabetic retinopathy (DR), the most common ocular diabetic condition, which results in abnormal color vision and reduction in contrast sensitivity. Weakened blood vessels caused by DR can leak into the retina, resulting in macular edema, a leading cause of blindness in adult diabetics.
- Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS): 70-80% of patients with HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus – the virus which causes AIDS) experience an eye disorder of some type. HIV can directly infect the eyes or cause retinal damage and loss of visual acuity.
- Hypertension: Hypertensive retinopathy (damage to the retina and its circulation) is one of the first signs of high blood pressure. Vascular narrowing can lead to retinal hemorrhages or retinal lipids (fatty deposits).
- Lyme disease: Disease caused by a tick bite that can result in optic nerve disease, conjunctivitis (pink eye), keratitis (inflamed cornea), uveitis (inflammation of the middle, pigmented layer of the eye) and other eye inflammatory problems.
- Inflammatory diseases, such as rheumatoid arthritis or systemic lupus erythematosus: Ocular inflammation often accompanies systemic inflammatory diseases.
- Tumors: Breast, lung and gastrointestinal cancers can metastasize to the eye before being diagnosed. Suprasellar tumors of the pituitary gland can cause vision loss and eye pain.
- Brain anomalies and tumors: Headaches and distorted vision are commonly experienced with any space occupying lesion. Brain tumors have vision distorting symptoms in approximately 50% of cases. Weakened blood vessels in the brain can cause abnormalities (Axenfeld-Rieger anomalies) and arterial retinal tortuosity (retinal twisting).
- Orbital or ocular tumors: Tumors, which are often congenital and may be benign or malignant, around the eye that affect vision and cause disfigurement.
Left untreated, some ocular manifestations can ultimately lead to blindness. Detection of these eye disorders is not only key to preserving vision, but can be extremely helpful in not only diagnosing other systemic diseases, but can be a useful tool in the ongoing monitoring of these conditions
At Fort Worth Eye Associates Optometry, our licensed therapeutic optometrist, Dr. Kacy Pate, regularly works with patients with diabetes, high blood pressure, as well as autoimmune disorders to treat eye conditions associated with their medical conditions. Dr. Pate works hand-in-hand with our ophthalmologists to provide superior care ranging from vision screenings to treating and providing a health management plan for all manners of eye diseases, as well as partnering with Camp Bowie Optique where our opticians offer excellence in fitting, repairing, and adjusting eyewear to meet the individual needs of every patient.