HEALTH

Ophthalmic Health Comes First

Detection of eye disease is the primary function of an optometrist. Having the latest equipment allows in depth examination of your eye health. We normally refer patients to the Hospital Eye Service if an abnormality is detected requiring further investigation. However, private referrals are also possible to The Edinburgh Clinic and Shawfair Spire hospitals. It is to the benefit of everyone in Scotland that the sight test is NHS funded and means that eye care is accessible to all, regardless of affordability.

 

EMERGENCY CARE

Taking Care of You

We have an emergency appointment set aside daily, so to make sure we can accommodate you. We will investigate urgently any signs and symptoms you may be having that constitute an emergency. We can refer any serious problem directly to the Hospital Eye Service, Private Hospital or to your GP for further evaluation and treatment.

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EYE HEALTH FAQS

Answers To Your Questions

 

WHERE SHOULD I GO IF I HAVE AN EYE PROBLEM?

In Scotland, the advice now is to present to an optometrist as first port of call for any eye problem. We have the necessary equipment to evaluate your presenting signs and symptoms accurately. We can then liaise with your GP, pharmacist or the Hospital Eye Service if indicated. Many eye problems can be managed by an optometrist. However, there are many more needing management in secondary care. Any eye problem should be investigated as soon as possible.

CAN I GET A SAME-DAY APPOINTMENT?

If you have an ocular emergency that is deemed serious enough to be seen same day, we will find time to see you. We do have an emergency appointment set aside daily for such cases. For routine appointments, we are usually booked a week in advance, but sometimes there are cancellations.

IS THERE A COST FOR THE SIGHT TEST?

NHS Scotland funds sight tests in Scotland at determined intervals, whether in the practice or at home. If presenting between these intervals and there is an eye problem needing examined, this is also covered. Outside of this a private test carries a fee, as do other tests not covered by the NHS. Contact lenses are private, and the NHS doesn't fund these examinations.

HOW LONG ARE THE SIGHT TEST APPOINTMENTS?

For a primary eye test, we book 45 minute appointments. This means that you aren't rushed and we have the time to investigate all of your symptoms thoroughly. It also means we have time to discuss your findings, give you advice and answer any questions that you may have about your eye health and glasses.

DOES THE OPTICIAN DO ALL OF THE TESTS??

Yes. Jonathan will conduct all of the tests himself without delegation. We feel this gives a real-time snapshot of your eye health and reduces the risk of missing any important details. After evaluating all of the information at hand, he can then comprehensively discuss your eye health with you.

WHAT IS AN OCT?

An OCT (Optical Coherence Tomographer) is specialised equipment that takes a cross-sectional scan of the posterior eye. It can pick up early signs of eye disease, such as Macular Degeneration, Glaucoma, Macular Hole, Vitreo-macular Traction etc. This is beneficial when tailoring advice to people on their eyes and referral to secondary care.

UV LIGHT AND THE EYES

Chronic exposure to UV light is associated with many eye conditions ( see below)

It is well know what damage UV light can do to the skin. It is common place to use sun lotion to protect against this. What is less known, is that UV light can also cause damage to the eye and surrounding area. With their larger pupils, clearer crystalline lens and more sensitive tissue, children are more susceptible to UV light. Damage that may be done at an early age does not become apparent until later in life. Our children's glasses are made with UV protected lenses. Ask about UV protection in your ophthalmic and contact lenses.

BASAL CELL CARCINOMA

This is the most common malignant eyelid tumour worldwide. It is a slow growing cancerous growth which almost never metastasises. Treatment is removal by surgical excision. Any lumps or bumps should be investigated carefully and timely.

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PTERYGIUM

This is a growth that invades the cornea. It is slow growing and doesn't always progress very far. It is not usually a problem unless it crosses the cornea so far as to affect vision. It can then be surgically removed by an ophthalmologist.

CATARACT

This is probably the most common eye problem in the UK. It is a more prevalent condition in an ageing population. Vision gradually becomes hazy and deteriorates. After vision has decreased by a certain amount, surgery to remove the lens can be indicated. An implant is put in its place, restoring the vision that was affected due to the cataract. However, other ocular pathology can temper the improvement in vision a little.

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OTHER VARIOUS EYE CONDITIONS

DIABETIC RETINOPATHY

Diabetic Retinopathy is one of the leading causes of blindness in the UK. Damage is done to the back of the eye, that can in time cause deterioration in vision. There is a screening service in Scotland that photographs eyes to check for early signs that may need further investigation. Diabetes can can changes in your vision, especially when undiagnosed. Diabetics benefit from regular eye tests, usually on an annual basis.

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AGE-RELATED MACULAR DEGENERATION (AMD)

This is a very common condition of the macula. It primarily affects your central vision and can come in two types - Dry and Wet. Dry AMD develops over a longer period of time than Wet AMD. The Wet type affects vision quickly and deeply and needs urgent referral. Injections are the usual treatment for the Wet type. Diet and supplements are two important factors in people with the Dry type.

FUCH'S ENDOTHELIAL DYSTROPHY

Fuch's is a condition involving the posterior layer of the cornea. It usually develops later in life and has a pretty strong familial genetic link. Damage to this layer breaks down the delicate equilibrium of water in the cornea, causing oedema of the central part of the cornea. This presents as blurring first thing in the morning, gradually clearing during the day. Progression of Fuch's is variable and surgery is sometimes indicated.

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