Your eyes are intimately connected to your body's health. The retina, or the film of your eye, receive more blood flow per unit mass then any other organ in your body. Your retina takes every photon of light and converts it via a chemical reaction to an electrical impulse. This impulse is carried to the optic nerve and then the brain to form the image you see. Then the retinal photoreceptors have to regenerate the photoreactive chemical (in real time) to accept the next photon of light. And there are no rest breaks involved here, when someone walks in front of you, do you see a frame of an image then another frame while the retinal cells regenerate? No, you see a continuous image. Imagine the amount of energy that is required.
This process takes an enormous amount of energy, and energy in your body is acquired from oxygen and ATP (think of it as a form of sugar). The energy is supplied via a network of blood vessels that is massive and is derived from a branch off of one of the biggest pipelines in your body, the carotid artery.
Not only does this massive blood network supply energy to the retina for processing light, but it acts as a cooling system. With the retina producing so much work, heat is a by-product. And if the heat were not removed efficiently then problems develop. No different than if your radiator in your car stopped working, your engine would overheat. The retina would malfunction and eventually be destroyed if not for the massive capillary system to carry heat away at an accelerated rate.
So you can see how important your hemodynamic system is to the retina. Diseases that affect your body's ability to provide the necessary blood flow to the eye will compromise your vision.
Diseases such as diabetes, hypertension, hypercholesterolemia, cardiac disease, blood clotting abnormalities, immune disorders (lupus, Crohn's disease, rheumatoid arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis), liver disease. Evenmedications you take for other problems you may have, can affect your vision. There are plenty of disclosures on television ads for pharmaceuticals that warn you of ocular effects of their medications.
By coordinating your health issues with your primary care doctor and understanding that over 70% of all diseases that affect your body can be seen to affect the eye, we can help not only diagnose diseases by analyzing your retina before you have bodily symptoms but monitor the effects your treatments for those diseases are having on a microvascular level using the most advanced digital imaging equipment. You will see imaging that you rarely have insight to and have it explained to you in detail so you become knowledgeable about your greatest treasures, your vision and body.
My colleagues, staff and myself in office, all want you to have the best vision and overall health possible. It is our goal to help you understand your body and medical processes that affect your day to day health. Both through prevention and therapy.