Connecticut LASIK Laser Cataract Eye Surgery Blog Doctor & Associates

Monday, June 29, 2015

Cataract Risk Increases with Body Mass Index (BMI)

High Body Mass Index (BMI) is an indicator of being overweight or obese and is a well known risk factor for common health problems including diabetes, cardiovascular diseases and orthopedic joint problems. The World Health Organization (WHO) defines a normal weight by a Body Mass Index (BMI) 18.5-25 kg/m2, excess body weight or being overweight as BMI of 25--30 kg/m2, and obesity as BMI of ≥30 kg/m2.



Cataract Risk and Body Mass Index (BMI)
In general, there is some controversy and disagreement as to whether a high BMI predisposes patients to a greater risk of developing cataracts. By conducting an extensive statistical review of studies and performing a careful Meta Analysis researchers found that being overweight or obese were significantly associated with an increased risk of cataracts, especially those called “posterior subcapsular cataracts” which typically cause the greatest vision decline. This relationship was independent of sex, alcohol intake, diabetes and hypertension.

If you or someone you know is concerned about cataracts and weight or body mass index (BMI) please share this information with them and ask them to call Doctor & Associates-203-227-4113, visit Doctor & Associates, Google+ or facebook.com/doctorandassociates to schedule an appointment.

Doctor & Associates is a leading Fairfield County Connecticut eye care practice with offices at 129 Kings Highway North, Westport, Connecticut 06880, 195 Danbury Road, Wilton, Connecticut 06897 and 148 East Avenue, Norwalk, Connecticut 06851.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Tips to Preserve Eye Health & Vision

Everyone can help preserve their eye health and vision by taking advantage of some tips and following some important guidelines. At Doctor & Associates we recommend the following important actions:

Have Regular Comprehensive Dilated Eye Exams
Making sure to schedule regular dilated eye health and vision exams-at intervals your eye doctor recommends- is the first step to maintaining eye health and good vision. Early detection, diagnosis and treatment when necessary allows us to find eye diseases, conditions and problems so that we can address them before they are sight threatening. Many eye diseases do not have early warning signs, but signs and symptoms can be identified during a comprehensive dilated eye exam.

Know Your Family History of Eye Problems
Many eye health and vision problems and eye diseases tend to run in families. This suggests that if an eye disease is present in any family member it may put you at greater risk of that eye problem. This is particularly the case for eye diseases such as glaucoma and age related macular degeneration (AMD). Stay abreast of the eye diseases and conditions as they exist in your family, AND BE SURE TO TELL US ABOUT THEM WHEN YOU COME IN FOR AN EYE EXAM.



Nutrition and Diet Affect Eye Health & Vision
Make sure to pay attention to what you eat and try to include a steady diet of foods high in important nutrients that support good vision, such as the following:
  • Vegetables: collard greens, bell peppers, broccoli, tomatoes and dark, leafy greens, such as kale and spinach
  • Nuts: sunflower seeds, almonds, hazelnuts and peanuts
  • Fruits: strawberries and blueberries
  • Omega-3 Fatty Acids: tuna, halibut and salmon
  • Beans: chickpeas, kidney beans and legumes

Watch Your Weight & Exercise
Being overweight exposes you to a greater risk of diabetes. In fact there is an epidemic of diabetes in the U.S. today. Diabetic eye problems include a greater risk of glaucoma, cataracts and sight threatening diabetic retinopathy. Exercise-even moderate amounts of daily exercise reduce your risk of developing MANY eye diseases and problems.

Wear Protective Eyewear
Eye injury prevention is relatively easy-if you wear the appropriate protective eyewear when taking part in sports or home activities that expose you to risk. It is estimated that some 90% of eye injuries can be prevented by taking a minute to review the need for protective eyeglasses before doing home projects, trimming branches or shrubs, using saws, tool or weed whackers-and on and on. In addition, when spending time outdoors or near the water, wear sunglasses designed to block out 99 to 100 percent of the sun’s UV-A and UV-B rays.

Be smart and be safe.

Stop Smoking
Not only does smoking cause a host of cardiovascular and systemic vascular problems, but smoking is now recognized as increasing the risk of cataracts, macular degeneration and, all of which could lead to vision loss. We also now know that if you do smoke, there is considerable benefit in stopping!

Avoid Computer Eyestrain
CRT or video display terminals used for computers are well known to expose you eye fatigue, headache and more troubling-dry eye problems. When working on the computer or using a smartphone or tablet, practice the 20-20-20 rule to reduce eyestrain-that is, every 20 minutes, look at something 20 feet away for about 20 seconds. If you have any sensation of dryness, grittiness or “something in your eyes”, use an eye surface lubricant or eye drop to replenish your tears.

If you or someone you know would like to know more about lifestyle choices for eye health and vision or needs to schedule an eye exam, please call Doctor & Associates-203-227-4113, visit Doctor & Associates, Google+ or facebook.com/doctorandassociates to schedule an appointment.

Doctor & Associates is a leading Fairfield County Connecticut eye care practice with offices at 129 Kings Highway North, Westport, Connecticut 06880, 195 Danbury Road, Wilton, Connecticut 06897 and 148 East Avenue, Norwalk, Connecticut 06851.

Monday, June 15, 2015

Kids’ Eye Exams: When to Have Them

Dr. Tineke Chan, M.D.
When to Have Kids’ Eye Exams
As both a parent of small kids and a pediatric ophthalmologist I am pretty sensitive to the need for parents to understand when to have their children’s eyes screened and checked for problems. In my daily schedule of patients for eye problems, parents ask me about when to have eye exams for kids all the time. The American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Academy of Ophthalmology recommend that your child's eyes be screened for problems at birth, by 6 months of age, at 3 to 4 years of age, at 5 years of age, and every following year. Getting your kids eyes checked and screened regularly is critical for finding any issues that should be caught and treated early. In most instances it may not actually be necessary for your child to have an exam with an eye doctor, as your pediatrician can do the initial screenings at the routine well child visits. However, for preemies or if there is any family history of childhood eye problems it’s probably a good idea to bring them in to see us, and we might recommend more frequent or more detailed exams

If you or someone you know has questions or concerns about childrens eye problems or needs a kids eye exam, please call Doctor & Associates-203-227-4113, visit Doctor & Associates, Google+ or facebook.com/doctorandassociates to schedule an appointment.

Doctor & Associates offices are located at 129 Kings Highway North, Westport, Connecticut 06880, 195 Danbury Road, Wilton, Connecticut 06897 and 148 East Avenue, Norwalk, Connecticut 06851.

Monday, June 8, 2015

Reduce Cataract Risk: Stop Smoking!

Smoking is a well recognized risk factor for cardiovascular disease, stroke, vascular disease in general, glaucoma and high blood pressure. But does smoking effect your risk of getting cataracts?

Research about Cataracts & Smoking
Researchers studying the risk of cataracts among smokers reported in JAMA Ophthalmology that stopping smoking decreases the risk of cataracts over time. The researchers followed a total of 44,371 men, 45 to 79 years old over a 10 year period and the participants filled out questionnaires on their smoking habits and lifestyles and were then matched with the Swedish National Day-Surgery Register and local records of cataract extraction.

The researchers found that smokers of more than 15 cigarettes a day had a 42% increased risk of cataract surgery compared with men who had never smoked. It also found that men who smoked an average of more than 15 cigarettes a day but had stopped smoking more than 20 years earlier had a 21% increased risk. Thus, they found a positive association between cigarette smoking and cataract surgery in men, with a significant increase of cataracts among smokers compared to those who never smoked. Also, stopping smoking was associated with a statistically significant decrease in risk with increasing time from stopping smoking. Even heavy smokers had some benefit from quitting smoking.

Further, a previous study from 2005 detailed the relationship between smoking cessation and cataract risk in women. In this study, they found that after cessation of smoking, cataract risk in women decreased with time. Women who smoked 6 to 10 cigarettes a day but had ceased smoking 10 years earlier, and women who smoked more than 10 cigarettes a day but had ceased smoking 20 years earlier were found to have a relative risk of cataracts not significantly different from women who had never smoked.

Smoking cessation seems to decrease the risk of cataract development and the need for cataract surgery with time, although the risk persists for decades. The higher the intensity of smoking, the longer it takes for the increased risk to decline. These findings emphasize the importance of early smoking cessation and, preferably, the avoidance of smoking altogether.

If you or someone you know has questions or concerns about cataract risk or needs a cataract evaluation, please call Doctor & Associates-203-227-4113, visit Doctor & Associates in Fairfield County, Google+ or facebook.com/doctorandassociates to schedule an appointment.

Doctor & Associates offices are located at 129 Kings Highway North, Westport, Connecticut 06880, 195 Danbury Road, Wilton, Connecticut 06897 and 148 East Avenue, Norwalk, Connecticut 06851.

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Cataract Risk Increased with High Dose Vitamins

Taking vitamins has always been hailed as just being a part of maintaining good overall health. What kind of vitamins? How much of certain vitamins vs. others? A question constantly being asked is, are vitamins good or bad for affecting your risk of developing cataracts?


A study reported in the American Journal of Epidemiology evaluated the risks and benefits of taking high dose supplements of vitamins C and E and low-dose multivitamins with the risk of developing age related cataract. The study looked at any associations of high-dose supplements of vitamins C and E and low dose multivitamins with the risk of age related cataract in a group of 31,120 men who ranged in age from 45–79 years of age. Their results suggest that the use of high dose-but not low dose-single vitamin C or E supplements may increase the risk of age-related cataract. The risk may be even higher among older men, corticosteroid users, and long-term users.

If you or someone you know takes high doses of vitamins or is concerned about their risk of cataracts please call Doctor & Associates-203-227-4113, visit Doctor & Associates, Google+ or facebook.com/doctorandassociates to schedule an appointment.

Doctor & Associates offices are located at 129 Kings Highway North, Westport, Connecticut 06880, 195 Danbury Road, Wilton, Connecticut 06897 and 148 East Avenue, Norwalk, Connecticut 06851.