Often patients experiencing eye pain come into our office to seek professional advice from Dr. Sharma. They’re smart to seek out their family eye doctor, because eye pain is not something to ignore. It could be a sign that something is seriously wrong. The body is so interconnected, simple eye pain can signal abnormalities, and not just with your eyes! We all know that someone who always says:
‘It’s not that serious it’ll go away on its on, I am not going to see the doc!”
This might even be you! Patients with eye pain may be experiencing a condition called optic neuritis. Characteristic symptoms of optic neuritis is a dull achy pain behind the eye which is made worse with eye movements; a decrease in vision; and a possible change in color vision. Visual symptoms usually return after twelve months. The reason these symptoms occur is because of inflammation of myelin which surrounds the optic nerve tissue, helping protect and insulate them. It is a crucial component for proper function of nerve impulses.
Your eyes are the windows to your soul, and the rest of your body!
Diagnosing Eye Pain
If you have visual changes and eye pain, your optometrist will perform specific tests to help diagnose optic neuritis. Some of the tests performed include:
- Visual acuity
- Color vision assessment
- Eye muscles function assessment
- Pupil reaction to light
- Blood test
Once these tests are completed, your family eye doctor will make a determination for the best course of treatment.
Treatment for Optic Neuritis
Generally, the inflammation subsides on its own and no treatment is needed. However, on occasion it is recommended a patient be treated through oral steroids depending on the severity of vision loss, and symptoms. An MRI may also be ordered to determine if there are any brain lesions, which may indicate multiple sclerosis (MS), an autoimmune disease. Often times optic neuritis is the first symptom of MS. Early diagnosis of MS is imperative to help prevent further vision loss and systemic nerve damage.
A Word of Advice…
Dr. Sharma stresses to his patients to not overlook eye pain, it could be something serious. The most effective treatment can only be administered if diseases are caught early. Another good reason to not skip on your regular eye exam. At Inner Harbour Optometry, our staff takes great steps in ensuring patients make their annual or bi-annual appointments because it could not only save a patient’s eye, but their life!
If you are experiencing eye pain and need more information, book an appointment with Dr. Sharma.
We love helping people see their very best!