Optical Conditions

Since 1986, Dr. Philip Paden and the team of eye care professionals at Paden Eye Care Center have been a trusted name in diagnosing and treating eye conditions. Our practice uses a range of advanced diagnostic and state-of-the-art techniques to find and detect eye abnormalities or illnesses before they become serious issues. We are proud to serve communities across Southern Oregon and Northern California.

We are dedicated to providing outstanding, highly personalized care for every patient. We coordinate your care with retinal surgeons, primary care doctors, optometrists, and other medical specialists to ensure you receive the most comprehensive treatment and outcomes.

We see and treat these common eye conditions:

Our Specialties Include:

Diabetic Retinopathy

For people with diabetes, the high levels of blood sugar or blood glucose can cause damage to their eyes. Diabetes can increase a person's risk for glaucoma and cause early development of cataracts. Its is also one of the leading causes of blindness and decreased vision.

One of the complications of diabetes is damage to small blood vessels throughout the body. In the eyes, the blood vessels around the retina are damaged, which can cause blood or fluid to leak into the retina or eye itself. The retina functions much like film in a camera: it receives light and transmits visual information to the brain. When the blood vessels in the retina are damaged due to diabetes, this is called Diabetic Retinopathy. There are two types of Diabetic Retinopathy: proliferative diabetic retinopathy (PDR) and background diabetic retinopathy (BDR).

BDR is the more common form of retinopathy. In this type, the leaking of the small blood vessels causes swelling in the macula and retina, and causes the formation of deposits called exudates. These cause the retina to malfunction, which can lead to decreased vision.

When abnormal blood vessels begin to grow in the surface of the retina, PDR is beginning. These vessels are very fragile and often bleed right into the retina or into the vitreous, the gel that fills the inside of the eyeball. Both types of retinopathy can cause significant vision loss.

There are little to no symptoms in the early stages of diabetic retinopathy. In some cases, people may experience a slight decrease in the clarity of their vision, but it still remains quite good. This is why it is essential to receive complete dilated-eye examinations, as they help detect diabetic changes. If bleeding occurs and the disease progresses, a person's vision may become blurred with floaters or become very cloudy.

For more information about diagnosing and treating Diabetic Retinopathy, please read or download our guide to Diabetic Retinopathy.

Cataracts

Almost 20 million people worldwide are blind because of cataracts. It is a major cause of vision loss worldwide. Many people assumed that is they get cataracts they will become blind, but with advanced surgery, lost vision can be restored in most cases. More than 1 million cataract surgeries are performed annually in the United States.

A cataract forms when the lens, or transparent part of your eye, becomes cloudy. The lens of your eyes focuses light into the retina, which is located at the back of the eye. If the lens is opaque or cloudy, light cannot pass through to the retina, which results in cloudy or blurry vision.

Aging is one of the biggest factors associated with cataract development. As we age, the lens in our eyes becomes cloudy and begins to harden. There is recent evidence that exposure to ultraviolet light contributes to cataracts forming. To some degree, over half of all people over 65 have cataract development. There are a number of factors that also contribute to cataract formation including: diabetes, high blood pressure, eye injuries, kidney disease, smoking, and certain medications.

For more information about diagnosing and treating cataracts, please read or download our guide to Cataracts.

Glaucoma

Approximately 12% of new cases of blindness each year are due to glaucoma. Glaucoma is a disease of the optic that develops gradually (usually over the course of many years), and does not cause any pain. The optic nerve serves as the "cable" between the eye to the brain. Glaucoma is the progressive loss fibers in the optic nerve due to a rise in pressure inside of the eyes. Its symptoms are very subtle, and worsen over time. These include loss of peripheral vision, blurred vision and the inability to adjust your eyes to darkened rooms.

While this can result in complete vision loss, early diagnosis and treatment techniques can help patients maintain their vision for life. For more information about diagnostic techniques and treatment options, please read or download our guide to glaucoma.

Macular Degeneration

The nerve layer in the back of the eye of the retina. The retina is where images form, similar to film in a camera. The macula is the size of a pinhead, and controls vision in our central field of vision. This is area you see if you look through a tiny area, such as a drinking straw. If this part of your eye is damaged, your central vision is reduced or even lost, but side vision (peripheral) vision is unaffected.

Macular degeneration progresses slowly. In the early stages, the effect on a person's vision is minimal, if not unnoticeable. As it progresses, it becomes harder to see fine details, such a small print. A person's vision may also be distorted and parts of an object may appear to be missing. Like glaucoma, this disease does not cause any pain.

There are two types of macular degeneration: wet and dry. In the wet form, the blood vessels under the retina leak fluid and a large scar develops. This can result in severe vision loss.

Dry macular degeneration causes changes in the pigment layer supporting the retina, which can lead to retinal damage. The vision loss is typically very slow, but may become severe over time.

There is not a specific cause for macular degeneration, but the environments, general health, age, and heredity may all be factors. Recent studies indicate eating leafy, green vegetables can help protect the eyes and prevent macular degeneration. Smoking greatly increases the risk of vision loss.

Please download our guide to Macular Degeneration for more information on diagnosis and treatment of this condition.

See the Difference with Paden Eye Care

Paden Eye Care provides innovative, informative, and highly personalized eye care for patients in Southern Oregon communities including Medford, Grants Pass, Klamath Falls, and Ashand. We are committed to helping patients not only achieve great eye health, but improve their overall health. Dr. Paden is happy to provide patients with the resources they need to take charge of their nutrition and health.

For more information about our eye care services and our treatments, please give us a call at (541) 776-9026.