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    How Radiation Exposure Can Lead to Cataracts

    Last updated 1 month ago

    You probably know that the sun’s rays can damage your skin and even lead to cancer. Did you also know that UV radiation can damage your eyes? Short-term exposure to UV rays can result in something known as photokeratitis, which may be painful and produce red, itchy, sensitive eyes. This is temporary, however, and doesn’t normally lead to long-term damage. However, long-term exposure to UV rays over many years can increase your chances of developing cataracts, and can damage the retina as well. To minimize your risk of experiencing eye damage and cataracts caused by UV radiation, always wear sunglasses that block 100% of UVA and UVB rays. People who spend a good deal of time in the outdoors skiing, climbing, or at the beach should be especially aware of the damage the sun can do to their eyes. 

    If you have noticed any changes in your vision or if it’s just been a while since you’ve seen your eye doctor, contact Gerstein Eye Institute at (773) 649-5532 to make an appointment. We have been serving our Chicago-area patients with high-quality and compassionate eye care since we first opened our doors in 1968.

    What to Expect During LASIK surgery

    Last updated 1 month ago

    Are you tired of having to rely on glasses and contact lenses to get through the day? Do you wish you could wake up in the morning and see everything clearly? If so, it might be time to talk to your eye doctor about LASIK surgery. LASIK is a procedure that can eliminate your dependence on visual assistance, so you can look and see your best without help. LASIK technology has advanced over the years, and can now be completed without the use of any blades. Keep reading to learn what you can expect from LASIK surgery. 

    Preparing for the Procedure

    If you are planning to undergo LASIK surgery, you’ll have to start preparing a few weeks in advance. You and your eye doctor will go through a preliminary examination to make sure you are a good candidate for the procedure. If you wear soft contact lenses, you’ll need to stop wearing them for about two weeks before your exam. This is because contact lenses can temporarily change the shape of your corneas, and they need to return to their natural shape for an accurate examination. The day before your procedure, you should stop using any makeup or lotions around your eyes, as they could increase the risk of infection after LASIK surgery.

    During the Procedure

    Now that you and your doctor have determined that LASIK is right for you, you’re almost ready to undergo the procedure. Make sure you have a ride to and from your doctor’s office. The surgery itself should take only about 30 minutes, and your eyes will be numbed so that you feel only a slight pressure. The actual reshaping of the cornea takes less than one minute, and with the latest in laser technology, the procedure is incredibly precise.

    Recovering from the Procedure

    You may experience some discomfort following your surgery, but thanks to bladeless technologies, the recovery period is shorter than ever before. Be careful not to rub your eyes, even if they feel itchy, as this could result in the need for further treatment.

    You’ve waited long enough to have better vision. Call Gerstein Eye Institute of Chicago today at (773) 649-5532 to begin your journey towards better eyesight. The only things you have to lose are your glasses and contact lenses!

    A Look at Diabetic Retinopathy

    Last updated 2 months ago

    People with diabetes have an elevated risk of developing certain diseases, including diseases associated with the eyes. Watch this video to get an overview of diabetic retinopathy. 

    Diabetic retinopathy is the most common eye disease associated with diabetes. It can lead to impaired vision and even total blindness. As the blood vessels in the retina change due to diabetes, they can swell and leak fluid or blood into the eye. In some cases, new blood vessels grow on the retina’s surface, impairing vision. People with diabetic retinopathy may not notice any symptoms at first, but it can worsen over time.

    If you have diabetes, it is essential to visit your eye doctor on a regular basis to maintain good ocular health. Call Gerstein Eye Institute at (773) 649-5532 to learn more about diabetic retinopathy and to schedule an eye screening today. 

    Common Eye Conditions that Can Develop with Age

    Last updated 2 months ago

    As you get older, there are many changes that start to happen in your body. While some of these changes are purely cosmetic, such as growing grey hair, other changes can affect the way you live your life. You may have noticed that your vision has changed in recent years, requiring you to wear glasses when you read or when you’re driving. There are also a few eye conditions that become more likely to develop as you age, including macular degeneration, cataracts, and glaucoma. Read on to learn more about these common age-related eye conditions

    Macular Degeneration

    Age-related macular degeneration is one of the most common causes of vision loss in people over the age of 50. It interferes with an individual’s ability to have sharp central vision. Depending on the person, age-related macular degeneration can progress very slowly or very quickly, and can affect one or both eyes. Though this condition on its own does not lead to total blindness, it can interfere with everyday tasks such as driving, reading, writing, and focusing on faces. Smoking doubles your risk for age-related macular degeneration, giving you yet another reason to quit tobacco use.


    In a healthy eye, the lens is clear and helps focus light on the retina to produce an image. However, as you get older, the lens can harden and start to get cloudy as cataracts form. This can result in blurred or dulled vision, and can interfere with your ability to recognize certain colors. Cataracts may be caused simply by wear and tear on the eyes, but smoking and diabetes can both contribute to their development. Surgery may be indicated if cataracts become severe.


    Glaucoma is one of the leading causes of blindness in the United States, and can affect anyone. This condition damages the optic nerve and can result in partial vision loss or total blindness. Because glaucoma is usually associated with high pressure within the eye, your eye doctor will test your eye pressure to determine if you have an elevated risk of developing the disease.

    It’s important to take good care of your eyes as you get older. Contact Gerstein Eye Institute at (773) 649-5532. We are one of the top centers in Illinois for comprehensive eye care, including LASIK, cataract surgery, and intraocular contact lenses. 

    Signs LASIK Isn't Right for You

    Last updated 2 months ago

    Patients used to turn to only eyeglasses or contact lenses to correct their vision problems, but today’s patients can benefit from undergoing LASIK surgery. This surgical procedure utilizes lasers to correct vision problems, allowing patients to see clearly without the aid of eyeglasses and contact lenses.

    While many patients can find the right solution with LASIK, others may not be the best candidates. If you have refractive instability, LASIK is probably not a good choice. This refers to patients who are experiencing hormonal changes due to pregnancy or disease, patients taking certain medications, and patients younger than in their early 20s. LASIK may not be right for you if it might affect your career or hobbies or you cannot handle the cost concerns at this point.

    Do you want help deciding if LASIK is right for you? Get help answering that question by scheduling an appointment at Gerstein Eye Institute. Contact us at (773) 649-5532 for more information about LASIK and which patients make the best candidates. 

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