Dry, itchy eyes are a common condition for many people. But when that itchy, sandy sensation becomes chronic what’s the best way to relieve it? On today's Health Minute, ophthalmologist …
April 22nd, 2021
Interviewer: Dry eyes. Ophthalmologist Dr. Amy Lin, if somebody comes to you with that problem what do you recommend?
Dr. Lin: So dry eye is a very common condition that I see, and the symptoms of it include a sandy sensation in your eyes, redness, fluctuating vision during the day, and tearing. And there a lot of treatments out there for them, but one of the best actually is artificial tears or eye drops. They can get non-prescription, and you want to look for eye drops that are specifically made for dry eyes.
Please do not get eye drops that take the red out or for allergies. Those are not going to treat dry eyes. And you want to put the drops in about two to four times a day for at least a couple of weeks, and if you do not see any improvement whatsoever, I'd recommend that you see your eye care professional, and they may recommend other treatments to improve your symptoms.
What's the best way to treat chronic dry, itchy eyes?
Sometimes sleeping with contact lens—or not cleaning them properly—can result in an eye infection. On this Health Minute, Ophthalmologist Dr. Amy Lin talks about infections from contact…
August 6th, 2021
Interviewer: You know, contact lenses are great but they can also be dangerous. Ophthalmologist Dr. Amy Lin is from the Moran Eye Center. What do you tell your patients to watch out for?
Dr. Lin: My main concern with contact lens use is infections from misuse. The worst case scenario is you can actually lose your eyesight from a bad infection. The symptoms of an infection include redness, pain and blurry vision. Some common ways that people actually misuse their contact lenses are sleeping in their contact lenses, swimming or showering with your contact lenses in, not cleaning them properly.
You do need to change that solution every day and to change the contact lens case every three to six months. You also don't want to extend the use of a contact lens beyond what is recommended for your lenses. And if your eye hurts, don't put your contact lenses in. Go see your eye doctor about it and make sure there's no infection.
Sometimes sleeping with contact lens—or not cleaning them properly—can result in an eye infection. Learn about the infections from contact lens misuse, the symptoms of eye infections and what you can do to keep your eyes healthy.
On this episode of Seven Questions for a Specialist, The Scope speaks with Dr. Amy Lin, ophthalmologist at Moran Eye Institute. What’s the best and worst thing you can do for your eyes? What…
September 7th, 2016
Announcer: Seven questions, seven answers, it's Seven Questions for a Specialist on The Scope.
Interviewer: Today on Seven Questions, it's Seven Questions for an Eye Expert. Dr. Amy Lin is an ophthalmologist at Moran Eye Institute, and I've got seven questions for you. We're going to just do these very quickly and see what kind of answers we get, see what we can uncover and discover. All right, question number one, what is the best thing that somebody can do for their eyes to make sure that they stay healthy?
Dr. Lin: So I would recommend having a healthy diet full of antioxidants, leafy green vegetables and fruits. I mean, it helps the rest of your body and that also keeps your eyes very healthy.
Interviewer: All right. On the opposite end of that, what is the worst thing somebody can do to their eyes?
Dr. Lin: Rubbing them.
Interviewer: Really? Rubbing them is the worst thing.
Dr. Lin: That would be bad, yeah. That could cause destabilization of your cornea and cause a disease called keratoconus.
Interviewer: Question number three, other than being nearsighted or farsighted, what's the most common eye problem that you encounter?
Dr. Lin: The most common problem is cataracts. Everyone gets cataracts with age, but it's been found that people who lead a healthy lifestyle, no smoking, having a healthy diet, wearing sunglasses, can maybe delay the need for cataract surgery.
Interviewer: All right, number four, what do you think the most important thing that people need to know when it comes to eyes?
Dr. Lin: One thing that everyone in Utah should know about eyes is that because we live in such a dry climate, pretty much everyone who lives here has dry eyes. So if you ever feel like your eyes are irritated or teary or red, getting blurry, it's probably dry eyes, so you have to get some over-the-counter moisturizing eye drops to help with that.
Interviewer: All right, here's one. My mom always said that reading in dim light causes vision loss. Is that true?
Dr. Lin: No. It really doesn't cause any vision problems. I mean, just reading in general can cause your eye to get more dry because you're kind of staring at something and concentrating. It's been found that people blink about a third of the time when they're concentrating on something versus not, so you'd just as be careful not to let your eyes dry out too much and take a break every so often.
Interviewer: All right, next question. Are there bifocal contacts?
Dr. Lin: There are. There are actually different zones in the bifocal, and you kind of have to look through the different zones to see. It's not for everybody. And people may have to get used to them for some time, but some people love them and they really can't live without them.
Interviewer: And question number seven for Seven Questions for an Eye Expert, why did you decide to specialize in eyes.
Dr. Lin: So I love being able to help people see better, and sometimes it's as simple as giving a child their first pair of glasses and they're seeing the world for the first time. Nowadays, I'm doing cataract surgery and cornea transplants to really try and improve people's vision, and so it's really rewarding to see people get their vision back because then they can become independent and be able to go back to work. And it's really rewarding to see people kind of gaining independence and getting their lives back again.
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When you think of corrective vision surgery, LASIK may be the first procedure that comes to mind, but did you realize there are other options available that might be better for you? PRK is an older,…
March 28th, 2016
Interviewer: When you think of vision correction surgery, most people think of Lasik. It's not the only option. We'll discuss what the other treatments might be next on The Scope.
Announcer: Medical news and research from University of Utah physicians and specialists you can use for a happier and healthier life. You're listening to The Scope.
Interviewer: We are in the office of Dr. Amy Lin today. She's an ophthalmologist at the Moran Eye Center at the University of Utah. Dr. Lin, first of all, tell me why someone would even need to go get Lasik.
Dr. Lin: People get Lasik to get out of their glasses or contact lenses. They want to correct their nearsightedness or their farsightedness or their astigmatism. That's why someone would want to have Lasik.
Interviewer: That's not the only option, I'm hearing. There are other surgery options besides Lasik.
Dr. Lin: That's correct. The most common alternative to Lasik is something called PRK. PRK was actually the precursor to Lasik, but we still do a lot of PRK nowadays because there are certain advantages with PRK. And it does the same thing as Lasik, corrects nearsightedness and farsightedness and astigmatism. Instead of having a flap in the cornea like there is with Lasik. With PRK, there is no flap in the cornea, but your eye has to heal over naturally.
Interviewer: When a patient comes to the office and they ask you for suggestions of what treatments and what surgery they should do, how do you decide Lasik is better for you or PRK?
Dr. Lin: We do a whole variety of measurements in the office. We measure the steepness and the shape of the cornea. We measure the thickness. We measure the prescription in the eyes. And based off of that data, we decide is the cornea thick enough for Lasik and PRK because you do need a thicker cornea for Lasik. Is the prescription too high for Lasik and maybe still ok for PRK? That's kind of one objective measure that we have for choosing one or the other.
There are other parameters that we look at. We actually look at the patient and if they have a lot of dryness in their eyes, like they can't wear the contact lenses for a long time because their eyes become too dry, with Lasik, we know that you get a lot of dry eye afterwards than with PRK. If you have dry eye existing, it may be a better option to go with PRK rather than Lasik so you don't worsen your dry eye.
Interviewer: When your doctor tells you that they recommend PRK as your treatment, does that mean that you are not a candidate for Lasik? Can you not do Lasik if you are recommended PRK?
Dr. Lin: Usually, people are either candidates for both or candidates for just PRK. If a doctor recommends to you that they recommend PRK, usually, it means there's something that usually bothers them in Lasik and they think it might be too risky to do Lasik, but it would be safe to do PRK.
Interviewer: Now, are the outcomes of both of the surgeries the same?
Dr. Lin: Yes, the outcomes are the same. When they do the studies that compare PRK versus Lasik, the visual outcomes are the same. PRK takes a lot longer to heal whereas Lasik is a lot faster. Lasik people are saying well after a day or so. With PRK, it takes several weeks. That's not to say that you're blind for several weeks. It's just not to be quite as crisp and clear for several weeks, but the vision does get there. Interviewer: With gradual outcome.
Dr. Lin: Exactly.
Interviewer: With Lasik, from what I understand, there is a laser involved that corrects your eye vision for you. Tell me about PRK. Is that the same thing? Is there a laser involved or is it some totally different procedure?
Dr. Lin: Both Lasik and PRK have a laser involved. With Lasik, there are actually two lasers involved. There is one laser that cuts a flap and the cornea and then, there is a second laser that corrects for the vision. And with PRK, we just use the laser that corrects for the vision. After the laser procedure, with PRK, a bandage contact lens is actually put on the eye and that contact lens is kept in the eye for several days so that your eye can heal. Whereas with Lasik, there isn't any extra material put on your eye. Your eye kind of . . . it's fast and your eye is almost kind of healed at that point. There's really nothing to cover up.
Interviewer: Is there one that you would prefer over the other, in terms of their kind of better outcome long-term.
Dr. Lin: PRK could be a little bit safer and the reason is that with Lasik, there's kind of a long life risk of having additional damage to your eye if your eye gets hit really hard. We're talking hard injury like a car accident, baseball to the eye, a big fall, something like that because the cornea isn't that 100% strength. There could be additional injuries to the eye with whatever injury hits you in the eye, but if you have PRK and you get hit in your eye later on, any eye injury you would have wouldn't be any different than getting hit in your eye right now.
Interviewer: PRK is not a surgery that a patient could come into your office and say, "I want this surgery." It's something that you need to evaluate and it's a doctor-prescribed treatment?
Dr. Lin: Exactly. PRK is an elective surgery, but we still need to see if you are a candidate for it. But some people are not candidates for Lasik and some people are not candidates for Lasik or PRK. I think they're both great procedures and the only way to for you to determine that is to see a doctor, get all the testing to see if you're a candidate.
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