Eye Info

Edmonton Vision Centre

About Your Eyes

This section is designed to give a generalized information about some of the common eye conditions. Please consult your eye care professionals for the treatment and any additional insights to your specific complaint. Please click on the links on the left to view detailed information.


Allergic conjunctivitis is a reaction to exposure to allergens such as pollen from grasses and trees, smoke, dust or chemicals. It is characterized by redness, itching, swelling of the clear tissue covering the white of the eye (conjunctiva) and watery discharge.
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One of the most common injuries to the eye is a scratch (abrasion). Removing surface layers of the cornea exposes nerve endings, and is very painful. Excessive tearing, light sensitivity, blurred vision, redness and a feeling of having something in the eye are common symptoms.
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Leakage of the small blood vessels in the retina (the back lining of the eye) leads to fluid buildup and causes swelling between the cells. The macula, the area needed for sharp vision, swells more than the rest of the retina, due to the arrangement of the cells. This condition usually occurs at any age after 20, and is more common in males. Most often only one eye is affected. Symptoms include blurred or distorted vision, seeing straight lines as wavy and changes in color perception.
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Glaucoma/Optical Nerve

Angle closure glaucoma occurs when there is a sudden increase in fluid pressure inside the eye. Normally, fluid is secreted into the eye to help nourish structures inside the eye. When the drainage channel is blocked, fluid pressure increases, causing severe pain and loss of vision. Rainbow colored haloes are seen around lights, and the severe pain often causes nausea and vomiting. Patients who are pre-disposed to this condition generally have a narrow area through which the fluid drains, making it more easily blocked by the iris, the colored part of the eye.
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Eye Lid

Blepharitis is a chronic inflammation of the lid margins. Symptoms vary according to the severity of the condition and include irritation, stinging, dryness, burning, redness, and lid swelling. Symptoms are generally worse upon awakening due to the build up of crusts and scales during sleep or at the end of the day because of dry eye problems caused by a disrupted tear film.
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There are thirteen nerves (cranial nerves) that control the central nervous system (CNS). Many disorders that affect the seventh cranial nerve (facial nerve) will cause facial weakness on one side. Bell’s palsy is a sudden paralysis on one side of the face of unknown cause.
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Systematic Disorders

Infection is caused by one of several related retroviruses which become incorporated into the DNA of the cell. These viruses, named HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) affect the number and functioning of the infection fighting cells of the body. AIDS is a secondary syndrome resulting from HIV infection. Diseases associated with AIDS occur because the infection fighting cells are reduced and weakened.
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The lens inside the eye is normally almost transparent. Its function is to help focus light onto the retina, the back lining of the eye. The term cataract refers to any loss of transparency. Cataracts occur in many forms and are due to a variety of causes. Most commonly, cataracts are associated with aging. They may also be caused by trauma, radiation, ultraviolet light, medications, and systemic diseases (such as diabetes) and some cataracts are congenital. Not all cataracts are progressive, but those that are cause a gradual, painless loss of vision.
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Retinopathy of prematurity is a condition that occurs approximately 50% of the time in newborns with weights of less than 1500 grams or less than 30 weeks gestational age. ROP is diagnosed within 6 weeks after birth by pupillary dilation of the newborn. Abnormal blood vessel growth and zones of retina without blood vessels are observed. In its most advanced form, the problem may be noted because a white pupil is observed.
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