Ophthalmology is a field of clinical medicine that studies eye diseases: pathological conditions of the eyeball and the accessory apparatus of the eye – lacrimal glands, eyelids, conjunctiva, as well as bone and soft tissue structures surrounding the eyes.
The most important task of ophthalmology is the development and improvement of methods for the prevention, detection and treatment of eye diseases aimed at preserving and correcting visual function. Specialists in the field of eye diseases are ophthalmologists. More narrow ophthalmological specialties include surgical and laser ophthalmology, ophthalmooncology, ophthalmic traumatology, pediatric ophthalmology, etc.
The visual analyzer is a unique sense organ in its meaning. With the help of vision, a person receives up to 80% of information about the world around him. Unfortunately, the percentage of people suffering from eye diseases worldwide is steadily increasing. Therefore, it is so important to have an idea of the first signs of eye diseases, measures for the prevention of ophthalmopathology and ways of its treatment, as well as to understand the importance of timely seeking qualified ophthalmological care.
A disease of this category can occur at any age: they can be genetically determined, congenital, acquired. In children, a significant decrease and loss of vision leads to a delay in mental development, negatively affects the speech function, the motor sphere in the future, forms distorted, fuzzy, fragmentary ideas about the surrounding reality, makes it difficult to establish social ties and behavioral skills in society.
In this regard, the system of early care in ophthalmology provides screening of newborns, children of early, preschool and school age in order to identify subclinical signs (retinopathy of prematurity, strabismus, amblyopia, glaucoma, cataracts, myopia, hyperopia, etc.) and provide early correctional medical and pedagogical assistance.
Acquired diseases can be associated with common and infectious human diseases: beriberi A, measles rubella, diabetes mellitus, injuries, chronic foci of bacterial infection, hypertension, atherosclerosis, renal pathology, neurological diseases, pregnancy pathology, etc. Most often in ophthalmology eye diseases are diagnosed, characterized by abnormalities in the optical apparatus of the eye – hyperopia, presbyopia, myopia, astigmatism, etc.
A large group of eye diseases consists of inflammatory pathology of various structures of the organ of vision – conjunctivitis, keratitis, blepharitis, iridocyclitis, retinitis, uveitis, endophthalmitis, barley, etc. Traumatic damage to the structures of the eye is extremely dangerous in its consequences – burns, mechanical damage to the eyes, ingestion of foreign bodies.
Diseases can develop acutely or gradually, suddenly manifesting itself with a sharp decrease in vision. This kind of pathology primarily includes diseases of the neurovascular apparatus of the eye: atrophy of the optic nerve, ischemic neuropathy of the optic nerve, occlusion of the arteries and veins of the retina, chorioretinal dystrophy, etc. Factors that negatively affect the function of vision and increase the risk of eye diseases are considered age, chronic heart and vascular diseases, metabolic diseases, adverse environmental conditions, stress, smoking, deficiency of vitamins and rare trace elements (zinc, selenium), etc.
The last decades have been marked by the rapid development of ophthalmology. At the disposal of specialists today are modern equipment, innovative technologies, minimally invasive techniques. To detect eye diseases, a large range of diagnostic techniques is used – test, biometric, ultrasound, electrophysiological, X-ray, optical, laboratory, etc. Laser installations used for vision correction, treatment of corneal and retinal pathology, glaucoma and cataracts have found wide application in the surgery of eye diseases.
Traditional therapeutic manipulations, hardware methods of vision correction, microsurgical techniques for the treatment have not lost their relevance in ophthalmology. To date, most surgical interventions in ophthalmology can be performed on an outpatient basis.