Serving Clearwater for more than 60 years, St. Michael’s Eye & Laser Institute is a top-rated eye care facility featuring an elite group of doctors who are knowledgeable about a variety of eye ailments. We pride ourselves on providing Clearwater patients with quality care in a friendly and comfortable environment. With state-of-the-art technology and lasers, we can protect and restore patient vision with treatments that include:
Cataracts are proteins that amass on the lens of the eye, causing a growing cloudiness that makes it difficult to see. The most reliable way to restore clear vision is with cataract surgery, which removes the hazy natural lens and replaces it with an artificial lens. The procedure is quick and effective, allowing most patients to see better almost immediately. Because cataracts cannot form again on an artificial lens, patients do not need to worry about cataracts returning.
Patients who do not wish to constantly wear eyeglasses or contacts to address refractive errors like astigmatism, myopia and hyperopia may choose to replace their natural lens with an intraocular lens (IOL). Clear lens exchange (or refractive lens exchange) is a procedure that permanently implants a clear, artificial lens that corrects vision automatically. St. Michael’s has toric, multifocal, monofocal accommodating and phakic lenses to cater to a wide range of patients.
While most people need to wear eyeglasses or contacts to overcome astigmatism, nearsightedness and farsightedness, not everyone wants the hassle of wearing prescription lenses. Our surgeons use a laser to efficiently and gently reshape the cornea to correct any refractive errors. Nearly every patient has 20/40 vision or better after surgery, thereby lowering dependence on eyewear. With epi-LASIK, our surgeons can create a tinier flap on the cornea, which makes recovery quicker and easier. For most patients, the results from LASIK are permanent.
Glaucoma is a buildup of pressure in the eye, which goes on to damage the optic nerve. It is one of the leading causes of blindness worldwide. Vision lost through glaucoma cannot return, so it is critical to diagnose and treat the condition early to preserve as much sight as possible. Our doctors may suggest medicated eye drops and/or laser treatment to drain fluids from the eyes and relieve the pressure.
People with chronic dry experience an itching or burning sensation in their eyes due to inadequate lubrication. Age, use of contact lenses, the environment and eye disease can contribute to this condition. Not only is dry eye irritating, but it also can cause lasting damage if untreated. The doctors at St. Michael’s have multiple treatment options including medicated eye drops to relieve discomfort associated with dry eye, as well as tips for keeping the eyes moist.
The cornea is the clear dome on the surface on the eye through which light passes to enable sight. In some circumstances, surgery may be the best treatment option for ailments like a torn or injured cornea, corneal ulcers or keratoconus. Corneal transplant can improve eye health by surgically replacing part of the cornea with tissue from a donor cornea. Successful surgery can help to restore and preserve vision.
Patients with keratoconus notice a gradual bulging of the cornea, beginning between the ages of 15 and 25. As the cornea becomes more cone-shaped, the quality of vision declines to the point where even prescription lenses may not be effective. Depending on the severity of the condition, our doctors may recommend a scleral lens or a rigid gas-permeable contact lens custom fit to the shape of the cornea. In extreme cases, a corneal transplant may be warranted.
Patients with diabetes are strongly encouraged to undergo regular eye exams. Having irregular blood sugar levels can cause blood vessels in the retina to leak and damage the optic nerve. To preserve the vision of patients with diabetic retinopathy, our doctors perform a laser treatment (pan retinal photocoagulation) that seals the leaky bloody vessels. If too much blood has already leaked into the vitreous gel, vitrectomy surgery can drain the fluid and replace it with a saline solution to restore vision.
Age-related macular degeneration is a condition characterized by a gradual loss of central vision, which makes it difficult to make out text and details. While experts have not found a cure for AMD, treatments can help slow the progression to preserve eyesight for as long as possible. Medicated injections or laser therapy can stop the formation of blood vessels. A diet (or supplements) rich in vitamins C and E and omega-3 fatty acids are also beneficial.
Schedule an Appointment
The lauded team of doctors at St. Michael’s Eye & Laser Institute treat a variety of eye conditions, in addition to conducting comprehensive eye exams and offering Clearwater’s best selection of frames at our optical store. To make an appointment with us, please call (727) 585-2200 or book directly online.