The Hargrave Eye Center is located at Methodist Dallas Medical Center in Dallas, Texas.

It was founded in 2003 by Sylvia Hargrave MD, FACS.

The Hargrave Eye Center (2)

This premier eye care center attributes it success to outstanding customer service and fervent patient loyalty.  The warm contemporary office houses the absolute latest technology for advanced medical diagnosis and treatment.  The goal is to ease patient anxiety and approach both diagnosis and treatment as a patient-centered team.

Prior to completing her ophthalmology training, Dr. Hargrave spent one year at The University of Medicine and Dentistry in Newark, New Jersey as an intern in internal medicine.  During this year, Dr. Hargrave studied systemic medical disease in both an inpatient and outpatient setting.  Systemic diseases are diseases that involve many organs or the whole body.  Many of these diseases also affect the eyes.  In fact, an eye exam sometimes leads to the first diagnosis of a systemic disease.

The Hargrave Eye Center specializes in total eye health.  Maintaining excellent eye health is not only important for good vision, but also for good health.  The eye serves as a unique window into our overall medical health as well.  The eye is the only place in the body where, without surgery, we can look into it and see veins, arteries and a nerve (optic nerve).  The eyes’ transparency explains why common eye diseases such as glaucoma, cataracts, and macular degeneration can be detected before the vision is affected with regular eye examinations.

It is not uncommon for people to lead very busy lives.  Consequently, they delay not only their eye exams, but also their yearly physicals as well.  That is why ophthalmologists commonly are the first ones to diagnose medical conditions that can affect the entire body, i.e., systemic diseases, from a thorough eye examination.  We often discover diabetes, high blood pressure, or even some types of arthritis from an eye examination.

The Eye and Systemic Disease

hargraveeyecenter_humaneyeThe eye is very important in systemic disease.  It is composed of many different types of tissue thus making it susceptible to different types of diseases.  The eye can provide insight into many of the systems of the body.  Signs of systemic disease can be evident on the outer surface of the eye (eyelids, conjunctiva, cornea), the middle of the eye (iris, lens, ciliary body), or the back of the eye (retina, vitreous, optic nerve).

What are the most common systemic diseases that affect the eye?

  1. Atherosclerosis – hardening of the arteries
  2. Diabetes – an imbalance in blood sugar levels
  3. Graves’ disease – a thyroid disorder, can cause protruding eyes
  4. Hypertension – high blood pressure
  5. Lupus – connective tissue disorder of skin, joints, kidneys
  6. Multiple sclerosis – affects nerve coverings, causes muscle weakness
  7. Rheumatoid arthritis – affect joints with stiffness and pain
  8. Sarcoidosis – affects lungs, brain, joints, eyes
  9. Sickle cell disease – blood disorder affecting African Americans

How are these diseases treated?

For any of the aforementioned eye problems, it is important to have a thorough eye examination by an ophthalmologist.  The treatment of many of these conditions requires a team approach.  Your ophthalmologist and primary care doctor (or family physician) will work together to develop a treatment plan.  As you can see, the ophthalmologist often plays a primary role in both the diagnosis and treatment of systemic diseases.  Depending upon the condition, systemic treatment (in the form of pills, injections, or surgery) may be needed.  Treatment of the eye diseases that accompany these systemic diseases can range from drugs for inflammatory diseases (e.g., uveitis) to laser for retinal vascular diseases (e.g., diabetic retinopathy), to surgery for tumors.

The Hargrave Eye Center is prepared to work with you and your primary care physician to diagnose, treat, and manage any eye condition that you have.  The contemporary offices at the Hargrave Eye Center offer the latest advancement in medical diagnosis and treatment.  A team centered approach to therapy reduced patient anxiety.  Whether you are visiting their extensive eyewear gallery or seeking a medical diagnosis for you ophthalmic ailment, the Hargrave Eye Center is the place to go in Dallas for all of your eyecare needs.

10 Things your eyes can say about your health

  • Symptom: blurred vision in a diabetic

    1. diabetics are at increased for several severe eye problems including glaucoma and cataracts
    2. most common threat to vision = diabetic retinopathy, a condition where blood vessels leak in the retina
    3. the leading cause of blindness in American adults
    4. action: yearly dilated eye exams to detect and control early stage of retinopathy, glaucoma, cataracts before they cause problems with vision
  • Symptom:  sudden double vision, dim vision, or loss of vision

    1. can be the visual warning signs of stroke
    2. other signs include numbness, weakness typically on one side of the body, loss of balance, slurred speech, severe headache
    3. action:  immediate medical attention, dial 911
  • Symptom:  eyes that seem to bulge or protrude

    1. overactive thyroid gland is most common cause also known as Graves’ disease
    2. condition tends to develop slowly and this is sometimes first noticed in photos or by the occasional visitor rather than someone who sees the person daily
    3. can be associated with blurred vision, weight loss, tremors palpitations, fatigue
    4. action:  blood test to measure thyroid levels with physician
  • Symptom:  whites of eyes look yellow

    1. called jaundice and can be seen in adults  with liver gallbladder or bile duct  disease
    2. also occurs in hepatitis and cirrhosis
    3. action: report to physician for evaluation and treatment
  • Symptom: red, itchy eyes

    1. many things can irritate eyes and cause redness
    2. typical of allergies when accompanied by sneezing, coughing, runny nose, sinus congestion
    3. action: evaluation by ophthalmologist for possible allergic conjunctivitis treatment and allergy testing
  •  Symptom:  bumpy yellowish patches on the eyelids

    1. called Xanthelasma
    2. may or may not indicate high cholesterol
    3. action: cholesterol screening by primary care doctor
  • Symptom: bump or brown spot of the eyelid

    1. elderly, fair-skinned people are at highest risk for these potential tumors
    2. bump may appear pearly or have rolled edges; if bump in eyelash area, some lashes may be missing
    3. malignant eyelid tumors include basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma, and melanoma
    4. action: have lesions checked by an ophthalmologist, dermatologist, or primary care physician, excisional biopsy may be needed to confirm diagnosis
  • Symptom: burning, tired eyes when using computer

    1. commonly known as computer vision syndrome and is a form of eyestrain cause by lack of contrast on a computer screen
    2. tends to be worse in afternoon and when using small fonts
    3. people who wear glasses or contact tend to have more symptoms
    4. action: reduce glare on computer by adjusting contrast on computer screen, closing shades in room; flat panel LCD displays cause less eyestrain; give eyes a break; lubricating eye drops at regular intervals
  • Symptom: stye(s) that is recurrent or will not go away

    1. most are innocuous and are called chalazia (singular = chalazion) and occur along eyelid margin
    2. recurrent spots that do not resolve in months, especially in the same location need careful evaluation
    3. styes are blocked oil glands in the lid; these glands produce oily layer of tear film so that tears do not evaporate from eye
    4. action: show ophthalmologist recurrent spots and a biopsy can often confirm the diagnosis
  • Symptom:  blind spot in vision with wavy lights shimmering lights or lightning bolts

    1. ocular migraine can cause these symptoms with or without a headache
    2. changes in blood flow in the brain are a likely cause
    3. visual phenomena can start in central vision, appear as dots, lines, light streaks or appear as if one is looking a cracked glass/mirror
    4. can be triggered by caffeine, stress, chocolate, alcohol
    5. action: evaluation by an ophthalmologist and a neurologist