In addition to small incision cataract surgery, Dr. Kassels performs blepharoplasty surgery for dermatochalasis (droopy lids), entropion/ectropion (in-turned/ out-turned lids), eyelid skin cancers, pterygium, trabeculectomy for glaucoma, punctual plugs for dry eye, and a variety of minor procedures. If your condition requires a sub-specialist Dr. Kassels can arrange a referral as appropriate.
Laser and other servicesLaser treatment is available in the office including:
- YAG Capsulotomy for capsule opacification (PCO) after cataract surgery.
- PI, ALT, or SLT (Lumenis Selectra) for glaucoma
- Argon laser fo glaucoma
- Argon laser for localized retinal edema or retinal tears with referral to a retinal specialist when necessary or preferred
Referral for subspecialty ophthalmology procedures like retinal detachment, corneal transplant, DSEK/DSEAK, LASIK or PRK for myopia and astigmatism, Nasolacrimal Duct Obstruction, strabismus, and advanced glaucoma surgery can be arranged.
*Note that cataract surgery routinely corrects nearsightedness or farsightedness AND is covered under your medical insurance. If you are considering vision correction surgery (PRK, LASIK, or EPI-LASIK) and have any degree of cataract, you might do well with standard cataract surgery alone. Save your glasses and medical records from before your refractive surgery (RK, PRK, and LASIK). Changes in your eye after refractive surgery introduce errors in IOL calculations for unavoidable eventual cataract surgery. The more pre-LASIK data we have, the more likely you can remain glasses free when, one day, you need cataract surgery.
Our doctors perform complete medical eye examinations. We diagnose and manage conditions such as glaucoma, macular degeneration, cataract, amblyopia in children, dry eye and diabetic retinopathy. We provide routine vision care and contact lens evaluations and accept most vision care plans. We offer work-in appointments for emergencies such as sudden vision loss, new floaters/flashes, red eye, trauma, or other acute problems. We are happy to provide a second opinion on any ocular condition to set you mind at ease. Tennessee River Eye Clinic now has an optical dispensary: TREC SPECS. Compare our products and pricing to other options in Florence, Muscle Shoals, Russellville, Sheffield, or Tuscumbia.
Ophthalmologist or Optometrist or Optician
An Ophthalmologist is a Medical Doctor (MD or DO) who, after college, has completed 4 years of medical school followed by internship and residency in Ophthalmology and Ophthalmic surgery. Sub-specialists have performed an additional 1 to 4 years of sub-specialty fellowship training to further their skills in managing retina, glaucoma, cornea, or other ophthalmological conditions. A lot of things happen inside an eyeball! An Ophthalmologist will limit his/her medical and surgical practice to his/her training, skill level, and the needs of the patient population. Ophthalmologists can perform routine eye care as well.
An Optometrist is a Doctor of Optometry who, after college, has completed 4 years of Optometry School. An Optometrist usually performs vision exams, refractions (glasses measurements), contact lens exams, and disease diagnosis and management consistent with his/her level of training. Currently in Alabama, optometrists are licensed to manage some eye diseases and prescribe certain medications, but not to perform surgery or laser procedures.
An Optician is a trained professional who fits eyeglasses and, in conjunction with an Ophthalmologist or Optometrist, contact lenses.
Disease monitoring devices: We do not “shot gun” every new patient with every test. But, technology is invaluable for monitoring certain conditions and catching vision threatening disease at a treatable stage.
Our technology includes:
- NIDEK Magellan Mapper Corneal Topographer for keratoconus, pterygium , and corneal nodules
- Spectralis OCT scanning laser interferometry, by Heidelberg Engineering, for glaucoma, macular degeneration, and diabetic retinopathy
- Humphrey Visual Field Analyzer for glaucoma and optic nerve problems
- Sonogauge pachymetry for Fuch’s Dystrophy and Glaucoma suspects
- Carl Zeiss Meditech IOL Master uses laser interference biometry to measure the eye’s focal length to within one one-hundredth of a millimeter for the most predictable outcomes after cataract surgery
Dry Eye Syndrome
When over the counter artificial tears are not enough, we offer:
- Restasis is a low dose immunosuppressant eye drop. With time, aqueous deficiency dry eye patients can produce more of their own natural tears. Restasis may take months to take effect, and will need to be continued indefinitely. But, it can restore your ability to make your own tears.
- Xiidra is another twice daily antiinflammatory eyedrop which can improve the symptoms of dry eye. Xiidra needs to be taken indefinitely.
- Punctal plugs can be inserted in seconds and can last indefinitely. The plug is a small silicone stopper which keeps more of the tears you make on the eye surface.
- Permanent Punctal Occlusion can be performed when punctal plugs help, but do not stay in place.
- Treating the eyelids (meibomitis) can improve “evaporative” dry eye. LipiFlow, Mibo Thermoflo, and eyeXpress are in office treatments are becoming available for the treatment of evaporative dry eye. Currently, these treatments are not covered by insurance. At this time Tennessee River Eye Clinic does not offer office based meibomitis treatment.
Tennessee River Eye Clinic continues to invest in new technology for maintaining your healthy eyes. Our latest investment is the Zeiss HFA3 860 Visual Field Analyzer. Peripheral vision testing, or visual fields, is a crucial part of optimal glaucoma management. The HFA3 has Liquid Lens Technology for a more efficient examination. RelEYE ™ captures an image of your eye with each stimulus so that the doctor can distinguish a real defect from a blink! Plus, all of your prior visual field results are still available for comparison.
Dr. Kassels performs most of his surgery in Sheffield at the Helen Keller Hospital Outpatient Pavilion. They recently upgraded The Shoals's cataract technology with the Alcon Centurion Phacoemulsification System. The "phaco unit" removes the cataract by a computer controlled vacuum/emulsification/irrigation system . The Centurion provides the lowest possible energy and fluid volumes while providing the greatest safety margin in cataract surgery today. Similar to modern cars, it has multiple sensors and computer controls to enhance the safety of a very common procedure. I believe the Centurion is the best on the market!