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Expert treatment for eye and vision concerns

In a healthy eye, light passes through the lens to the back of the eyeball, where it hits the retina. The lens focuses the light precisely onto the retina, which transmits electrical signals along the optic nerve to the brain. The brain processes these signals in order to give us our sight. If anything interferes with this carefully calibrated process, vision will be affected.

Any change in vision can be a concern. Perhaps you’ve noticed that reading has become less enjoyable because the words are harder to see, or maybe you’re struggling with blurred vision. When any kind of change in your vision starts to affect daily life, we don’t believe that you should just have to put up with it.

Ophthalmology involves the assessment, diagnosis and treatment of diseases and disorders of the eye. A doctor who specialises in this area is known as a Consultant Ophthalmologist.

The consultants at The Shirley Oaks Hospital are experts in eye health and help treat a very wide range of conditions and symptoms. Whether you’d like to reduce your dependency on glasses or would like to explore treatment options for a degenerative eye condition, they will help you get the most appropriate treatment, sooner.

Many factors can affect eye health, including injury, high pressure inside the eye and illnesses such as diabetes.

People usually visit our consultants to get help for one of these common symptoms:

  • Blurred vision
  • Reduced vision
  • Glare/dazzle
  • Colour losing intensity
  • Light sensitivity
  • Eye pain

People with some of these symptoms are often found to have cataracts. A cataract causes the lens of your eye to become cloudy, preventing light from passing through it correctly. This affects vision and cannot be adequately corrected by glasses or contact lenses.

Cataracts are extremely common, particularly as we age. Unfortunately, they are not the only problem that can affect our eyes. The Ophthalmology specialists at The Shirley Oaks Hospital also see and treat with the following conditions:

  • Glaucoma - a long-term condition involving damage to the optic nerve from raised pressure in the eye
  • Dry eyes
  • Blepharitis - itchy and swollen eyelids
  • Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) – two types, ‘wet’ and ‘dry’
  • Diabetic retinopathy – a complication of diabetes, affecting the blood supply to the retina. If left untreated, it can lead to blindness.
  • ‘Lumps and bumps’ around the eye and eyelids – such as a stye
  • Inflammation – such as uveitis (inflammation of the middle layer in the eye) and conjunctivitis
  • Eyelid problems – such as drooping eyelids that overhang the eye and affect vision

While some eye conditions cannot be cured, symptoms can often be effectively managed. Your consultant will be able to advise you on suitable treatment options.

  • Cataracts usually get worse over time, so we always advise early treatment. This is normally with minimally invasive surgery, where a small incision is made into eye and the lens removed and replaced with an artificial one. Cataract surgery can be life-changing for many people, who are thrilled to have their vision restored so quickly and easily.
  • Dry eyes, blepharitis and conjunctivitis can often be successfully treated with medication like eye drops.
  • Glaucoma is often treated in stages. Eye drops may to help lower pressure in the eye. Where this doesn’t help, corrective surgery may be needed. There are different ways this can be done, one of which is a trabeculectomy to drain some of the fluid in your eye in order to relieve the pressure. Although this surgery won’t restore vision, it can help prevent additional damage to the optic nerve.

  • If diabetic retinopathy is affecting vision, treatment may by laser treatment (photocoagulation), injections into the eye or by surgery.
  • If you currently wear glasses and would like to explore alternative options, your consultant can discuss this with you. Refractive lens surgery (also known as lens exchange surgery) replaces the natural lens with an artificial one that is tailored to your specific vision correction requirements. These can be multifocal or trifocal, and your consultant will discuss options with you. Alternatively, laser refractive surgery can be carried out to reshape the front surface of the eye (cornea) in order to improve vision.
  • Age-related macular degeneration cannot be cured, but treatments such as a vascular endothelial growth factor antagonist (VEGF) may help to slow its progress.
  • If sagging upper eyelids are affecting your vision, ptosis surgery can be carried out to tighten the muscles that support the eyelid.

Whatever symptoms you may have, our experienced consultants are here to help you. They will oversee every aspect of your care and carefully monitor results of any treatment to ensure you always receive the most appropriate support.

When you first meet your consultant, they will take a medical history and ask you about your symptoms. They will want to know:

  • What symptoms you have
  • When you first noticed these symptoms
  • Whether the time of day seems to affect your symptoms
  • If you have received any treatment already, such as prescribed medication

They will conduct a detailed examination of your eyes (this is known as an ophthalmologic examination), to check your current vision and the health of your eyes. They may also take measurements of your eye.

In many cases, this will be all that is needed to make a diagnosis. Your consultant will then explain the results to you, discuss suitable treatment options and answer any questions you may have.

In other cases, further tests may be needed such as a visual acuity test or optical coherence tomography (OCT). Occasionally, you may be referred for further investigations, such as a CT or MRI scan. This will often be if you have symptoms like unexplained loss of vision or frequent headaches or migraines.

When the results of any tests are back, your consultant will tailor a treatment plan for your specific requirements and discuss this fully with you.

Many of our patients are local to Croydon and other parts of Surrey, while others travel from further afield to benefit from the expertise of our consultants.

Many people are recommended to us by a friend or family member, while others are referred by their optician, GP or private medical insurance provider. We treat private medical insurance and self-pay patients, and you can self-refer to avoid delay.

When you visit The Shirley Oaks Hospital for help with your eye condition, you will benefit from:

  • Rapid access to an expert – Many conditions affecting the eye, such as cataracts and glaucoma, are best treated at the earliest possible stage. We can arrange an appointment for you with an experienced consultant without delay. By getting earlier assessment and diagnosis, you will be able to start benefitting from the best treatment for your condition sooner.
  • Patient Satisfaction – In an independent survey, 97.7% of patients said they were likely or highly likely to recommend us to their friends and family.
  • Personalised care – Treatment is always tailored to the individual. Regular reviews by your consultant will make sure that you continue to benefit from the most appropriate treatment.
  • Convenient appointments – With Ophthalmology appointments available throughout the week, you’ll be able to book an appointment to suit your availability. We are also able to offer remote consultations by telephone or video if required (and where clinically appropriate).
  • Location – The Shirley Oaks Hospital is located on the outskirts of Croydon, within easy reach of all major road and rail networks. Our car park is free for patients and visitors.

If your eyesight is causing you problems, why not book a consultation with one of our experienced specialists?

Specialists offering Ophthalmology

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Mr Edward Lee

Consultant Ophthalmologist

MA (Oxon) BM BCh PhD FRCOphth

Shirley Oaks Hospital

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Miss Tree Richardson

Consultant Ophthalmologist

Mbbs (hons), Bsc, FRCS (ophth)

Shirley Oaks Hospital

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Mr Ramu Muniraju

Consultant Ophthalmologist


Shirley Oaks Hospital

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Mr V.K. Wagh

Consultant Ophthalmic Surgeon


Shirley Oaks Hospital

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Prof William Ayliffe

Consultant Ophthalmologist

MBBS, BSc, DO, FRCS(Lond), FRCS(Ed), FRCOphth.PhD

Shirley Oaks Hospital

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Mr Beng Ong

Consultant Ophthalmic Surgeon

MA (Cantab), BM BCh (Oxon), FRCOphth

Shirley Oaks Hospital

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