Dr. Don Steensma 465 W. Channel Islands Blvd, Port Hueneme, CA 805/486-3585

This patient was at risk for a possibly serious stroke

A 45 year Hispanic male came in for an eye examination.  He had no eye or vision complaints.  He wears reading glasses without problem.  Examination was uneventful until I looked inside his eyes.

Picture of eye with hypertension

His left eye reveals a very small retinal hemorrhage at the bottom of the picture.  There is also a small whitish area near the top of the picture.  This is referred to as cotton wool spots, and indicates a disruption of the adjacent tissues from a now resolving hemorrhage.  Both of these findings were first detected in this digital photograph of his eye.  Digital photographs can be enlarged to reveal small details that might not be noticed in standard examination techniques.

Further questioning revealed that he had stopped taking his blood pressure medicine about a month ago because he did not think he needed it.  He felt fine.  His blood pressure measured 220/115.  He was at risk of having a stroke. He was sent to an Urgent Care Center immediately.    We might have saved his life with that photograph.