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Inherited Retinal Disease

Inherited Retinal Disease and Visual Function Clinic

Vision loss and eye diseases can often affect multiple generations of a family. Genetic factors play a role in many kinds of eye disease, including those diseases that are the leading cause of blindness among infants, children and adults.

To help you understand your vision changes and protect your sight, we offer sophisticated testing and treatment for the management of retinal diseases. Our variety of retinal electrophysiology and visual function tests get to the root of vision problems by differentiating between retinal and optic nerve conditions.

Meet Dr. Benjamin Bakall, MD, PhD, the director of the Inherited Retinal Disease and Visual Function Clinic
Originally from Uppsala, Sweden, Dr. Bakall is dedicated to treating and monitoring medical retinal diseases ranging from more common conditions such as age-related macular degeneration and diabetic retinopathy to rare inherited retinal dystrophies

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Please allow two to four hours for your appointment. This time includes your initial vision and eye pressure check, electrophysiology or visual function testing (most patients undergo two to four tests) and imaging of the retina.
Examination and consultation with Dr. Bakall will be scheduled on a different day, allowing for analysis and interpretation of the performed tests.
Avoid wearing makeup and face lotion on the day of appointment. Please bring your distance and reading glasses and a paper prescription if you have had a recent evaluation. You will need relevant medical records, including copies of chart notes from eye examinations, visual fields, ERGs and genetic testing results. As part of your visit, we will take a detailed family history and construct a family tree. Bring names, ages and family history of relevant retinal diseases.

Your eyes may be dilated as part of the exam and your near vision may stay blurred for hours after the visit. Do not drive until the effects of pupil dilation have subsided. It should be okay to return to an indoor job, unless close-up visual tasks are a critical part of the work. Swimming is discouraged for the remainder of the day and contact lens wearers should wear glasses for the rest of the day.

Retinal Disease Tests Performed

A complete family and medical history as well as a comprehensive dilated exam are important first steps in diagnosing inherited retinal diseases; however, some of these conditions may be detected with a normal retinal exam. Further testing in our office is important to help make a correct diagnosis.