All posts by tnretina

Healthy Vision

May – Healthy Vision Month

Did you know that approximately 37 million adults in America have age-related macular degeneration, cataract, diabetic retinopathy, or glaucoma?

All of these can cause visual impairment or blindness. However, recent studies show that making healthy choices and getting regular eye exams can help reduce a person’s risk of vision loss.

The American Academy of Ophthalmology is encouraging everyone to take charge of their eye health and help with preserving their eyesight.

Sports Eye Safety Month

If you or someone you know plays sports, you know they can be a lot of fun but the last thing you want to do is miss a game, especially if it’s because you’re hurt.  That is why we should always follow the rules and wear the right safety gear.

The American Academy of Ophthalmology has reported than more than 40% of eye injuries each year are related to sports or recreational activities which means an estimated 100,000 are hurt by sports-related injuries.  About 13,500 of these injuries result in permanent vision loss.

In support of Sports Eye Safety Month this April, the American Academy of Ophthalmology reminds athletes everywhere that the great majority of sports-related eye injuries can be avoided by simply wearing the proper protection.

Different activities and sports have different levels of risk for eye injury. Make sure that you’re using the right kind of eye protection for each activity. This spring, act for eye safety!

Motivation for Clinical Trials

Plato’s insight, “Necessity is the mother of invention,” often proves true, even in a clinic setting when problems arise that frustrate both physician and patient. These problems, however, can be a motivator for finding a solution through clinical research to the questions, “How can we do something better?” “How can we develop an approach or a therapy that doesn’t have a good approach to it yet? Should we use the tools that we have now, or do we need to develop a new tool?” These are the questions that the physicians at Southeastern Retina Associates ask often and do so through their very prolific clinical trials programs located throughout the region.

Current clinical trial practices like Southeastern Retina, as well as academic Centers, work together to answer clinical questions in a meaningful way.  One of our doctors said it best.  “It’s a way of contributing back to the standard of care all over the world.” Questions come from the clinic, we answer them in a thoughtful way, and then they go back to the clinic to make things better for our patients.”

COVID-19 General Info for Eyes

COVID-19 has been a fixture of our lives for almost a year now, dominating TV news coverage as well as our day-to-day decision making where we go, what we do, and who we do it with. Amazingly, there is still a lot we don’t know about this virus; while primarily a respiratory illness, the effects on other systems of the body have been a hot topic of study, including the eyes.

While a link between serious ocular disease and COVID-19 is yet to be determined, studies are still ongoing. With cases rising, proper precautions still need to be taken remember to wear a mask, socially distance, and avoid touching your face! 

February is Low Vision Awareness Month

February is Low Vision Awareness Month, and there is no better time to protect one of your most important senses – your eyesight. Learning about the causes and risk factors is the key to protecting your sight.

A few of these factors are increasing age, obesity, or having a family history of eye disease. 

Keep in mind that healthy habits like eating well and being active can lower your risk for diseases and conditions that can lead to eye or vision problems, like diabetes or high blood pressure.

Talk with your family members to find out if they have had any eye problems. Some eye diseases and conditions run in families, like age-related macular degeneration or glaucoma.

If you are worried you might be at risk for some eye diseases, talk to your doctor. You may be able to take steps to lower your risk.

Happy New Year

As we close this challenging year, the doctors of Southeastern Retina want to express our gratitude to our wonderful patients, referring physicians, staff, and friends.

Thank you for placing your trust in our team and best wishes for a happy and healthy 2021!

November is Diabetes Awareness Month

It is important to make healthy choices and take steps to manage your diabetes.  Diabetes can damage the body’s normal circulation and cause problems with circulation to your heart, brain, eyes, kidneys and legs.

The leading cause of blindness in the US is diabetic retinopathy (diabetic damage to the retina) with at least 50 percent of all diabetics developing diabetic retinopathy. In the early stages of diabetic retinopathy, you may not have symptoms.  This makes it essential for those with diabetes to have a comprehensive dilated eye exam at least once per year.  Your eye doctor will check for any signs of damage to the retina and optic nerve, including leaking blood vessels, swelling of the retina and growth of new vessels.  If your eye doctor detects significant diabetic retinal disease, they may refer you to Southeastern Retina Associates for treatment, and one of our retina specialists will evaluate you at our offices in Kingsport, Johnson City, Bristol, Knoxville, Maryville, Oak Ridge, Morristown, Crossville, Chattanooga, Athens, Abingdon, Dalton or Rome.

Please remember that controlling your blood sugar, blood pressure and cholesterol will help prevent the development and progression of diabetic retinopathy!

Southeastern Retina Associates Opens another Kingsport Location at 2236 East Stone Drive

We have exciting news for our patients and referring doctors! We have opened another Kingsport location at 2236 East Stone Drive, Kingsport, TN 37660. This additional location will help our retina specialists meet the growing demand for advanced retina care in Kingsport and the surrounding area. This facility, like our other facilities, has examination and treatment rooms supported by the highest level of technology to meet the needs of every patient.

To schedule an appointment at any of our greater Tri-Cities area or SW Virginia locations, call (423) 578-4364 or (888) 773-7287.

Southeastern Retina Coronavirus/COVID-19 Patient Update 4/30/2020

Southeastern Retina doctors and staff know this has been a challenging time for our patients and their families. We understand that anything affecting your eyes can be frightening. Our mission during the coronavirus/COVID-19 pandemic will continue to be to remain committed to preserving our patients’ vision and eye health.  Southeastern Retina Associates will do everything we can to serve our patients’ retinal conditions while protecting patients, families, staff, physicians, and our communities. 

All our offices have remained open to serve our patients with their emergent/urgent eye conditions. Over the next 4-5 weeks, we will be opening our regular schedules. While we are excited about welcoming more patients back to our clinics, keeping everyone safe and healthy remains our top priority. Our current COVID 19 safety protocols will remain in place. We have also initiated additional operational changes and wanted to share some of the changes you may see or experience

  • We are asking all patients to bring and wear a mask for their appointments. This additional precaution is to help protect the health of our patients and our team. All staff members will be wearing masks. If you need instruction on how to make a cloth face covering, Google “CDC face masks”, or visit the CDC coronavirus website at
  • We are limiting patient companions to one at most, preferably zero. We recommend all other guests wait in their vehicles.
  • We will be asking patients if they have concerning symptoms, travel, or exposure histories. If the answer is yes, we will ask them to return to their vehicle and we will call them with advice from their Southeastern Retina physician. If patients call about upcoming appointments, a Southeastern Retina representative may ask the same questions.
  • We will arrange to send you to the nearest local hospital/healthcare facility if we suspect you may have COVID-19. This is to provide immediate protection for you, your fellow patients, and our doctors and staff.
  • We will continue to ensure that our staff members are vigilant about their own health, including staying home the proper amount of time if they are ill or have been exposed to someone who is.
  • We are taking additional precautionary steps, following CDC guidelines, to ensure all our offices are sanitized regularly, and remain as clean as possible throughout each day.

We appreciate your patience and support as we ease into this new routine. As always, we’re available at the numbers below to assist you if you have any questions about upcoming appointments.

Chattanooga Area Offices – (423) 756-1002 or (800) 365-0105

Knoxville Area Offices – (865) 588-0811 or (888) 566-9738

Tri-Cities Area Offices – (423) 578-4364 or (888) 773-7287