It has often been said that the eyes are the windows to one’s soul. Who would’ve known that they could also be windows into your overall health?

As it turns out, science says so. There have been various studies that identified the connection, with one test being able to detect signs of Alzheimer’s disease by imaging the retina located at the back of the eyeball. Researchers experimenting on mice detected amounts of the Alzheimer’s-causing beta amyloid plaques in the retina before they moved on to the brain. An ensuing autopsy of eight Alzheimer’s patients and examinations of five living dementia sufferers then presented more proof of the link, as the subjects also had significant amounts of amyloid plaques in their retinas.

Judging from the information above, Indianapolis eye care services should be at the top of anyone’s priorities now, and believe it or not, Alzheimer’s disease isn’t the only condition that can be detected with eye checkups. Here are a few more of them:

Diabetes – Undiagnosed diabetes can easily show up in a routine Indianapolis eye exam as either blood or a yellowish fluid which trickles out of microscopic vessels in the retina. Also known as diabetic retinopathy, this condition is clearly indicative of diabetes as the condition directly affects the small vessels in the retina. If left untreated, this can typically lead to a complete loss of vision.

Hypertension – Hypertension is infamously known as a “silent killer” for good reason: most of the time, it doesn’t have obvious symptoms. The danger lies with the fact that hypertension denotes a heart which pumps blood with too much force against the walls of arteries4; one thing that can be detected through an eye exam. Narrow or enlarged blood vessels, as well as small, flame-shaped hemorrhages are indicative of hypertension.

Cardiovascular Issues – Changes in widths of blood vessels in the eye, as well as irregular branching formations, are indicative of heart disease. In other occasions, a yellowish cornea or one with a yellow ring around it is a harbinger of high cholesterol. Cholesterol can build up in a vessel called the carotid artery and eventually break off, causing blood to constantly flow into the eye and get lodged—a phenomenon called a Hollenhorst plaque. If left untreated, the plaque can block off a major vessel and cause the person to go blind.

Do not let the aforementioned conditions get the best of you. If you visit a trusted clinic like Moody Eyes Downtown, even the slightest hints can be identified and you can nip the problem in the bud. Early detection is the key to combatting a disease.

(Source: What Your Eyes Say About Your Health, Boston.com, October 15, 2012)