South Penn Eye Care Logo
Hanover- 250 E Walnut St, Hanover, PA 17331
Westminster- JCK Center 332 140 Village Road Westminster MD 21157
Find Us On:
Hanover :
Contact our eye center at 717-632-6063 in Hanover, PA or 410-848-3860 in Westminster, MD for more information regarding our comprehensive eye services.

Services we offer in Hanover, PA & Westminster, MD

Do you have astigmatism, nearsightedness, farsightedness or another eye problem? Experience clear vision once again with help from South Penn Eye Care in Hanover, Pennsylvania and Westminster,MD.

From standard vision exams to cataract surgery, we offer comprehensive eye care services for the entire family in two convenient eye care centers. Our new Westminster office now offers a beautiful new optical boutique with a wide selection of the latest designer frames. Our expert optician will help you select the frames that complement your look and help you see clearly again.

A Qualified Team of Experts

Our doctors have extensive training and experience and provide excellent results for a wide range of eye problems, including nearsightedness, farsightedness, cataracts, glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy, dry eye and more. Dr. Baer is a board-certified eye physician and surgeon who provides medical and surgical eye care. Dr. Sauble and Dr. Beaver are optometrists who provide vision exams, custom contact lens fittings and glasses prescriptions as well as other medical eye care services.

Our Services include:

  • Care for Dry Eyes
  • Customized Contact Lens Fittings
  • Glasses Prescriptions
  • Optical Boutique in Westminster
Woman look in ophthalmoscope - Cataract Surgery in Hanover, PA
Contact our eye center at 717-632-6063 in Hanover, PA or 410-848-3860 in Westminster, MD for more information regarding our comprehensive eye services.

Diabetic Eye Care and Retinopathy

What is retinopathy?
Anyone who has diabetes may develop retinopathy, a condition where the diabetes weakens and damages the tiny blood vessels in a part of your eye called the retina. The retina is the layer of tissue in the eye that receives light and sends signals to the brain that are turned into pictures of what you see. The damage to these blood vessels may lead to vision loss over time. The damage may cause:
  • Leaking blood vessels
  • Closed blood vessels
  • Weak new blood vessels
Diabetics should get regular eye exams to monitor the health of their eyes.
What is retinopathy?
Factors that may increase your risk of retinopathy include:
  • High blood sugar (glucose) levels
  • High blood pressure
  • Having diabetes for a long time
  • Family history
What are the symptoms?
Retinopathy can lead to different types of vision loss. The type you get will depend on where in the retina the vessels are damaged and include:
  • Peripheral (side) vision loss
  • Decreased or lost central vision
  • "Cotton wool" spots
What are the types?
1. Nonproliferative diabetic retinopathy - the tiny capillaries in your retina leak and/or close, which over time can lead to moderate or severe vision loss if not treated. The stages of this type are:
  • Early nonproliferative - you have leakage outside the fovea, the center of the macula, which is the part of the retina that creates sharp central vision.
  • Macular edema due to focal leakage - you get areas of swelling and fluid deposits in the fovea
  • Macular edema due to diffuse leakage - the leakage spreads throughout the macula and causes swelling
2. Proliferative diabetic retinopathy - typically seen after you've had diabetes a long time. Weak vessels grow on your retina and cause vision problems. The stages of this type are:
  • Pre-proliferative - capillaries close and you get cotton wool spots
  • Proliferative - weak blood vessels grow because others have closed
  • Severe bleeding - weak new blood vessels burst and bleed into the vitreous
  • Traction retinal detachment - new blood vessels and scar tissue grow from the retina onto the vitreous, the clear, gel-like substance in the back of your eye. This can eventually cause detachment of your retina
How is diabetic retinopathy detected?
Dr. Baer or one of our optometrists will do the following to determine if you have diabetic retinopathy and if so, what type of retinopathy you have.
  • Record your history - find out how long you've had diabetes, what you do to monitor it, whether you have a family history of diabetes, and what medications you take
  • Measure your vision
  • Give you tests to detect diabetic retinopathy
  • Slit lamp examination - to provide a view of the inside of your eye
  • Ultrasound - painless way to use sound waves to look at the shape of the inside of your eye
  • Fluorescein angiography - a special photograph of your retina that helps classify your condition and record changes in the blood vessels of the retina
How is diabetic retinopathy treated?
In the early stages of diabetic retinopathy, no treatment is required unless macular edema is present. It is important to keep your blood sugar levels under control to reduce the likelihood of your eye problems progressing.

If you have proliferative retinopathy, laser surgery is used to shrink the abnormal blood vessels.

More severe bleeding will require a surgical procedure called a vitrectomy.

About Cataracts and Cataract Surgery

What is a cataract?
A cataract is a clouding of the eye's normally clear lens. The lens is the part of the eye that focuses light rays to produce a sharp image. When the lens becomes cloudy, light rays no longer pass through easily, and your vision becomes blurred.
What causes cataracts?
Cataracts are a normal part of aging but can also occur from eye injuries, or certain disease, medications or long term exposure to the sun.
How are cataracts treated?
Cataracts are often not treated surgically until your vision becomes so blurry you can no longer see well enough to perform your daily activities. There are no medications or drops to treat cataracts. The only way to remove them is through surgery. Cataract surgery removes the cloudy lens through a tiny incision and usually replaces it with an intraocular lens (IOL) implant.
What happens during cataract surgery?
Before surgery, Dr. Baer will perform a thorough eye exam. He will measure your eye to determine the correct power of the intraocular lens that will be placed in your eye. He or the surgical coordinator will talk to you about whether you should discontinue any medications before surgery, and the surgical coordinator will help you coordinate any testing you need before surgery. Make sure someone can drive you home after your surgery.

Before surgery, you may get eye drops and/or a mild sedative to help make you comfortable. A local anesthetic will numb your eye. The skin around your eye will be cleaned and sterile coverings will be placed around your head. A small incision is made in your eye using an operating microscope. Tiny surgical instruments break apart and remove the cloudy lens. An intraocular lens is implanted in your eye to replace the lens that was removed. Following a short stay in the recovery area, you may go home.
What happens after surgery?
Following surgery, you should be careful not to rub or press on your eye. Take eye drops as prescribed by Dr. Baer. Avoid driving and strenuous activities until instructed by Dr. Baer or the nurse. You can continue most daily activities.


What is glaucoma?
Glaucoma is a disease of the optic nerve, which carries images from the eye to the brain. The optic nerve is made up of bundles of nerve fibers, similar to an electric cable that contains many wires. When these fibers are damaged, they create blind spots that gradually get more significant over time.
What causes glaucoma?
Glaucoma is caused by a build up of too much pressure in the clear liquid that circulates inside the front part of your eye. This liquid is called the aqueous humor. A small amount of fluid is produced constantly while an equal amount flows out of the eye through a tiny drainage system. When the drainage area - called the drainage angle - is blocked, too much fluid builds up, pushes against the optic nerve, and causes damage.
What are the different types of glaucoma?
1.Chronic Open-Angle
The most common type of glaucoma in this country is called Chronic Open-Angle Glaucoma. This happens when the drainage angle of the eye gradually becomes less efficient as you age, leading to growing pressure and gradual optic nerve damage. In the early stages, you likely have no symptoms. As the optic nerve becomes more damaged, you may see blank spots in your field of vision, which gradually affects your daily activities.
2. Closed-Angle
This less common type of glaucoma is caused by the iris (the colored part of the eye) being formed too close to the drainage angle. You may not know you have this type of glaucoma until you get an attack that may include blurred vision, severe eye pain, headache, rainbow-colored halos around lights, and/or nausea and vomiting. You should immediately call your eye doctor or go to an emergency room.
Who is at risk?
The following factors increase your risk of getting glaucoma:
  • Increasing age
  • Elevated eye pressure
  • Family history of glaucoma
  • African or Spanish ancestry
  • Being farsighted or nearsighted
  • Past eye injuries
  • Systemic health problems such as diabetes
If you are at risk for developing glaucoma, you should get regular examinations by your eye doctor.
How is glaucoma detected?
Regular testing will help to detect glaucoma at an early stage. Recommended exam schedules are:
Ages 20 - 29 - those at high risk should be tested every 3-5 years; others should be tested once
Ages 30 -39 - high risk patients should get testing every 2-4 years; others should have two eye exams
Ages 40 - 64 - everyone should be tested every 2-4 years
Age 65 and older - get tested every 1 -2 years
A complete exam to detect glaucoma involves the following:
  • Tonometry - a test to measure your eye pressure
  • Gonioscopy - an inspection of the drainage angle
  • Ophthalmoscopy - evaluating for optic nerve damage
  • Visual field test - testing your peripheral vision
How is glaucoma treated?
Eyedrops, oral medication, laser surgery and surgery in an operating room are treatments that may be used to prevent further damage of the optic nerve. Your doctor cannot usually reverse damage that has already taken place. That makes early and periodic exams for those at risk critical.

Glaucoma eye drops need to be taken daily to lower your eye pressure. Never stop taking medication without the advice of your ophthalmologist. Let him know if you have any side effects and make sure that you inform him of other medications you take to prevent adverse interaction.

Laser surgery can involve a trabeculoplasty to change the drainage angle in open-angle glaucoma. A iridotomy is a laser procedure that creates a hole in the iris to improve drainage for patients with closed angle glaucoma.

About macular degeneration

What is Macular Degeneration?
Macular degeneration, the leading cause of vision loss for adults age 50 and older, is the loss of your central vision. It refers to the "macula" - the tiny part of your retina that's responsible for sharp central vision. Your ability to read fine print, drive or work on hobbies is usually affected, but your peripheral (side) vision is not affected.

The disease affects one eye before progressing to the second. It may progress quickly or gradually.

Wet macular degeneration - small blood vessels grow under the retina (the light-sensitive area at the back of your eye) and break, leaking into the surrounding area and causing distorted vision and scar tissue.
Who is at risk?
Your risk of getting macular degeneration increases with age. In fact, it is the leading cause of blindness in people age 75 and older. It may also be related to heredity, arteriosclerosis (hardening of the arteries) or eye trauma.
What are the symptoms?
The symptoms of macular degeneration include:
  • Distorted vertical lines - wavy-looking side of buildings or telephone poles
  • Blurry type - parts of a printed page look blurred or dark
  • Loss of color vision
  • Inability to see objects in the center of your field of vision
Symptoms usually get worse over time as the disease progresses.
How is it detected?
Your eye doctor can detect glaucoma from the following tests
  • Ophthalmoscopy - a magnifier and light are used to examine your retina after your eyes are dilated
  • Visual Fields test - evaluates your central and/or peripheral vision
  • Fluorescein Angiography - injection of fluorescein dye into the blood vessels of the eye to make them visible followed by photographs of the eyes
How is it treated?
At this point, no medications are available to treat the disease. Some cases of wet macular degeneration can be treated by laser therapy when caught early. The laser seals off the leaky blood vessels at the back of the eye with a beam of concentrated light.

Low vision aids may be helpful for you. You can use glasses, magnifiers, telescopes, lamps, closed circuit TVs and large print books to make the best use of their remaining vision. These aids can be found both at retail outlets and low vision centers. Dr. Baer or one of our optometrists will advise you about the best treatment for you.