Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Swiss Want Mandatory Eye Care Coverage for Children--Returned

"A petition submitted today to the Swiss federal government seeks the return of mandatory health insurance coverage for child eye care." Read more at WorldRadio.

Flying the ‘Flying Eye’

"When I fly back to the United States, I tell my family to give me an extra hour to get through customs and security," starts a NYTimes post. "Because of all the stamps on my passports,…it sometimes takes a while to explain to border agents that I'm a doctor returning…How I get from one country to another always raises questions…[I] fly out privately on the Orbis Flying Eye Hospital. That raises eyebrows with immigration officers in all countries." Read more.

New Molecular Pathway Discovered

The recent issue of the leading scientific journal Nature features a study about "a new molecular pathway used to suppress blood vessel branching in the developing retina - a finding with potential therapeutic value for fighting diseases of the retina and a variety of cancers." MedicalNewsToday has even more coverage: Read more.

Reindeer Eyes Love UV

"Researchers have discovered that the ultraviolet (UV) light that causes the temporary but painful condition of snow blindness in humans is life-saving for reindeer in the arctic." Read more here at MedicalNewsToday.

MDs Rush to Help Chicago In-Need

"West Side residents will receive important and free eye screenings on June 11 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the New Mount Pilgrim Missionary Baptist Church at 4301 W. Washington Blvd. Dr. Tamara R. Fountain, an ophthalmologist at Rush University Medical Center, and seven of her colleagues will conduct the screen that is part of a new initiative from the American Academy of Ophthalmology and the Illinois Association of Ophthalmology (IAO), EyeSmart EyeCheck, a program created to combat undetected eye impairments among at-risk populations in the United States," notes a post from

Monday, May 30, 2011

Pre-Schoolers Need Eyecare Says Study

"One in 16 preschoolers has visual impairment in at least one eye, suggests a new study of Australian kids," according to a Reuters post. "The majority of those children only had problems in one eye, and the most common causes were astigmatism, farsightedness and amblyopia, or 'lazy eye.'" Read more.

Viral Conjunctivitis Outbreak in Wales

"Public Health Wales have identified 25 cases of viral conjunctivitis in people associated with the Tegfan Resource Centre Care Home, Aberdare," reports BBCNews. "It is 'highly infectious,' causing a red watery eye with discomfort and blurred vision, lasting two weeks. Letters are being sent to schools, GPs, pharmacists and opticians in the area."

Register for National Opticians Conference

Opticians can register for the 2011 ABO/NCLE National Opticians Conference at The associations will hold the conference in Cincinnati's Duke Energy Convention Center Sept. 8-11.

Microwave Treatment to Replace Cornea Transplants

"Those hundreds of patients, who suffer from cornea problems, can happily bid goodbye to transplants," according to a Yahoo! News post. "In a new treatment specialists are using microwave probe to heat the cornea to around 60 degree Celsius, a procedure that corrects rugby-ball eye - the abnormal shape caused by keratoconus, reports Sky News."

Friday, May 27, 2011

Halos and Glare Common Problems Around the World

Halos and glare are common and bothersome symptoms, according to a study called Needs, Symptoms, Incidence, Global Eye Health Trends (NSight). Most patients experiencing halos and glare say it happens usually in the evening or late at night. The symptoms were commonly associated with bright lights, headlights, being in the dark and nighttime driving. The study surveyed 3,800 spectacle- and contact lens-corrected subjects, 15 to 65 years of age, from China, Korea, Japan, France, Italy, United Kingdom, and United States. See results of the study.

Robotic Vision Aid Being Developed at UCLA

"For the visually impaired, navigating city streets or neighborhoods has constant challenges," notes MedicalNewsToday. University of Southern California engineering researchers are "developing a robot vision-based mobility aid for the visually impaired….The need is clear. According to the World Health Organization, 39 million people worldwide are totally blind and a much larger number, 284 million people, are visually impaired. In the United States, according to the American Foundation for the Blind, 109,000 visually impaired people use long white canes to get around. Guide dogs? About 7,000 nationwide." Read more.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Vision Plan in Trouble

Apparently the vision plan for Canadian GM retirees could collapse from lack of funding, says union officials. "The creation of a health care trust to finance dental care, vision care and other benefits for retirees was demanded by the federal and Ontario governments in 2009 when General Motors Corp., sought a bailout as it was on the verge of financial collapse," goes the post on CTV's website. "The union agreed to negotiate such a plan. GM agreed to put up $1.8-billion to finance the fund, Mr. Buckley and Leslie MacDonald, a member of the retirees' steering committee negotiating with GM Canada said Wednesday." Retirees believe that $1.8 billion will not fund the plan. Read more.

NC’s Board of Opticians Investigating Illegal CLs

"North Carolina's Board of Opticians plans to investigate stores in the Charlotte area where Channel 9's crews found cosmetic contact lenses being sold illegally," goes the post on the tv station's website. "Eyewitness News first reported on the dangers of those lenses seven years ago, and now they're wildly popular again. For Felisa Ann Brown, it started with a trip to the flea market. 'I just asked for contacts, and they just sold them to me,' Brown said." Read and see more.

A Story of Yoga and Retinal Detachment

"One week before I left for India, I went and got new contact lenses. I noticed that my vision seemed off in my left eye but I thought it was my contact lenses." That's the way Jennifer Repo starts her HuffingtonPost article about yoga and retinal detachment. "I landed in Delhi and the adventure began…. As the trip progressed, my vision started to get worse in that eye. I kept thinking that maybe it was my prescription changing or that I needed to get bifocals. I continued to traipse around India, doing yoga, including all sorts of inversions!" Read more.

25% of Parents Believe 3D Bad for Kids’ Vision

According to a new study regarding attitudes toward 3D content, one quarter of parents erroneously believe that watching 3D content – such as movies, television shows and video games – will harm their child's health and/or vision. VSP® Vision Care, the 56-million-member, not-for-profit vision benefits and services company, commissioned Knowledge Networks to conduct the study. Read more.

Blind Echolocate with Their Former Vision Center

"Everybody has heard about echolocation in bats and dolphins," starts the MedicalNewsToday post. "These creatures emit bursts of sounds and listen to the echoes that bounce back to detect objects in their environment. What is less well known is that people can echolocate, too. In fact, there are blind people who have learned to make clicks with their mouths and to use the returning echoes from those clicks to sense their surroundings. Some of these people are so adept at echolocation that they can use this skill to go mountain biking, play basketball, or navigate unknown environments." Read more.

“Proof” That Tinted Specs Offer Migraine Relief

"Precision tinted lenses have been used widely to reduce visual perceptual distortions in poor readers, and are increasingly used for migraine sufferers, but until now the science behind these effects has been unclear. Now research published in the journal Cephalalgia, published by SAGE, uses functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) for the first time to suggest a neurological basis for these visual remedies." Read more.

Indy Driver Wearing Rast Sunwear

It's Memorial Day Weekend and it's Indy 500 time in Indianapolis where driver Danica Patrick was photographed wearing "sunglasses from the William Rast Eyewear collection while preparing for the …500…Patrick, who holds the record for the highest finish by a woman in the 100 year history of the Indianapolis 500 by placing 3rd in 2009, is also known for her fashion and sense of style. Off the track, the former model was kept well protected from the sun in her new metal aviators (Style WRS 2009) from William Rast Eyewear in matte gunmetal, $150 (http://www.williamrast.com)," according to the racing site FlagWorld.
Read and see more.

Apparently Gucci Eyewear Could Save the Planet

It was difficult writing that headline with seriousness. It does seem that Gucci has convinced the fashion world that its new Safilo eyewear line could save the planet: "Not the first name that springs to mind when we think of eco friendly fashion, but Gucci are showing their commitment to sustainability with a new range of 'green' glasses." That's from Afroboudoir. Similar copy appeared in WWD. "The company are already working to develop a prototype made from an alternative to plastic, and this coming August will introduce four eyewear styles made from sustainable materials that contain a much higher percentage of naturally occurring ingredients." Read more and see images.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Vuzix Introduces New Monocular Video Eyewear

New monocular video eyewear from Vuzix Corp. reportedly "allows both real-world viewing and viewing of computer-generated information," says UPI. "The Tac-Eye ST is a ruggedized monocular see-through, head-mounted display for defense, security, surveillance and industrial applications. Designed to clip-on to safety glasses or helmets, the monocular display will improve the user's situational awareness over current monocular models." Read more.

GlassesUSA Finds New Market

GlassesUSA.com is teaming up with universities, colleges, and research institutions in strategic partnerships that will combine collaborative efforts to strengthen the ties between optical stores and vision research, according to the company. Aside from offering prescription eyewear to university staff, students, and alumni at a lower cost than available through staff insurance, GlassesUSA.com is also using this partnership to introduce these individuals to the online world of eyeglasses. Read more.

Alcon Wins Patent Suit against Apotex

"Novartis announced today, that two affiliates of its Alcon Division, Alcon Laboratories, Inc. and Alcon Research, Ltd. have prevailed in a US patent infringement lawsuit filed along with Kyowa Hakko Kirin Co. Ltd. ('Kyowa') against Apotex, Inc. and Apotex Corp. (collectively, 'Apotex') in the US District Court for the Southern District of Indiana," according to a Reuters
post. Read more.

Vistakon Wooes Teenagers with Contest

Vistakon, a division of Johnson & Johnson Vision Care, Inc., launched its "Acuvue 1 Day Contest." Five winners will fly to Los Angeles where they will meet and be mentored by one of five top teen icons, including musician Joe Jonas, all-American actress Meaghan Martin, singing phenom Charice, world champion runner Allyson Felix and actor Sterling Knight. The five lucky winners will return to Los Angeles for a teen awards event, and a one-year supply of 1·Day Acuvue Moist Brand Contact Lenses. Read more.

Luxottica Expands Its International Foothold

Luxottica Group S.p.A. reportedly will take full ownership of Multiopticas Internacional S.L. by the middle of the summer. Luxottica already owns a 40% stake in Multiopticas Internacional, which owns more than 470 eyewear stores operating under the Opticas GMO, Econopticas and Sun Planet retail brands in Chile, Peru, Ecuador and Colombia.

Americans Aren’t Protecting Their Eyes

Americans are taking part in their favorite outdoor activities, but many overlook a simple safety and health precaution -- protecting their eyes with sunglasses. According to a 2011 national survey conducted by N3L Optics®, only 66 percent of adults wear sunglasses consistently when they are outdoors, and only half of those age 18-24 do so. Read more.

Monday, May 23, 2011

CT Optician Gets Attention

"Watching Jon Ackley ply his craft can be a little manic at times. As an optometrist with more than 40 years of experience in the business, Ackley knows what he's doing. He's a throwback – to the times when business owners knew their customers by name, when customer service meant more than simply a component of a glossy Madison Avenue slogan and when a businessperson wore about a dozen different hats." That's how WestEnd starts a post about the Bridgeport, CT, optician Jon Ackley.

Californians Going Crazy about Eye Care Co-Location

"A recent article in this paper suggested a 'giant international conspiracy' in the bipartisan effort to preserve the co-location model of eye care in California," so writes Toni Atkins for the OaklandTribune. Read more about how some Californians are confusing the facts surrounding eye care.

Computer Checks Vision for Kids

"In a major breakthrough, scientists from the University of Manchester have created a computer game that actually checks vision of kids as young as four suffering from glaucoma, drug side-effects, brain tumors and other conditions." So reports HealthJockey. Read.

USA Field Hockey Chanting: Rudy! Rudy! Rudy!

And if you want to sell eyewear to field hockey player, you might want to as well. Read more. "USA Field Hockey is pleased to announce a partnership with Rudy Project - Technically Cool Eyewear and Gear, as the Official Eyewear/Rx Supplier and Exclusive Bike and Ski Helmet of USA Field Hockey." That's the word on the USAFieldHockey post.  "'Rudy Project is a top notch company with a great history of supporting Olympic sport,' said Steve Locke, executive director of USA Field Hockey. 'Not only are they great supporters, but they design and sell the highest level of sunglasses and helmets found globally. We are so proud to be associated with Rudy Project and their staff, and we encourage hockey folks to take a close look at their product in the months to come on both our website and FH Life magazine. You will see amazing products with amazing discounts for USA Field Hockey members.'"

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Luxottica Tries to Rewrite California Optical Law

"Slapped down by courts, an international corporate giant is spending a pile of money in Sacramento to change a state law so it can exert better control over its market -- and you need not even buy its glasses to see it happening." So reports the San Jose MercuryNews. "Some might say that Italy-based Luxottica -- the world's largest eyewear company, with almost 60,000 employees worldwide and net sales of almost $7.7 billion in 2010 -- is making a spectacle of itself as it pushes for AB 778, which would change state laws governing the business relationships between doctors who test your eyes and the companies that make your glasses." Read more.

Brit Looking to Distribute 200 Million Pair of Eyeglasses for Free

"A British atomic physicist is liaising with the World Bank on a revolutionary project to distribute spectacles to 200 million children in developing countries. Users will be able to adjust the glasses to their own personal prescription without help from an optician," starts the story about self-adjusting eyewear in the Guardian. 'All users have to do is look at a reading chart and adjust the glasses until they can see letters clearly,' said Professor Joshua Silver, who was last week shortlisted for a 2011 European inventor award at a ceremony in Budapest. "'lasses like these are perfect for use in the third world. We can send them to schools where teachers can direct pupils to set their spectacles to suit each one's vision. It is as simple as that.' Silver estimates that more than a billion adults in developing nations have poor eyesight. This seriously limits their education and employment prospects. He is now working with the World Bank and the Dow Corning Corporation – which makes the silicone materials used in his revolutionary glasses – to supply 200 million pairs of self-adjusting spectacles to schoolchildren in Africa and Asia. Ultimately, he hopes a billion pairs of the glasses will be made.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Helping Women in the Developing World See

"In countries where women are raped and killed in staggering numbers, a walk home from school can be a matter of life and death. Perhaps worse still if they have poor vision, lack access to corrective glasses, and must travel home in the dark." Read more on the HuffingtonPost.

B&L and Lions Club Fund Research

Bausch + Lomb and Lions Clubs International Foundation (LCIF) recently awarded the Tianjin Eye Hospital a $150,000 grant to finance a specialized pediatric cataract training initiative. The grant is made possible through the Pediatric Cataract Initiative (PCI), which identifies, funds and promotes innovative methods for overcoming visual impairments caused by pediatric cataracts. "There may be as many as 40,000 children in China suffering from pediatric cataract, a condition that is treatable, and in some cases, preventable," said Joe Barr, O.D., M.S., F.A.A.O, vice president, Global Clinical and Medical Affairs and Professional Services, Vision Care, Bausch + Lomb. Read more.

New Approach to Vision Research

A new vision research center based in Philadelphia reportedly will foster regional, national and global collaborations among a diverse group of exceptional clinicians and researchers working to better diagnose, treat and prevent visual diseases. Its name: WillsVision Research Center at Jefferson, created by the Wills Eye Institute and Thomas Jefferson University. It will represent more than 15 scientific disciplines. The multidisciplinary team approach will draw upon extensive knowledge and outstanding clinical expertise in the fields of ophthalmology, oncology, pathology, neurology, and endocrinology, to name a few. Read more.

“It Takes A Village” to Help Visual Impaired Elderly

"For older adults, a fall can pose a serious health risk. Add in blindness or visual impairment, and the possibility of a fall increases," starts the post from MedicalNewsToday. "The approach of "it takes a village" can be applied to reducing the risk of a fall. Cross-disciplinary fall prevention programs that address multiple risk factors have been shown to be effective. An article in the current issue of the journal Insight: Research and Practice in Visual Impairment and Blindness describes an integrated risk management program with multiple interventions." Read more.

BBB Tells Acuvue Some Claims Bleary

Here's the start of the PConSuperSite post: "The National Advertising Division of the Council of Better Business Bureaus determined that Johnson & Johnson Vision Care can support certain superiority claims in advertisements for Acuvue Oasys but recommended that the manufacturer discontinue other claims, according to a press release from the industry group. 'The claims at issue were challenged by CIBA Vision Corp.,' according to the National Advertising Division (NAD) press release. After review of one advertisement, the 'NAD determined that Johnson & Johnson Vision Care's (JJVC's) superiority claims were adequately supported by evidence in the record,' referring to a JJVC comparative clinical study, according to the press release."

Pro Fit Optix Has “New” Frame Order Program

In the case you missed it, as we did: "Pro Fit Optix introduced a new program for ordering frames, lenses and add-ons at International Vision Expo, according to a company press release. The program offers 60 private label frame styles expanded with fashion lines from Reebok, Nigura and Michalsky, and a full range of high-tech ophthalmic lenses produced with the latest free-form technology, all supported by a worldwide network of fabrication labs and optical manufacturers connected through a proprietary system called SmartSoftware, the release said." That's the word from PConSuperSite.

Midwest ECP Turns to Social Networks to Help Patients

The Chicago-based Rosin Eyecare is turning to social networks to answer patients' questions. The 17-location practice says that doctors can provide an educated voice on these platforms, and their presence will help improve Rosin's customer service. The practice is working with RealTime Marketing to develop a social marketing campaign. Read more.

Vitamin A and AMD—More Evidence

"Slowing down the aggregation or 'clumping' of vitamin A in the eye may help prevent vision loss caused by macular degeneration, research from Columbia University Medical Center has found." That's the lead for a new MedicalNewsToday post.

TV News Catches Illegal CL Sales

"WSB-TV 2 Action News in Atlanta recently uncovered several instances of theatrical contact lenses and other color contacts being sold illegally in the Atlanta area," according to the ContactLensHeadlines
post. You can see the video here.

ECPs Help Local Artist

From the moment Jerome Walker held his first pencil, he drew on paper and even walls. Even though he was visually impaired, he succeeded. His art was shown in galleries in Chicago, London and Paris. Recently the San Diego Art Institute recognized one of his paintings in the Regional Juried Show. The artist's dedication read: "This painting is gratefully dedicated to Donald and Darlene Shiley and Dr. Weinreb and Dr. Schanzlin of the Shiley Eye Center in La Jolla, without whose help this painting (and possibly the artist himself) might never have seen the light of day." Read more.

People Avoiding Eyecare. It’s the $$$

"A large number of people who have problems with their eyesight don't visit eye doctors because of the cost or because they don't have health insurance that covers eye care, a CDC survey shows," according to a WebMD news post. "The survey shows that others don't get regular eye exams because they don't think they have eye problems, or for a variety of other reasons, such as having to travel too far to see doctors or specialists or having no transportation to get to their offices." Read more. The study doesn't analyze the potential marketing opportunity for eye care providers. A good marketing program could accomplish two goals: help more individuals and generate more traffic.

Get Game with Strobe Eyewear

Want to improve your tennis game? Help your kid hit a baseball? Try a pair of eyewear strobes. That's the resulting of a study posted on MedicalNewsToday. Can't promise benefits to your golf game:

Strobe-like eyewear designed to train the vision of athletes may have positive effects in some cases…The eyewear has lenses that alternate between clear and opaque states, producing a strobe experience. Nearly 500 people participated in more than 1,200 training sessions and … completed visual-motor tasks, such as catching and throwing a ball, as well as computer-based tests. Once the eyewear is removed, the theory goes, the brain's visual processing has been trained to see the ball's path more clearly. Read more.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

CooperVision Gets Make-Over

Contact lens manufacturer CooperVision unveiled a new brand identity. Siegel+Gale, which created the new design, claims CV's new visual identity will help position the company for continued growth and improve worldwide recognition. CV's brand platform is said to challenge industry conventions and to capture CV's "true spirit." Whatever that means. One change, CV's promise. Now it's, "We bring a refreshing perspective that creates real advantages for customers and wearers."

Amerigroup Funds Eye Care Program in Virginia

The Amerigroup Foundation will provide more than $150,000 in support of the delivery of health care services to uninsured Virginians through the Remote Area Medical Volunteer Corps (RAM), according to a press release. Most of the funds will help finance health care in southwest Virginia and for the 2011 Remote Area Medical Health Expedition in Wise County. Organizations receiving funds include The Health Wagon, the Virginia Dental Association Foundation and The University of Virginia Office of Telemedicine. RAM, a nonprofit, volunteer medical relief corps, serves remote and impoverished areas of the United States and abroad. In Virginia, the Virginia Dental Association Foundation (VDAF), a local free clinic, The Health Wagon, and The University of Virginia annually team up with RAM to spearhead a three-day event, providing eye, dental and medical care to the uninsured and underinsured in the region.

AMD Treatments Compared in NEJM

The New England Journal of Medicine released highly anticipated one-year results of the ongoing "Comparisons of Age-Related Macular Degeneration Treatments Trials" (CATT). Read more here.

Verizon Foundation Gives $100,000 to Sight Savers America

Sight Savers America and the KidCheck Program, which provides health screenings for children from kindergarten through high school, received a $100,000 from the Verizon Foundation.  The grant will fund the hardware and software needed to make the process paperless.  The grant will fund a repository where the program can store date. To date, KidCheck has been implemented in more than 35 Alabama school systems—with 20 Alabama two- and four-year nursing schools--have used te KidCheck program.  The children pass through eight to 10 stations where nurses and nursing students screen for height and weight; heart, blood pressure and respiratory rates; and to provide eye, ear, nose and throat exams.  Sight Savers provides case-managed follow-up care for children failing the vision screening.  

Scientists Looking to Cure Illness That Cause Premature Blindness in Babies

ran the following post: "Scientists from the School of Medicine, Dentistry and Biomedical Sciences at Queen's University Belfast are teaming up to develop a cure to an illness that can lead to blindness in premature babies, thanks to funding from children's charity Action Medical Research."

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

VisionWeb Giving Out Royalties to OAA and State Assn.’s

VisionWeb's OAA Royalty Program provides royalties to the OAA and state associations for the orders that OAA members place on VisionWeb, according to the VisionWeb website. These royalties will be used to help support programs and defray membership costs. All OAA members who use VisionWeb are eligible to participate. To register, simply log in to www.visionweb.com and click the OAA Royalty Program registration button. Once you register, all orders placed by any member of your staff will count toward your practice's order total for the annual earning period, which runs from April – March each year. To register click here.

PA Team Providing Eye Care in Belize

A team from Kremer Eye Center is traveling to Belize City, Belize to provide essential eye care June 18-25, 2011.  Fifty patients will receive complimentary cataract surgery. Led by surgeon George Pronesti, M.D., anesthesiologist Don Sivick, M.D., surgical technician Carol Szweda, Brydie Calkin, RN and Carol Hughes, RN, the team arranged all necessary medical supplies and is volunteering for The Belize Council for the Visually Impaired. Read more.

Ohio ODs Help Infants for Free

An overwhelming number of children have eye and vision problems, and so Ohio optometrists are providing no-cost, comprehensive eye and vision assessments for infants between six to 12 months of age through a program called InfantSEE. It's a public health program developed by Optometry Cares, the AOA Foundation, and Johnson & Johnson's Vistakon. "When a vision-impaired infant wears a pair of glasses or receives much needed eye-care, a world of possibility appears," said Senator Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio). "That's why the AOA Foundation's work is so important for Ohio families seeking to create a better life for their children." Read more.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

It’s Healthy Vision Month But Who Cares?

Americans don't care May is Healthy Vision Month according to the National Institutes of Health and the National Eye Institute. Why? They take their eyesight for granted, according to NEI's studies. For example, in surveys conducted the same year by the NEI's National Eye Health Education Program and the Lions Club International Foundation, American adults noted that the loss of eyesight would have an extreme impact on their daily lives — though more than 25 percent said their last eye examination was more than two years prior, and 9 percent had never had an eye exam, according to a NEI press release.

The release also notes that approximately 14 million Americans are currently visually impaired because of eye diseases and disorders. This number is growing as boomers age. Of adults older than 40, more than 4 million have diabetic eye complications, more than 2 million have glaucoma, and more than 1.75 million have age-related macular degeneration. The prevalence of nearsightedness alone has increased 66 percent in the past 30 years, according to a 2009 NEI study.

Recent NEI investigations indicate many eye diseases affect particular ethnic groups more often than others. African-Americans, for example, have about a 12 percent risk of glaucoma, more than twice the risk of non-Hispanic white Americans. Both Asian-Americans and Hispanics have a risk of about 6.5 percent. In another NEI study, researchers found that Latinos have higher incidence rates of visual impairment, blindness, diabetic eye disease, and cataracts than non-Hispanic whites. The same scientists previously showed that more than 60 percent of eye disease in Latinos remains undiagnosed.

Online ECP Terror Pleads Guilty

"The online eyeglasses seller [Vitaly Borker of DecorMyEyes] who terrified customers in the hopes of creating buzz about his Web site, and raising its profile in Google searches, pleaded guilty on Thursday to two counts of sending threatening communications, one count of mail fraud and one count of wire fraud," reports the New York Times. For additional stories about DecorMyEyes, click here. "Sentencing is scheduled for Sept. 16. Government prosecutors said that under the guidelines, Mr. Borker should spend at least five and perhaps as many as six and a half years in prison. Mr. Borker's lawyer, Dominic Amorosa, said he expected a fraction of that sentence — a year to 18 months," concludes the Times post.


Rapid Stimulation Improves Perception

Scientists have shown—for the first time in humans—that slow visual stimulation will impair perception and rapid visual stimulation improves it. See the full story at MedicalNewsToday.

Rural Americans Go to ER’s for Eye Care

MedicalNewsToday reports that "rural Americans were five times more likely than urban residents to be treated in emergency departments for eye injuries in 2008, according to the latest News and Numbers from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality."

Scientists Regenerate Retinas

"Scientists from Schepens Eye Research Institute are the first to regenerate large areas of damaged retinas and improve visual function using IPS cells (induced pluripotent stem cells) derived from skin." So starts the story on MedicalNewsToday.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Spring Conference Attendees Give Thumbs Up

At the end of each seminar, ABO/NCLE asks attendees to evaluate it based on four questions: Did the course further your knowledge/skill, were the learning expectations of the course met, was the course a worthwhile investment of time, was the course presented without specific product bias, would you recommend this course, and finally was the instructor organized and informative. As you can see from just one course, “In the Beginning: Embryonic Eye Development,” the presenters at the OpticalCEU's 2011 Spring Conference for Continuing Education succeeded as far as attendees were concerned. You can see the results for all the courses presented by clicking Evaluations of OpticalCEU's Spring 2011 Conference for Continuing Education.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Bioptic Telescope May Not Impede Wider View

"A study by scientists at Schepens Eye Research Institute shows that a bioptic telescope on one lens of a pair of glasses used to magnify traffic signs and lights may not prevent the wider view of the road with the second eye." So goes the lead sentence of a MedicalNewsToday post.

CL Wearers Are Non-Compliant in All Steps

reports that "contact lens wearers are significantly non-compliant in virtually all the active steps involved in soft contact lens wear, including hand washing, case hygiene, lens disinfection and following the recommended lens replacement schedule, according to new data on patient attitudes and behaviors regarding compliance with soft contact lenses."

Unilens Vision Hooks Up with VisionWeb

Independent ECPs reportedly now will have the ability to browse, place, and track C-Vue disposable contact lens orders from Unilens Vision though the online portal called VisionWeb. That's the announcement that has been appearing on the web.

Did CL’s Help Harper Hit a Grand Slam?

"Whether it's because Bryce Harper tweaked his eyesight with contact lenses and a training program about three weeks ago or simply because he's finding his comfort level, the baseball is a giant beachball floating toward the plate begging to be crushed." So goes the lead sentence in the WashingtonPost
story about the minor league player.

OAA Teams Up with Optimum Optical

The Opticians Association of America has teamed up with OptimumOptical to offer online, continuing education courses. They are offering 13 courses. For more information, go to www.optimumoptical.com/oaa.

Problems with Blogger

Blogger had problems for the past two days. We lost some of our postings. We apologize for the inconvenience.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

OAA Teams Up with Optimum Optical to Offer Online CEUs

There are 13 online, continuing education courses for opticians offered through a partnership between OptimumOptical and the Opticians Association of America. It's based at this website: www.optimumoptical.com/oaa.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Davis Vision Launches New Website

Davis Vision has a new commercial website and mobile site with updated features and a fresh look to reflect the company's branding strategy and create an enhanced experience for members and clients, says the company's press release.Visitors to the site reportedly will find new content and photography as well as more user-friendly features like an easy contact page and improved navigation. Links to three new videos offer a better understanding of Davis Vision, an overview of open enrollment and the state-of-the-art ophthalmic laboratories, and a detailed history of the company. The site also includes updated content that includes an explanation of laser vision correction.

Biotic Telescope on Lens May Not Prevent Wider View

"A study by scientists at Schepens Eye Research Institute shows that a bioptic telescope on one lens of a pair of glasses used to magnify traffic signs and lights may not prevent the wider view of the road with the second eye," according to a post on MedicalNewsToday. "The study results, which will be published in the May 2011 Archives of Ophthalmology, are the first evidence that--under more realistic viewing conditions than in earlier studies--the second eye can detect objects in the area obscured by the magnification effect of the telescope (called the ring scotoma)."

CL Being Sold on the Streets of Manila

The Philippines Food and Drug Administration reported recently that vendors along the streets of Manila are selling unregistered contact lenses. Imagine?

Monday, May 9, 2011

California May Get Own Health Care--Including Vision

"Democrats in California have revived a bill that would create a single-payer health care system that would provide health care for everyone, including illegal residents," says an SBSun post. "It would replace President Barack Obama's health care reform legislation with a more comprehensive system - one its advocates say would cost everyone no more than what we already pay."

Online CL Retailers Growing Popular

More consumers are making at least one on-line contact lens retailer popular. "Coastal Contacts Inc, the world's largest online retailer of eyeglasses and contact lenses, became Facebook's largest vision care brand this week (May 9, 2011), hitting the 500,000 fans mark," according to the company's press release. "Coastal Contacts Inc has seen the number of Facebook fans of its family of international eyewear brands increase from just under 10,000 in August 2010 to 500,000 - an increase of 5,000%."

Risk Factors for Myopia and Hyperopia in Pre-Schoolers

"Age, race and maternal smoking are associated with the development of myopia and hyperopia in preschool children." That was a recent post on the OSNSupersite. "'Given that both myopia and hyperopia are risk factors for the development of amblyopia and strabismus, these risk indicators should be considered when developing guidelines for screening and intervention in preschool children,' Mark S. Borchert, MD, and colleagues said in the poster presented at the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology meeting."

Examining Your Visual Google

The "ability to recognize target objects surrounded by distracters is one of the remarkable functions of our nervous system" and a function recently studied, announced a post on MedicalNewsToday. "'Visual search is an important task for the brain. Surprisingly, even in a complex task like detecting an object in a scene with distracters, we find that people's performance is near optimal. That means that the brain manages to do the best possible job given the available information,' said Dr. Wei Ji Ma, assistant professor of neuroscience at Baylor College of Medicine. A report on research by him and colleagues from other institutions appears online in the journal Nature Neuroscience.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Optician Becomes Billionaire. Yes with a B!

"Specsavers founder Dame Mary Perkins has become Britain’s first self-made woman billionaire.
Dame Mary, who set up the High Street opticians with husband Doug Perkins in 1984, has seen their wealth grow to £1.1billion this year, ­according to the Sunday Times Rich List." That's the post on the British newspaper the Mirror. "The fortune of Mary, 67, and Doug, 68, shot up 42 per cent in the past year, putting their Guernsey family among Britain’s 73 billionaires."

This Ain't Eyewear; It's a System

Imagine holding onto an eyewear system described as follows: "The...communications system comprises a set of eyewear units, an...data processing system, and a wireless system. Each eyewear unit has a set of sensors and a display. The set of eyewear units is capable of receiving user input and is capable of presenting information to a set of users of the set of eyewear units. The...data processing system is capable of receiving the user input and sending the information to the set of eyewear units in response to receiving the user input from the set of eyewear units. The wireless system is...capable of sending the user input from the set of eyewear units to the...data processing system and sending the information to the set of eyewear units." That's the description of a patent recently issued to Boeing. Read more in AvionicsIntelligence.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Nanoflowers Helps People with AMD

"University of Oregon researcher Richard Taylor is on a quest to grow flowers that will help people who have lost their sight, such as those suffering from macular degeneration, to see again," according to MedicalNewsToday. "These flowers are not roses, tulips or columbines. They will be nanoflowers seeded from nano-sized particles of metals that grow, or self assemble, in a natural process - diffusion limited aggregation. They will be fractals that mimic and communicate efficiently with neurons."

Friday, May 6, 2011

Military Doc's Cutting Away

"'We're the busiest refractive surgery center [Lackland Air Force Base, Texas] in the Air Force, performing upward of 4,000 surgeries in a year here, which is enormous amount of surgery,' said Lt. Col. (Dr.) Charles Reilly, the consultant to the surgeon general for refractive surgery. 'Our other big mission...is research. We're actually trying to push the boundaries of what is known and not known about laser vision correction and what the potential is for the future in Air Force refractive surgery,' according to a report on the U.S. Air Force's official website.

California Optician Robbed

"Morgan Hill police are looking for three men who snatched a bag full of designer glasses from an eye care store on Thursday afternoon," according to MercuryNews.com. "Two of the men walked into Your Eye's Image inside the shopping center at 419 Vineyard Town Center Way around 1:40 p.m. One of the men walked up to the clerk and gestured toward his waistband like he had a gun -- although no weapon was seen -- while the second man swept about $8,000 worth of name brand eye glasses into a bag."

ECP Accused of Molesting a Child

9News out of Denver reports the following:
"A family's claim their daughter was sexually assaulted in an eye clinic inside his store wasn't reported to local police. Now, Walmart admits the store manager is still working for the company, despite its initial claim to the contrary." Read more.

Age Does Not Determine CL Compliance

After ten years of contact lens wear, patients are equally successful wearing contact lenses whether they were first fitted as children or as teenagers, new research shows.  The study found that whether first fit as a child or as a teen, current wearers were similarly comfortable and compliant, and reported similar frequency of prior adverse events while wearing contact lenses.  The findings were presented today at The Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO) meeting. "A growing body of research has already established the many benefits and safety of pediatric contact lens wear," says co-author Jeffrey Walline, O.D., Ph.D., Ohio State University College of Optometry.  "This study further demonstrates that fitting children at younger ages has no harmful long-term effects."

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Facts about the World Vision Health

Here are a few of the key points from a World Health Organization's analysis:

  • Some284 million people are visually impaired worldwide: 39 million are blind and 245 million have low vision.
  • Approximately 90% of the world's visually impaired live in developing countries.
  • Globally, uncorrected refractive errors are the main cause of visual impairment but in middle and low-income countries cataracts remain the leading cause of blindness.
  • The number of people visually impaired from infectious diseases has greatly reduced in the last 20 years.
  • 80% of all visual impairment can be avoided or cured.

More Studies Needed for OK Lenses

"Further studies will be needed before experts can confirm the effectiveness of new orthokeratology (OK) contact lenses, which have been shown to slow or halt the progression of myopia in tests," according to a post on ContactLenses.co.uk. "With myopia being one of the most widespread eye problems in the world, it is hoped that the latest study, led by Professor Helen Swarbrick at the UNSW Research in Orthokeratology Group, will soon lead to the development of commercial lenses to help sufferers. However, she told Science Alert that it may be some time before the lenses make it onto the market, as tests need to be carried out to determine factors such as the recommended length of wear, with the findings then published in a scientific journal."

Americans Ignored Sunwear

Around the world, sight is valued as the most important of the five senses, along with a strong belief that good vision positively impacts quality of life.(1) However, while 85 percent of Americans recognize that ultraviolet (UV) rays can damage their eyes, only 65 percent wear sunglasses for protection and even fewer (39 percent) make sure their children wear sunglasses. Read more. For more detailed information, review the executive summary of the Vision Care Institutue's global survey.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Human Eye Beats Camera--Lids Down

"The human eye long ago solved a problem common to both digital and film cameras: how to get good contrast in an image while also capturing faint detail," starts the post on MedicalNewsToday. "Nearly 50 years ago, physiologists described the retina's tricks for improving contrast and sharpening edges, but new experiments by neurobiologists at University of California, Berkeley and the University of Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha show how the eye achieves this without sacrificing shadow detail. These details will be published tomorrow in the online, open access journal PLoS Biology."

Impact of CL Non-Compliance Studied

MDLinx reports "two thirds of the silicone hydrogel (SiHy) wearers did not comply with the manufacturers' recommended RF (MRRF) and 2–week replacement (2WR) wearers stretched the replacement interval of their lenses to a greater degree than 1–month replacement (1MR) wearers. Failing to replace lenses when recommended and failing to rub and rinse lenses were associated with a higher rate of patient–reported contact lens (CL) problems." You can read the entire published study in Contact Lens and Anterior Eye.

Did Copper Vision Violate Copyright? Rembrandt Claims So

"Rembrandt Vision Technologies Inc. accused CooperVision Inc. in Texas federal court Thursday of infringing a patent that covers soft contact lens technology. Bala Cynwyd, Pa.-based Rembrandt claims CooperVision infringed the patent by making and selling silicone hydrogel contact lenses, which allow more oxygen to pass through the lenses for better eye health, without a license." For more on the story, to to Law360.

Study Proves OK Fixes Myopia

"They are worn only at night and removed in the morning, enabling normal vision by day without the need for spectacles or other contact lenses. Myopia or shortsightedness in children can be slowed or even halted by wearing these special contact lenses," goes the SiFyNews post. "The finding suggests that orthokeratology (OK) lenses may help to reduce the growing incidence and severity of myopia throughout the world and especially in Asia.'Our research has demonstrated conclusively that OK is effective, at least in the short term, in stopping the eye growth that causes myopia progression,' said Helen Swarbrick, who heads the University of New South Wales Research in Orthokeratology (ROK) Group."

LA Dodger Gibbons Finally Gets the Right CLs

The LATimes reports that "Jay Gibbons was beginning to wonder whether his eyes would ever allow him to play in the major leagues again. 'It definitely crept through my mind more than once that this was not going to get better,' Gibbons said Tuesday after being reinstated with the Dodgers. He replaced Marcus Thames, who was put on the 15-day disabled list because of a right quadriceps strain.

Starting in spring training, Gibbons struggled to find the correct contact lenses, especially in his right eye, leaving him unable to handle big league pitching and to break camp with the Dodgers. 'About five days ago, we tried yet another pair, and finally the last doctor I went to made the diagnosis that I was nearsighted and not farsighted [in the right eye], and I was being treated for farsightedness,' Gibbons said."

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

"Luddites Rejoice" about New Eyewear

That's was a recent headline on a Discover blog: "Eyestrain. Headaches. Nausea. For some people, this is all part of the 3D movie experience. And until now, your choice was to either suffer through 3D; find a cheaper, low-tech theater; or else forgo some new films altogether. But that was before one guy invented 2D Glasses, a pair of specs that converts projected 3D images into 2D (yup, you read that right). It’s touted as a way of preventing eye strain while still enjoying a flick with your 3D-loving friends."

GetLenses Giving Away Free CLs

Follow @getlenses on Twitter and you’ll see each weekly competition is posted every Thursday, with the lucky winner announced on Friday. All you have to do to be in with a chance of winning is re-tweet the message they post. It's a British outfit. Our thought: Will Americans attempt to cash in?

Gene Found for ACG

MedicalNewsToday reports "Jackson Laboratory researchers and their collaborators have reported their discovery of a gene implicated in an acute and severe form of glaucoma known as angle-closure glaucoma (ACG). The gene's activity points to previously unsuspected mechanisms involved in both ACG and infant eye development."

The Bessy Bus Gets New Sponsor--Citgo

How do you promote vision care? Ask an individual to read. So get behind a literacy program in your area or sponsor Bess.  An oil company did.

CITGO Petroleum Corporation will sponsor the award-winning Bess the Book Bus's "2011 Success in Sight Tour." Bess, a Tampa-based literarcy program, will visit more than 44 states this year, and organizers anticipate they will reach as many as 20,000 families and will donate 100,000 new books to children. Last year it donated 60,000 books to 10,000 families.

"Everyone at CITGO is extremely excited to continue our sponsorship of Bess the Book Bus," said Gustavo Velasquez, vice president of supply and marketing with CITGO. "We saw the great work that Bess did with a year's supply of CITGO fuel in our 2009 Fueling Good campaign," said Gustavo Velasquez, CITGO's vice president of supply and marketing. :We look forward to making a positive impact on nationwide literacy levels."

Bess the Book Bus, founded in 2002 by Jennifer E. Frances to promote literacy and provide children with access to new books, has grown into an innovative, mobile national literacy initiatives. Frances and two volunteers kicked off  a 180-day nationwide tour four days ago. They will travel through 44 states and read to thousands of children, and after each read-aloud, Frances invites  children onto the bus where they can select a new book. Additional support for the tour is being provided by Transitions Optical and VSP Vision Care, Townsend Press, Capstone Publishers, and Candlewick Press. For updates on Bess the Book Bus, visit www.Facebook.com/CITGOFuelingGood or www.Bessthebookbus.org.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

OpticalCEU's Spring Conference Attendance Ties Record

Linda Conlin, founder of OpticalCEUs, discusses embryonic eye development at the Spring 2011 OpticalCEU Continuing Education Conference at the MGM Conference Center at Foxwoods.

Jean Davidson talks about the history of spectacles.
Herb Fletcher of Younger Optics reviews and analyzes the importance of eyewear to the health of patients as well as the economic health of an optical shop's practice.
 Attendance at OpticalCEU's Spring 2011 Continuing Education Conference for eye care professionals tied last year's record. Eye care professionals came from Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and even Wisconsin to earn seven ABO and NCLE continuing education credits. The retreat was held in the conference center of the lavish MGM Hotel and Casino at Foxwoods, located on the reservation of the Mashantucket Pequots, Mashantucket, CT. A few arrived the evening before the conference and made a holiday of the Sunday education retreat. During the conference, the attendees received give-aways from Jean Davidson during her presentation about the history of eyewear and from Herb Fletcher of Younger Optics during his talk about sunwear.

Scoop on #2 Draft Pick Von Miller's Eyeglasses

"Those eyeglasses wore as he was presented Thursday night at Radio City Music Hall as the No. 2 overall draft pick of the Broncos? He got them from Silver Lining Opticians in New York," says the DenverPost. "The optician company is run by Denver native Jordan Silver. You can’t get this info anywhere else."

No Good Deed Goes Unpunished

"The efforts of a relief project that collected thousands of used eyeglasses for Haitians rebuilding after last year's earthquake have been thwarted because the project's neophyte organizers haven't been able to figure out how to get the glasses to the country safely," reports the OttawaCitizen.