Sunday, July 31, 2011

America's Best Teams Up with Discovery Comm

LA Link's Kat Von D
America's Best Contacts & Eyeglasses reportedly will partner with Discovery Communications, parent company of the popular TV network TLC, to become the exclusive nationwide retailer for a line of frames inspired by LA Ink star, Kat Von D, according to its press release. Bold yet feminine, the designs are featured on 12 styles of women's frames. Detailed tattoo motifs decorate the sides of each frame. Read more.

R A E N Promoting New Website and Eyewear Line

Encinitas, CA-based boutique eyewear brand, R A E N optics has the 2011 season in full focus with today's launch of their new website. A fresh look with optimized user capability, R A E N invites the World Wide Web to explore art, culture, fashion, and one stellar lineup of hand-crafted optics, reports the company's press release. Viewers can easily dig in to the newest collections with enlarged hero, front and side views, meet the R A E N community, get inspiration from daily blog posts and see their favorite frames featured hot off the press. Read more.

A Conversation with Designer Frédéric Beausoleil

"For an eyewear designer known especially for his showstopping sunglasses, Frédéric Beausoleil has an improbably perfect surname.: That's the start of an interview the NationalPost conducted with Beausoleil, whose last name "means, literally, lovely sunshine. In addition to his own brand, priced $340-$550, he has consulted for Cartier and Louis Vuitton and also made many of Ray Charles’ later sunglass frames. Beausoleil made his first visit to Canada last month and during his personal appearance at Josephson’s Opticians in Toronto, the designer, 50, sat down with Nathalie Atkinson to talk about the great divide between designer and artisan eyewear." Read more.

Feds Fine Another Cosmetic CL Retailer

"A Bay State retailer of Halloween costume accessories had a frightening encounter with federal regulators for selling novelty contact lenses that make customers look like vampires from 'Twilight,'" says a post on the BostonHerald. "Scott Smiledge-Ferragamo, the owner of a Gloucester joke shop and the Beverly-based e-commerce site, recently settled a Federal Trade Commission case for $50,000. The agency claimed Smiledge-Ferragamo allegedly sold special-effects lenses without properly obtaining prescriptions from customers." Read more.

What We See Ain't What We Perceive

"A few days before a review of my latest book appeared in these pages, I wrote to my editor, saying I had seen an advance copy and how much I liked the color illustration of the yellow moon. He replied that I must be mistaken, since the Book Review doesn’t use color. The next weekend he wrote to say he couldn’t think what had come over him — he reads the Book Review every week, and had somehow not noticed the color. Odd. And yet these lapses can happen to the best of us. Ask yourself what the Roman number four on the face of the church clock looks like. Most people will answer it looks like IV, but almost certainly the truth is it looks like IIII." That's the start of the New York Times Books review of Eric Schwitzgebel's book Perplexities of Consciousness. Read more.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Downloadable CL Grading Scale Free

ContactLensUpdate has a grading scale for CL wear so proclaims its website: "Visit our resource library to download grading scales describing a range of conditions that may occur during contact lens wear. This invaluable photographic aid for contact lens practitioners and students assists in judging the severity of an eye condition, which is often the first step to the correct treatment. Developed by the Brien Holden Vision]. Click here to download the Grading Scales PDF."

CL Library for Practitioners and Patient Coming Soon

Contact Lens Update reportedly will launch a library for practitioners and patients soon. "Our resource library, coming soon, will include images and instructional videos, grading scales, online calculators and up-to-date reference guides. Keep an eye on our “news” section to hear about new resources as they become available," goes the ContactLensUpdate website.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Harry Potter Performs Magic on British Opticians

"Boots Opticians has seen a jump in children's eye test numbers since the launch of the final Harry Potter film," says an OpticianOnline post. "Gordon Carson, professional services officer at Boots, said: 'We have seen a peak in the last week in the volume of eye tests. We can almost see a weak trend in the association between the release of large children's films and the demand for eye tests.'" Read more.

Optico Wipes Coming to U.S.

Devonshire Industries Ltd. will now offer "its Optico wipes into Japan, Taiwan and the U.S. markets," acccording to Nonwovens. "Optico is a prepackaged wipe used to safely clean and sanitize prescription performance, protective eyewear and other sensitive optical and electronic surfaces. The product's new availability marks a significant milestone for the Canadian-based company as it continues to effectively clean surfaces and eliminate germs without the use of damaging chemicals." Read more.

Sorry for the Screw-Up and Limited Access

Some time during Friday access to became limited. We have no idea as to why the setting for the blog was changed. Obviously it's corrected. We apologize for the inconvenience.

British Optician Called Sex Addict

"Married Alan Hornby, 51, used his company’s credit card to pay for three-times-a-week brothel visits and log on to sex websites," according to a post on Express. "He got away with the deception for five years because he was so trusted by his boss. He was caught only after a colleague went through the accounts while he was on holiday and discovered a 'massive black hole.' The father of one was jailed for 32 months after a court heard he used the bank account of the opticians where he was the boss’s right-hand man effectively 'as his own.'" Read more.

Cooper Vision Offers CL Rebates

CooperVision has "new rebates that can save consumers significant cash on their CooperVision contact lens purchases," according to ContactLensHeadlines. "The company, which makes Avaira, Biofinity, Biomedics, Clearsight and Proclear contact lenses, is offering rebates for all of its lens brands, including bifocal contacts and toric contact lenses for astigmatism. Current contact lens wearers can save up to $80, and new wearers can save up to $100." Read more.

B+L's Sweepstakes Ends in September

It's oldest news but ContactLensHeadlines notes that "Bausch + Lomb is holding a sweepstakes called “The Daily Score” to help make daily disposable contact lenses more accessible to kids across the United States in time for the start of the new school year. The sweepstakes giveaway includes more than 100 sport tote bag daily prizes per week and a $5,000 scholarship grand prize. The promotion began June 1 and will continue until September 30." Read more.

Carrera Kids Offers New Line for Back-to-School

MidwestLens reports that "Carrera Kids is offering several new metal frames (CA7562, CA7563, CA7564, CA7565 and CA7566) for boys. All styles have stainless steel fronts combined with flex hinges and adjustable nose pads providing superior comfort and durability. Color choices are brown, gunmetal and black. All styles feature single bridges." Read more.

Vision-Ease Releases New LifeRx FSV Lenses

"Vision-Ease Lens announced the availability of their new LifeRx FSV lenses," according to MidwestLens. "Available in gray the new LifeRx FSV lenses and their SFSV counterparts are 100% interchangeable thanks to matching front curves on both lines. LifeRx lenses are available in a power range of +2.00 to -6.00 out to a -2.00 cylinder." Read more.

Understanding Embryonic Development of the Cornea

"You may fit contact lenses for infants and very young children. Do you know how the eye and the cornea, in particular, develop?" That's how Linda Conlin, founder of the continuing education seminars from OpticalCEUs starts her most recent column in Eyewitness. You can read more on page 12.

New CL Website Offers 'Nuggets of Current Research'

There's a new website information about contact It's a collaborative project with input from the Centre for Contact Lens Research and the Brien Holden Vision Institute. The site reportedly will bring unbiased nuggets of current research as well as practical implications for the practice – within the broader landscape of contact lenses. The site is supported by an educational grant funded by CIBA Vision and Alcon.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Webb Telescope Helping with Eye Health

NASA's James Webb telescope
Even while construction of the James Webb Space Telescope is underway on the most advanced infrared vision of any space observatory, its technologies are already proving useful to human eye health here on Earth, according to the NASA press release. "The Webb telescope program has enabled a number of improvements in measurement technology for astronomy, mirror fabrication, and measurement of human eyes, diagnosis of ocular diseases and potentially improved surgery," said Dr. Dan Neal, Research Fellow at Abbott Medical Optics Inc. in Albuquerque, N.M. Read more.

Ex-GIs May Finally Bring Service Dogs on VA Property

"The House is moving forward on a bill that would require the Veterans Affairs Department to allow service dogs on all VA properties," according to the ArmyTimes. "The House Veterans’ Affairs Committee’s health panel on Thursday approved HR 1154, the Veterans Equal Treatment for Service Dogs Act. The bill has many wickets to pass through before it becomes law, but sponsor Rep. John Carter, R-Texas, said Monday that the legislation is needed to 'close the gap in access that exists.'" Read more.

Diabetes & Depression Lead to Retinopathy

"Patients with diabetes who also suffer from depression are more likely to develop a serious complication known as diabetic retinopathy, a disease that damages the eye’s retina, a five-year study finds," says a post on Newwise. Read more.

New "Vitamin" Reportedly Helps with CVS

EyeScience reportedly has developed an "eye vitamin"  that will help prevent and alleviate vision problems associated with Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS). This announcement comes after years of extensive research and clinical studies, which found the ingredients in Computer Eye Strain Formula™ help reduce eye strain and eye fatigue. Read more.  

SEE Intl Helping to Prevent Blindness

"In a press conference earlier today, Surgical Eye Expeditions (SEE) International announced the launch of an innovative health program through a public/private partnership with the Santa Barbara County Public Health Department and a collaboration with Santa Barbara Neighborhood Clinics," reports the Independent. "The SEE International Santa Barbara Vision Care Program Diabetes Examination Program will provide free examinations to patients in Santa Barbara County for the purpose of early intervention and prevention of blindness due to diabetes." Read more.

Relief Riders Ride Again--in India

Relief Riders International (RRI), the award-winning humanitarian travel company, is re-launching its innovative Give the Gift of Sight eye-surgery program after the partial lifting of a ban on mobile cataract surgery camps in rural India, according to a press release. Close to 24% of the world’s blind population is said to live in India. The World Health Organization estimates that cataracts account for over half of all avoidable blindness in Africa and Asia. RRI says every year in India, 3.5 million people become blind due to cataracts. There are more than 30,000 blind people in Rajasthan. These people tend to be elderly, and quickly become a burden to their families as they are unable to work and are at high risk for accidents.Read more.

Kaiser Office Gives Away Eye Care

"'I am so grateful to Kaiser for doing this,' said Armida, one of the 120 people who received free eye exams, glasses and further care referrals on July 23 at the Kaiser Permanente Medical Offices in Martinez. 'My eyes are not so good, and I cannot afford to fix them.'" That's the start of a post on MartinezPatch. Read more.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Steroids Could Cause Vision Trouble

"Steroid drugs such as prednisone taken by 25.5 million Americans for arthritis, cancer, transplants and other conditions need stronger consumer warnings about a rare but possibly irreversible vision impairment, a University of Michigan eye doctor and the consumer Public Citizen organization said Tuesday in a federal petition for stronger warning labels on the drugs," says USAToday. Read more.

Practice Creates Webinar for Patients

"A new episode of VSP Vision Care’s EyeFiles Webisode series highlights ways to protect children from computer vision syndrome (CVS) and offers tips on how to combat digital eyestrain," reports ModernMedicine. "The new Webisode can be viewed on the EyeFiles tab on the VSP Facebook page at" Read more.

TV Reporteor Uncovers Illegal Sale of Decorative CLs

"It's a rainbow of color contacts just pick your favorite and for $15 they're yours. Armed with a hidden camera our Contact 13 producers went out to see how easy it is to buy cosmetic contacts without a prescription. "Some people, they buy five different colors" says the Booth Operator." Read what the undercover reporter from KTNV discovered.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

OD May Have Violated MN Law

"A St. Paul man is upset because his optometrist refused to approve a recent request for contact lenses. The doctor’s excuse: The patient hadn’t been examined in 18 months, and his prescription was good for only one year." That's the start  of a post in the Star-Tribune. "Under state law, any contact lens prescriptions 'must expire two years after it is written, unless a different expiration date is warranted by the patient’s ocular health.' Under the law, doctors must provide reasons for providing anything less than a two-year prescription during the exam. Our reader said his doctor failed to explain the one-year prescription. Have you received a contact lens prescription good for less than two years?" Read more.

Cyclists Don't Wear Sunglasses

"It appears a major facet of the stereotypical biker image has taken another hit with a recent survey finding that most motorcyclists don’t wear shades while riding," according to ClutchandChrome. "Coming back with a number that at first appears very low, in a national study of American adults conducted by N3L Optics only 15% said of motorcyclists said they wear sunglasses while riding. But bikers shouldn't feel too bad, the rates aren’t much better for other popular outdoor activities such as cycling (28%), running (28%) and golf (19%); however, walkers (72%) have the best rate of protecting their eyes when outdoors." Read more.

Degenerative Eye Disease: There's an App for That

"An ophthalmologist at UT Southwestern Medical Center has helped create a convenient device that lets patients who have a degenerative eye disease better track vision changes," according to UT Southwestern press release. "With the hand-held digital device, called myVisionTrack, patients can now perform an accurate self-test in less than 90 seconds, said Dr. Yu-Guang He, associate professor of ophthalmology at UT Southwestern.

"Supplied as an app on an iPhone or iPod touch, the prototype device displays three circles on a screen, one of which is markedly different from the others. Patients cover one eye, then touch what they perceive to be the odd-shaped circle on the screen. With each click, the differentiation becomes more subtle. The test is then repeated with the other eye. Results are stored in the device so patients do not have to memorize scores. If a significant vision change is detected, patients are instructed to see their doctor." Read more.

Abbott Research Shows Lutein in Infant Brains

Lutein molecule
"Preliminary new research demonstrates for the first time that lutein, an important phytonutrient (plant-based nutrient) that supports eye health, is the predominant carotenoid present in key areas of the infant brain, including areas that regulate overall brain function, cognition, vision, hearing and speech," says a report on News-Medical-Net. "This new research, supported by Abbott, was presented by Elizabeth Johnson, PhD, a scientist in the Carotenoids and Health Laboratory at Tufts University, at the 16th International Symposium on Carotenoids, in Krakow, Poland." Read more.

Action Sports Launches Eyewear Website

"Today marks the official launch of the new specialty eyewear e-tailer,," according to TransworldBusiness. "Headquartered in Northern Vermont, Action Sport Optics was founded by snow sports industry veteran, Dan Stanilonis, to fill a void in the current e-commerce landscape.  It has the unique distinction of being one of the only websites that specializes in exclusively carrying sunglasses and goggles specifically geared toward the action sports and active lifestyle communities." Read more.

TV Star Won't Miss His CLs

"Robert Pattinson, star of hit film and book series Twilight, has revealed that he will not miss the contract lenses used on set the most," according to a post. "He explained that while he experienced mixed feelings about the saga coming to an end, the unusual contact lenses he needed to wear in order to appear to have a vampire's gaze are something he will not miss. During filming, he was required to wear both golden contact lenses and, when his vampire character is hungry, black ones." Read more.

Luxottica's Star Continues to Shine

"Luxottica Group SpA, the luxury eyewear company, posted record second-quarter results Monday with net profit up 8% despite a sharp fall in the U.S. dollar against the euro," reports the Wall Street Journal. "Luxottica said net profit rose to €162 million from €150 million a year earlier, while earnings before interest and taxes rose 7.2% to €277 million." Read more if you subscribe to the WSJ.

Eye Health Calculator, Infant Eye Care Program, and EyeCare America's Cataract Programs

"The Healthy Sight Calculator [sponsored by Transitions] allows users to calculate their risk for eye-related diseases and vision problems, and how much they could save - in time, money and sight - with the right vision care and vision wear through their vision benefit," says LehighAcresCitiizen. "Results vary based on the user's age, gender and ethnicity, all of which impact risk for vision problems and health issues that can affect the eyes. The new tool can be used by employers to educate their workforce, or accessed directly by consumers at" Read more. You might want to refer your patients to the site.

You might also want to remind parents of infants about the InfantSEE program, run by the AOA and sponsored by Johnson & Johnson's Vision Care Institute.  Its website states the program "is designed to ensure that eye and vision care becomes an integral part of infant wellness care to improve a child's quality of life. Under this program, AOA optometrists provide a comprehensive eye and vision assessments for infants within the first year of life regardless of a family's income or access to insurance coverage.

Finally "though cataracts are the leading cause of vision loss worldwide, myths persist about their cause and treatment. More than 20 million people in the US older than 40 have cataracts, and more than half of them will develop cataracts by age 80, according to the National Eye Institute," goes the press release from Eyecare America. "In honor of Cataract Awareness Month, EyeCare America, a public service program of the Foundation of the American Academy of Ophthalmology, provides eye exams at no out-of-pocket cost to people age 65 and older [The medication assistance isn't relevant to cataracts]. The eye exams are provided by a corps of nearly 7,000 volunteer ophthalmologists across the U.S. and Puerto Rico. Those interested in the program can visit to see if they are eligible. The organization's online referral center also enables friends and family members to find out instantly if their loved ones are eligible to be matched with an EyeCare America volunteer ophthalmologist." Read more.

Cut into This Eye Why Don't You?

Camper holds human eye
"The donated eye is tougher than you'd think. It takes a few slices with a sharp scalpel to pierce the white part — the sclera, she learns — and eventually remove the cornea in front," starts the YahooNews post from AP. "Dissecting a human eye isn't the normal fare of summer camp. It's part of an unusual program at a small northern Virginia hospital that aims to hook kids as early as middle school on the possibilities of a medical career." Read more.

The Older We Get, the "Slower" We See

Gestalt image
"When looking at a picture of many trees, young people will tend to say: "This is a forest". However, the older we get, the more likely we are to notice a single tree before seeing the forest," so goes the post on MedicalNewsToday . "This suggests that the speed at which the brain processes the bigger picture is slower in older people. In a new study published in the July-August issue of Elsevier´s Cortex, researchers have found that these age-related changes are correlated with a specific aspect of visual perception, known as Gestalt perception." Read more.

Drug Helps Patients with Hereditary Blindness

MedicalNewsToday reports "a clinical trial led by Newcastle University shows that the drug, idebenone (Catena), improved the vision and perception of colour in patients with Leber's Hereditary Optic Neuropathy (LHON). The inherited condition means patients, who can see normally, lose the sight in one eye then within 3 to 6 months lose the sight in their other eye." Read more.

Monday, July 25, 2011

MDs Say Kentucky Law Puts Patients at Risk

According to a press release from the Kentucky Academy of Eye Physicians and Surgeons, the proposed regulations for a new state law which allows optometrists to perform a broad range of surgical procedures on the eye, fail to properly define the education, training and oversight necessary for this new scope of work that is typically performed by medical board-certified physicians. These supposed failures put Kentucky patients at risk. The Kentucky Board of Optometric Examiners held a public hearing to receive comments on the new regulations a few days ago. "On nearly every level, these regulations fail to ensure that Kentuckians will receive the highest standard of eye care," said Woody Van Meter, president, Kentucky Academy of Eye Physicians and Surgeons.Read more.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

OpticalCEUs Coming to Foxwoods Oct. 16 Offering 7 ABO/NCLE Credits

MGM Grand at Foxwoods
OpticalCEUs will conduct its fall continuing education seminar at the MGM Grand, Foxwoods on Sunday, October 16.  New this year:  Deborah Kotob of Vision-Ease will join speakers Linda Conlin and Jean Davidson in presenting 7 ABO/NCLE approved courses.  Join us for a great learning experience, complimentary lunch and some fun. 

Linda Conlin speaking at OpticalCEU's Fall Conference
OpticalCEUs has run these educational education conference semi-annually since it was founded by Linda Conlin in 1999.
Details and registration information will be available by mail, email and on the website next month.  In the mean time, visit our website at and check out the OpticalCEUs News Blog,, for the latest optical news from around the world.

Fact Hunger Uses Rodic to Shoot Eyewear

"Yvan Rodic, the street style photographer behind the Face Hunter, has released a new video as part of the brand's 'real people' campaign," according to the Independent. "For the debut of its new Heritage Frames glasses last month, Armani previously enlisted some of Rodic's colleagues including Tommy Ton who shot print ads for the Frames of your Life project, designed to showcase the collection on people on the street, not professional models." Read more.

Looking at Smart Phones for Long Periods Not a Bright Idea

Hard as it is for some of us to believe, we needed a study to prove that staring at a smart phone is stupid. "Several reports indicate that prolonged viewing of mobile devices and other stereo 3D devices leads to visual discomfort, fatigueheadaches. According to a new Journal of Vision study, the root cause may be the demand on our eyes to focus on the screen and simultaneously adjust to the distance of the content," according to MedicalNewsToday. Read more.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

How Much Training Do ODs Need to Do What MDs Do?

"Doctors on Thursday debated the amount of training needed for optometrists to perform some minor eye surgeries allowed under legislation approved in February by the Kentucky General Assembly," according to a post on NKY.Cincinnati. "Senate Bill 110 raised eyebrows for the short time it took both chambers to pass the bill - 10 days - and the Kentucky Optometric Association's political action committee giving more than $400,000 in campaign contributions to lawmakers and the gubernatorial campaigns of Gov. Steve Beshear and Senate President David Williams in the past two years. The bill will allow optometrists to do some procedures previously reserved only for ophthalmologists. Kentucky becomes the second state to allow optometrists to perform these types of surgeries, behind Oklahoma." Read more.

16K Patients Using ClearKone

The hybrid contact lens supplier SynergEyes, Inc., says that its second generation hybrid contact lens for irregular corneas, called ClearKone, has been prescribed to more than 16,000 patients in 32 countries since the lens became available in late 2009. Read more.

Pearl Vision Founder Passes Away

The FinancialPost reports "Dr. Stanley Pearle, 92, founder of Pearle Vision, died peacefully at home on Thursday, July 21, 2011 in Dallas, TX surrounded by family and friends. Perhaps best remembered by the iconic jingle, “Nobody cares for eyes more than Pearle,” Dr. Stanley Pearle built the foundation of his business around what he called a “culture of friendly service.” By combining quality eye care, friendly service and savvy marketing strategy, Pearle became a nationally recognized brand name and the first optical retailer in America to sell eyewear coast-to-coast." Read more.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Sweat on Cornea Might Be Hamilton's Problem

The Josh Hamilton of the Rangers has a new explanation for his troubles at the plate. Here's the report from BusinessInsider. "Here’s how he explained it to

'I've got a good explanation for it. This is as clear as I can make it,' Hamilton said. 'We play at nighttime, sweat — blue eyes, obviously, are harder anyway — but playing at nighttime, you sweat a lot, you wipe your eyes, sweat gets on your cornea and dries overnight. Then, you come out midday the next day and instead of the light going straight through your cornea, it hits the dry sweat and disperses and makes everything brighter.'
To combat the lingering corneal sweat, Hamilton has begun using eyedrops and eyelid scrubs on the night before day games." Read more.

You can also read a more complete story posted on SportingNews.

New Face for Versace Eyewear

For what it's worth, Victoria Secret Angel Candice Swanepoel is "the face of Tom Ford and, more recently, Versace Eyewear." says a post on StyleCaster. "Prior to Fall 2011, she'd posed for campaigns for the likes of Diesel, Guess?, Topshop and True Religion – all great, and I'm sure lucrative, but hardly high fashion." Read more.

Lara Bingle Hooks Up with Roc

"Lara Bingle has just announced a collaboration with Roc Eyewear," according to a post on TheVine. "She'll be designing a range for the brand this summer, and has already selected an edit of her favourite styles, which she wore in the brand's latest campaign, shot by Pierre Toussaint, which launched last week." Read more.

Eyewear Retailing Looks Good

According to a press release, despite growing competition and a more frugal consumer base, eyewear retailers can look forward to five more years of growth. The aging US population will continue to drive demand for prescription eyewear, especially as consumers remain in the workforce longer. Another benefit to eyewear retailers will be the healthcare reform bill, which will give more people access to vision care, boosting demand. To ward off competition from online and discount retailers, operators will increasingly offer eye exams given by in-house optometrists. Read more.

Natural Vision Correction--It's Back!

A press release promoting a new book states that according to Kristy White, author of the book "Improve Your Vision Naturally", "Companies and health care providers cash in on people's unawareness by preaching that vision disorders can only be managed with expensive and risky eye surgeries. It is far more convenient to declare natural vision correction as ineffective rather than agree that such methods have merit in preserving, protecting and even enhancing one's eyesight." The released added that her new book is based on her professional involvement in eye care and many years of experience. It debunks numerous myths about vision, the most common causes of vision disorders and conventional treatments and reveals simple yet effective ways to gain better vision without glasses through a healthier diet and lifestyle.

The printed word can be powerful, and there's a distrust of the medical field in general. You might want to take a gander at the remainder of the release or the book to understand what some customers/patients are thinking.Read more.