Sunday, May 31, 2015

Literacy Linked to Eye Health

"In the month after Alexander Dominguez joined Maygon Thompson's third-grade class at Charles Carroll Barrister Elementary School, he breezed through worksheets and quickly rose to be among the most studious members. So when the third-grader couldn't read a relatively simple sentence on the board, Thompson was puzzled. 'I thought he was kidding,' said Thompson, a special educator at the public school in Southwest Baltimore. 'But he's so serious about his work, it had to be something else,'" according to a report in the Baltimore Sun. A team of researchers at the Wilmer Eye Institute at Johns Hopkins Hospital might have figured out that 'something else.' They're trying to answer a basic but overlooked question: Are students struggling to read because they can't see? For the past six months, Hopkins pediatric ophthalmologist Dr. Megan Collins has been conducting screenings and administering glasses to students in a dozen Baltimore elementary schools to produce a first-of-its-kind study that attempts to link vision deficiencies and literacy in a school-based population. Whether students can't read because they can't see, Collins said, is one of those 'important research questions you think someone else has answered.'" Read more.

Contact Lenses Change the Community of Bacteria on Eyes

"Wearing contact lenses may change the community of bacteria living in your eyes, according to a small new study." That's the word from "In the study, the surface of the eye in the people who wore contact lenses had triple the proportion of certain bacteria species, on average, compared with the people in the study who did not wear the lenses, researchers found. Moreover, the researchers found differences in the composition of the bacterial community on the surface of people’s eyes. In the people who wore contact lenses, this composition more closely resembled the bacteria on the individuals’ eyelids, as compared to the nonwearers. The study included nine people who wore contacts and 11 who did not." Read more.

In a more detailed version of the study, Medical News Today reported: "Presenting their work at the annual meeting of the American Society for Microbiology on May 31st in New Orleans, LA, the NYU Langone researchers report that micro-organisms residing in the eyes of people who wear contact lenses daily more closely resemble micro-organisms residing in eyelid skin than the bacteria usually found in the eyes of people who do not wear contacts. The researchers took hundreds of swabs of different parts of the eye, including the skin directly beneath the eye. Genetic analysis of swabs and used contact lenses allowed the team to identify which bacteria were present. Comparing nine contact lens wearers with 11 non-contacts users, the team found three times the usual proportion of the bacteria Methylobacterium, Lactobacillus, Acinetobacter and Pseudomonas on the eye surfaces (conjunctiva) of contact lens wearers than on the eye surfaces of the control group. Examining the bacterial diversity using a plotted graph, the team observed that the eye microbiome of contact lens wearers is more similar in composition to the microbiome of their skin than the eye microbiome of non-lens wearers." Read more.

Saturday, May 30, 2015

Cataract Explosion on the Horizon, Says Study, as June Declared Cataract Awareness Month

 In just 17 years, the number of American with cataracts will exploded 50 percent to 38.5 million by 2032 and by 78 percent to 45.6 million by the year 2050. That's thte conclusion of Prevent Blindness “Future of Vision: Forecasting the Prevalence and Costs of Vision Problems." Currently 25.7 million Americans older than 40 have cataracts. It also found most current cataract patients are women and that trend will continue. Whites will continue to make up a majority of cataract patients, but this population will level off and slightly decrease by the 2040’s. Hispanics will exhibit the fastest rate of growth in cataract cases.

Prevent Blindness has declared June as Cataract Awareness Month to educate the public on cataract, risk factors, symptoms and treatment options, including surgery. Free information is provided through its dedicated web page at, or via phone at (800) 331-2020.

New Eyewear from A&A Optical

"A&A Optical announces the release of new frames from the XXL eyewear collection," notes Midwest Lens. "Premium quality eyewear engineered for the man with special fit needs and endorsed by ESPN’s Ron 'Jaws' Jaworski. The XXL collection features classic, athletic, and uptown styling. All frames have longer temples to match the ample head space in eye sizes 51 to 63. Available in titanium, beta titanium, acetate, semi-rimless and acetate-metal combinations. Tackle fit challenges with XXL eyewear." Read more.

New Eyewear from Just Cavalli

"The Just Cavalli Spring/Summer 2015 Eyewear collection exudes a spirit of innovation and a real non-conformist attitude, with the style of these new frames representing the perfect incarnation of the brand’s original vibe," according to Midwest Lens. "The new collection has an urban influence running through it, with contemporary, eclectic features in every model. Squared lines alternate with more rounded profiles, with pilot and cat-eye frames featuring heavily, while a variety of materials and engaging color combinations bring home the brand’s unconventional spirit." Read more.

Thursday, May 28, 2015

New Sunglasses from Ksubi Eyewear

"Ksubi Eyewear’s new Spring/Summer 2015 collection embodies the raw underground aesthetic the Australian fashion house is renowned for," reports Midwest Lens. "A cohesive nod to the past, present, and future, the range showcases a diverse fusion of inspiration. Everything from a 50’s inspired cat-eye, to a 70’s squared-off aviator, feels very fresh through metallic finishes, modern detailing and lens treatments. This blend of vintage vibes with minimalist execution brings out a eclectic, yet very wearable assortment of one of a kind sunglasses." Read more.

Colors in Optics Signs License with Perry Ellis

"Perry Ellis International...has entered into a license agreement with Colors In Optics, Ltd. to include sunglasses, ophthalmic eyewear and eyewear accessories such as cases, chains, cloths and cleaners under the Laundry by Shelli Segal brand," goes the press release that appeared on "The roster of licenses for the Laundry brand will now include eyewear in addition to fashion accessories, lingerie, outerwear, home and fragrance. The new collection is expected to launch Spring 2016 in premium department stores, upscale specialty stores, eyewear specialty stores, optical shops, Optician's offices and select ecommerce sites in the U.S. and Canada." Read more.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Oscillating Brain Waves in Visual Cortex Help Sight

"Scientists measuring brain activity have found that in many regions, such as the sensory or motor cortex, activity sometimes oscillates at different frequencies, forming wave-like pattern," according to Medical News Today. "Despite the fact that such oscillations are frequently observed, and present in many brain regions, their functional role remains unclear. Research done by Dr. Christopher Pack, from McGill University, who looked at such waves occurring in a region of the visual cortex of the brain, suggests these oscillations could have a role in resetting the sensitivity of neurons after eye movements. Further results suggest these waves could also have a role in supporting the brain's representation of space. These results were presented at the 9th Annual Canadian Neuroscience Meeting, on May 25th 2015 in Vancouver, British Columbia." Read more.

Blind Use Echolocators and Access the Visual Cortex

"Canadian expert Mel Goodale determines echolocators use echoes to detect multiple properties of objects through areas of the brain associated with vision," writes Medical News Today. "Certain blind individuals have the ability to use echoes from tongue or finger clicks to recognize objects in the distance, and some use echolocation as a replacement for vision. Research done by Dr. Mel Goodale, from the University of Western Ontario, in Canada, and colleagues around the world, is showing that echolocation in blind individuals is a full form of sensory substitution, and that blind echolocation experts recruit regions of the brain normally associated with visual perception when making echo-based assessments of objects. Dr. Goodale's latest results were presented at the 9th Annual Canadian Neuroscience Meeting in Vancouver British Columbia." Read more.

Monday, May 25, 2015

Project Runway's Tim Gunn Teams Up with Transitions

Recently Gunn made a change to his trademark eyewear when he purchased
a pair of Transitions Signature lenses for them.
Through a new marketing partnership, Transitions Optical, Inc., and Project Runway host Tim Gunn hope to inspire people to see life – and fashion – through a new lens. (Transitions' pun, not ours.)

Gunn will provide fashion tips to help people see fashion differently and to help them feel confident with their style. For example, Gunn will advise how to make sure style choices are fashionable and functional. Transitions believes the message will resonate with its users. "He [Gunn] will connect Transitions with countless eyeglass wearers, making them aware of how fashionable and functional Transitions adaptive lenses truly are," said Patience Cook, director, North America Marketing, Transitions Optical.

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Poor Southerners Have the Highest Incident of Poor Eyesights, Says CDC

"Health officials say bad eyesight in the U.S. is most common in the South. A new report found the South was home to three-quarters of the U.S. counties with the highest prevalence of severe vision loss," goes an Associated Press report in the Augusta Chronicle. "The South also has higher rates of poverty, diabetes and chronic disease. Health officials believe those problems are all related to the vision loss. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released the report Thursday. Overall, about 3 percent of people had severe vision loss. The highest rate was from Owsley County, Kentucky, which surpassed 18 percent. The study is the CDC’s first county-level assessment of blindness and severe vision loss. It’s based on millions of U.S. Census Bureau survey responses from 2009 through 2013." Read more.

In the report entitled Geographic Disparity of Severe Vision Loss — United States, 2009–2013, the CDC reports that "vision loss and blindness are among the top 10 disabilities in the United States, causing substantial social, economic, and psychological effects, including increased morbidity, increased mortality, and decreased quality of life. CDC analyzed data from the American Community Survey to estimate county level prevalence of severe vision loss in the United States and to describe its geographic pattern and its association with poverty level." Get a copy of the report at

Friday, May 22, 2015

Campaign for Utah's AG Reportedly Received a Donation from 1-800 Contacts

"Utah Attorney General Sean Reyes accepted a $5,000 campaign donation from a contact lens seller based in the state after his office began defending a new law that critics say was written at the company's behest," according to an Associated Press report on ABC News. "Three of the nation's biggest contact lens makers are suing Utah over the law, which bans price-fixing for lenses and could have wide-ranging implications for the industry. They argue it is unconstitutional and was written to benefit discount retailers like 1-800 Contacts. The companies filed suit April 13. On May 1, Reyes' campaign deposited a $5,000 check from 1-800 Contacts, which by that time had joined the lawsuit in favor of the law." Read more. What is the significance? In this era of multimillion political campaigns, five grand ain't much. Besides it was the legislature that passed the law banning unilateral pricing by contact lens manufacturers.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

New Eyewear from bene

"This Summer 2015, bebe Eyewear releases an optical collection that captures the spirit of adventure with exclusive animal camouflage prints and shimmery iridescent animal acetates," writes Midwest Lens. "Flowing silhouettes, metal logo cuff embellishments and ‘b’ rivet logos satisfy sophisticated tastes. Available in vibrant teal, amethyst and ruby jewel tones as well as earthy topaz and olive, this collection appeals to the many facets of the bebe girl and offers an assortment of feminine, fashionable styles." Read more.

New Eyewear from Modern Optical International

"The stage is set for back-to-school 2015 as value eyewear leader Modern Optical International announces the launch of its newly revamped URock Collection," announced Midwest Lens. "Geared exclusively for the male tween thru college crowd, the seven new URock styles offer minimalist designs that balance cool with edge. A masculine color palette along with subtle patterns and matte finishes invite broad appeal to this elusive, style-conscious demographic. Quality materials such as TR90 memory plastic, handmade zyl, and spring hinges support their active lifestyles. Value pricing plus a two-year warranty will earn parents’ stamp of approval. On-trend designs, teen-centric model names, a URock video and updated collection logo all embody the core of this essential eyewear collection. 'Do What Rocks Your World!'" Read more.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Eye Exams Get Patients to Seek Treatment for Chronic Problems

After comprehensive eye exams, patients seek follow-up treatment for certain chronic conditions from the primary care physicians and specialists, based on the advice of an eye care professionals. That's the finding of Eye Exam Impacts on Re-engagement for Chronic Conditions, a new study by UnitedHealthcare.

It  demonstrates how eye care professionals can play a key role in helping re-engage patients with chronic conditions into care. This may help enable cost savings and prevention of disease progression and complications. Study results showed that 33 percent of previously unengaged patients, defined as lacking medical care for any chronic conditions over the previous 18 months, were re-engaged into care with a primary care physician or specialist within 60 days following an eye exam. Another 24 percent of patients were re-engaged after 60 days following an eye exam.

The study followed more than 2,300 UnitedHealthcare plan participants enrolled in employer-sponsored health plans to determine whether patients lacking care for chronic conditions followed up for treatment with a primary care physician or specialist after an eye exam. The study examined re-engagement rates for people with seven chronic conditions: Crohn’s disease, diabetes, Graves’ disease, high cholesterol, hypertension, multiple sclerosis and rheumatoid arthritis. The results are important considering many people visit their eye care doctor more frequently than their primary care provider. Read more.

Hospital Reports Rise in Acanthamoeba Keratitis

"Specialists at Moorfields Eye hospital have noticed a rise in eye infections among contact-lens wearers and are warning users to take extra care," according to a BBC post. "Last year, doctors at the hospital treated 60 new cases of a particularly nasty infection called acanthamoeba keratitis - around two to three times more cases than in recent years. Bacteria, fungi and micro-organisms can stick to contact lenses and cause pain, irritation and serious harm. One woman whose eye became infected from her contact lens has described being kept awake for a week while doctors tried to treat the problem. Jessica Greaney, 18, a student at Nottingham University, was told the probable cause of the infection was a drop of water which had splashed on to one of her lenses while she was washing them." Read more.

Readers Make People Look Older, Says Study

One in four adults say reading glasses can make someone look ten years older, says a survey conducted by Jacksonville University, FL. The survey evaluates the effect that readers have on perceived age. Worldwide, nearly 1.7 billion people have presbyopia, and the number could jump to 2.1 billion by 2020.The Age Perception Impact Survey, conducted online and with support from Alcon, examined the perceptions and attitudes of aging among the US population between the ages of 38-54, also known as the Generation X population. It surveyed 1,067 adults who live in the continental United States. In addition, there were 50 interviews, which included sharing pictures of individuals with and without readers and asking interviewees to guess their age and personal attributes. Read more.

New Eywear from Ogi Kids

"Ogi Eyewear expands the Ogi Kids line with new styles in the “Mommy & Me, Daddy & I” collection, a high-demand series of coordinating adult and child-sized frames," reports Midwest Lens. "The Ogi Kids Collection by Ogi Eyewear combines form and function to create a unique line of fashionable frames modeled after the best-selling adult styles. This notion is beautifully demonstrated in the new OK316 and OK317. By fusing sophisticated textures with vibrant colors, these two additions help to solidify Ogi Kids as a leader in the children’s eyewear segment." Read more.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Fight against Unilateral Pricing Policies of Contact Lenses Grows

"Costco and online sellers like 1-800 Contacts would love to sell you cheaper contact lenses. But in recent years, the country’s biggest contact manufacturers have instituted minimum prices for their products that make it impossible for retailers to offer them at lower price points," reports Time magazine. "In testimony before Congress last summer, the Consumers Union declared such policies 'uncompetitive' and tantamount to price fixing: 'Consumers are denied more affordable alternatives. They pay more than they need to, and sellers who would like to make those affordable alternatives available are denied the opportunity to do so.'" Read more.

Kendall Jenner Stars in New Lagerfeld Campaign

"The latest act at total domination of the fashion world, Kendall Jenner stars in Karl Lagerfeld’s eyewear campaign. The first sneak peak is here, and it is obviously all kinds of chic. But when Karl and Kendall combine, it’s hard to expect anything less," according to Bustle. "Karl Lagerfeld posted a short video on his Instagram on Monday, giving us a preview of the making of his new eyewear campaign, starring Jenner and French model Baptiste Giabiconi. The full video, which is available on, shows the two posing in oversized sunnies, army green shades, and coquettish reading glasses, while Lagerfeld shoots from behind his camera lens. And Karl also gives us some insight as to why the 19-year-old has experienced such widespread modeling success. He says, '[Kendall is] great and modern, and the girl of the moment.' Well, there’s no arguing that one." Read more.

Sunday, May 17, 2015

ABO/NCLE Changed Certification Process for Next Year (2016)

In a recent email, the ABO-NCLE said that starting January 2016, it is changing certification renewal requirements. It will apply to all three-year certificates (certifications) that expire in 2016. Here are the new renewal requirements, as described by ABO/NCLE:

  • ABO Certification Renewal: $85 renewal fee and completion of 12 ABO and/or NCLE approved CECs [continuing education credits], of which at least 6 hours are ABO approved technical CECs.
  • NCLE Certification Renewal: $85 renewal fee and completion of 18 ABO and/or NCLE approved CECs, of which at least 9 hours are NCLE approved technical CECs.
  • ABO & NCLE (Joint) Certification Renewal: $85 renewal fee for each certification and completion of 21 ABO and/or NCLE approved CECs, of which at least 5 hours of must be ABO approved technical CECs and at least 6 hours must be NCLE approved technical CECs.
"If you are licensed in a state that requires continuing education for license renewal, all you need to do is provide a copy of your current license, with your $85 payment, per certification. In order to maintain your ABO and/or NCLE Advanced & Masters Designation Renewal: $85 renewal fee for each certification and at least one-third of your required credits, as described above, must be Approved Level II or III CECs." Need more information? Contact ABO/NCLE on its certification webpage.

Ex-GOP Presidential Candidate KO's Ex-World Heavyweight Champ--For Vision

"The political world got a rare treat Friday night, courtesy of the last man to accept the GOP presidential nomination. Stepping into the boxing ring against four-time World Heavyweight Champion Evander Holyfield (albeit a Holyfield about ten years past due), former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney traded blows in one of the strangest celebrity boxing matches you’ll ever see," reports Bustle. "And frankly, you have to forgive both men that — Romney vs. Holyfield was awful boxing, but great charity.... Suffice to say, if you watched this fight expecting to be thrilled as a boxing fan, you were probably bitterly disappointed. But everyone else should feel good, because this boxing match was obviously not really about sweat or grind, but about raising money for a good cause — the event was estimated to bring in one million dollars for Charity Vision....As NPR detailed in covering this epic bout, Charity Vision is a non-profit organization, for which Romney’s son Josh serves is a volunteer vice president. Their primary mission is to provide corrective vision care — surgeries included — for people in underprivileged parts of the world." Read more.

Friday, May 15, 2015

More Eye Exams for Children in School

"Last year, I went with a small group of ophthalmologists to a South Bronx middle school to conduct vision exams. One neatly dressed boy had trouble seeing the big E at the top of the chart. He hesitated and made mistakes on the second line, and then put his head down, embarrassed. "I don’t think you can see the chart,' I said. He told me he couldn’t remember ever having an eye exam. I thought he might be an anomaly," says Pamelin F. Gallin, professor of ophthalmology and of pediatrics at NewYork-Presbyterian/Columbia University Medical Center. She argues for more eye exams of school children in the New York Times. "I was wrong. My colleagues and I have conducted 2,400 screenings on students in three New York City middle schools: one in the South Bronx, one in Williamsburg and one in the Washington Heights section of Manhattan. We have prescribed and distributed 450 free pairs of glasses to the nearly one-fifth of the kids who had 20/40 vision (which means street signs and chalkboards are blurry) or worse. Many of the kids knew they couldn’t see the board, but hadn’t thought to ask for a checkup, because their vision had deteriorated gradually." Read more.

Appeals Court Halts Utah's Ban on Unilateral Pricing Policies for Contact Lenses

"A federal appeals court has halted a new Utah law banning price-fixing for contact lenses that could have wide-ranging implications for the industry amid a fight between manufacturers and discount retailers," reports WRAL. "Lens maker Alcon Laboratories cheered the order Thursday. Along with Johnson & Johnson and Bausch & Lomb, the company says the law is an unconstitutional overreach written to benefit Utah-based online discount retailer 1-800 Contacts." Read more.

Explanation for the Mystery Black/Blue or White/Gold Dress

"Black and blue or white and gold? That is the question that took the world by storm back in February after two friends from Scotland posted a picture of a dress online seeking an answer because they disagreed on its color," reminds Medical News Today. "But it seems no one else can agree either; some of us see 'The Dress' as black and blue, while others see it as white and gold. Now, three new studies published in the journal Current Biology attempt to explain why." Read more. For the earlier blog post about this "mysterious" dress, click here.

Luxottica Renews License with Prada

Luxottica Group and Prada s.p.a. renewed their "exclusive license agreement for the design, production and worldwide distribution of prescription frames and sunglasses under the Prada and Miu Miu brands. The 10-year agreement will extend through December 31, 2025," according to the Wall Street Journal Transcript. Read more.

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

New Insights into Low-Light Vision

"Driving down a dimly lit road at midnight can tax even those with 20/20 vision, but according to a recent UC Irvine study, the brain processes the experience no differently than if it were noon. The same study also reveals how quickly the brain adapts to vision loss, contradicting earlier research and opening the door to novel treatments," reports Science Daily. "The findings, which appear in the April 21 edition of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, are significant for those who have suffered retinal damage or disease, said cognitive scientist Alyssa Brewer, the lead author. 'Previous research suggested that the two areas of the brain responsible for color processing received input only from cone photoreceptors -- the parts of the retina used in central, normal daylight vision for things like reading and seeing details and colors in a scene,' she said." Read more.

Utah's Ban on Minimum Priced Contact Lenses Withstands Suit

"A federal judge is refusing to block a Utah law banning minimum prices for contact lens that has drawn the ire of the nation's largest manufacturers," according to an Associated Press story on Fox Business. "In a decision handed down Monday in Salt Lake City, U.S. District Judge Dee Benson said contact-lens makers like Johnson & Johnson and Bausch & Lomb haven't shown that the law is unconstitutional. The manufacturers sued the state last month amid an increasingly bitter fight with discount retailers like 1-800-Contacts. They said the law was written at the behest of the Utah-based discounter and minimum prices help eye doctors make recommendations." Read more.

Interchangeable Children's Eyewear Coming to U.S.

funoogles has launched its interchangeable, customizable prescription eyewear for children line in the United States. The idea came from founder Jessica Darcy's seven-year-old daughter, Ella-Jane. Born with a congenital cataract, Ella-Jane understood that glasses were necessary, but she bored with having to wear the same frames each day. She asked her mom if it would be possible to create glasses made of interchangeable parts, leading to the development of funoogles. "The first time Ella-Jane put on a pair of funoogles, she lit up with excitement," said Darcy. "Eager to show them off, she debuted this initial pair to her friends at school who then became interested in owning a pair of funoogles, too. With that I realized that other children should also have the opportunity to customize their glasses." funoogles glasses are made from TR-90. The "starter pack" includes a clear colored eyewear base known as a core (to keeps the lenses in place), an interchangeable outline clip, full clip, brow clip, and temples. The cost $99.99, which now are sold online, but the company wants to work with retailers. Read more.

Monday, May 11, 2015

Manufacturers of Impact-Resistant Lenses Put on FDA Alert List

The Food & Drug Administration has added two lens exporters to its list of companies failing to comply with FDA regulations: Jiangxi Look Optical Industrial Co., Ltd., and Koadak Optical Ind. Com., Ltd. Here's the FDA's reason: "Eyeglasses and sunglasses imported into the United States are required to comply with 21 CFR 801.410, "Use of impact-resistant lenses in eyeglasses and sunglasses". A certificate to comply with 21 CFR 801.410(g) must accompany each entry of eyeglasses and sunglasses showing the lens manufacturer has conducted tests of the lenses using the impact test described in paragraph (d)(2) of 21 CFR 801.410 or any equal or superior test. It has been reported that certificates from foreign manufacturers may not be valid. Tests by one U.S. distributor revealed 40-70% breakage which differed significantly from the manufacturer's certificate. Due to apparent certificate irregularities SAN-DO collected a sample of children's sunglasses. The manufacturer's certificate indicated that no lenses broke during testing. However, WEAC testing of the sample found that nearly every lens broke completely. More recently, SAN-DO collected a sample of adult prescription lenses. WEAC testing of the sample found that 38% of the lenses broke completely." Read more.

J&J Vision Care Looks at a $300 Million Expansion

Despite the lawsuits about the unilateral pricing policies, things must be going well for the manufacturers of contact lenses, at least for one. "Johnson & Johnson proposes $300 million, 100-job expansion in Jacksonville," reports the Florida Times-Union. "Johnson & Johnson Vision Care is considering a $300 million expansion to its contact lens plant in Jacksonville that would add an additional 100 jobs. It’s also seeking almost $98 million in city and state tax relief. The jobs would pay an average of $60,000 a year plus $30,000 in benefits and would be filled by end of 2017, according to legislation filed Wednesday afternoon with Jacksonville City Council. The company is asking for $7.1 million in property tax relief from the city over seven years and $90.3 million in state tax credit over 20 years." Read more.

Friday, May 8, 2015

Physician Fights Off Ebola Virus in Eye

"When Dr. Ian Crozier was released from Emory University Hospital in October after a long, brutal fight with Ebola that nearly ended his life, his medical team thought he was cured. But less than two months later, he was back at the hospital with fading sight, intense pain and soaring pressure in his left eye," according to the New York Times. "Test results were chilling: The inside of Dr. Crozier’s eye was teeming with Ebola. His doctors were amazed. They had considered the possibility that the virus had invaded his eye, but they had not really expected to find it. Months had passed since Dr. Crozier became ill while working in an Ebola treatment ward in Sierra Leone as a volunteer for the World Health Organization. By the time he left Emory, his blood was Ebola-free. Although the virus may persist in semen for months, other body fluids were thought to be clear of it once a patient recovered. Almost nothing was known about the ability of Ebola to lurk inside the eye." Read more.

Also read the post about changing eye color and about the Crozier case history.

Viral Infections Change Eye Color

"How can a viral infection change the color of a person’s eye?" asks the New York Times. "Months after Dr. Ian Crozier thought he had recovered from Ebola, he was stunned to find himself developing intense eye pain and fading vision. The inside of his left eye was still occupied territory, full of live, replicating virus. And one morning during this siege, he looked in the mirror and saw that his iris had changed from blue to green. Although such color changes are rare, they do occur from time to time during viral infections, eye doctors say. Herpes viruses are the most common cause, but other viruses can do the same thing. The changes in hue are almost always permanent." Read more. See this post as well.

App Overcomes Partial Color Blindness with Chrome Browser App

"The web isn't always a great a place to visit if you're color-blind -- in fact, you may not properly see the Chrome logo above. Thankfully, Google may have a way to fill in some of that missing picture," according to Engadget. "It recently released a Chrome extension, Color Enhancer, that tweaks the browser's colors to help overcome partial color blindness. All you do is walk through a basic calibration process, and the add-on does the rest. This isn't the most complicated addition in the world, but it could make a big difference if it helps you spot web objects that would otherwise go unnoticed." Read more.

Ebola Virus in Aqueous Humor after Being Undectable in Blood

Science Daily reports that "researchers are reporting a case study in which viable Ebola virus was present in the eye’s aqueous humor — the clear fluid in the front of the eye, between the lens and the cornea — 10 weeks after the virus was no longer detectable in the patient’s blood." Read more.

New Eyewear from Kilter

"This spring Kilter releases an optical collection that defies the norm," says Midwest Lens. "Wearable from school to skate, this collection of eight styles for teens features cutting edge shapes, cool camouflage and edgy color contrast. Each Kilter style features a signature “K” Kilter logo on the interior left temple, a defining detail." Read more.

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Conlin at NYS Opticians Gala

Linda Conlin, the founder of OpticalCEUs, lectured at the annual NYS Opticians Gala Professional Development Symposium. The event, sponsored by the New York State Society of Opticians, drew more than 150 opticians to the Turning Stone Casino in Verona, New York. Conlin talked about the use of augmented reality contact lenses as a convenience for patients or as a device that dispenses medicine to the eye. OpticalCEUs, the 16 year old education program for opticians, was name as a sponsor of the event.

Saturday, May 2, 2015

Forget the $1.2 Billion Warby Parker Raised. Look at Its Plans for Smart Phones

There's more to notice than the billions Warby Parker whipped up to fund its 20-store brick-and-mortar expansion. "The company is also building new technology to make shopping for frames in stores and online easier. Gilboa said Warby Parker is investing in technology to let customers conduct eye exams using just their mobile phones," reports the Wall Street Journal's Digits.

In case you have not paid attention, Warby Parker recently raised $1.2 billion. "The capital will help expand Warby Parker’s chain of retail shops, where the company generates a growing portion of sales. The storefronts, started in 2013 as an experiment, now employ about half of the company’s 500 employees and help drive awareness for the Warby Parker brand in each of the 9 U.S. cities where they operate." Read more.

NEI Research Will Noninvasively Image Cells in Greater Detail

Artist's rendering of neural activity in the retina. Light that enters the eye
activates rod and cone photoreceptors, which in turn activate retinal ganglion cells.
Signals travel to the brain via retinal ganglion cell axons.
Photo credit: National Eye Institute.
"Five bold projects will develop new technology to noninvasively image cells of the eye in unprecedented detail," according to NEI. "The National Eye Institute (NEI) announced the awards as part of its Audacious Goals Initiative. NEI has committed $3.8 million to the projects in 2015 and up to $17.9 million over the next five years, pending the availability of funds. NEI is part of the National Institutes of Health. The NEI Audacious Goals Initiative is a coordinated effort to spur new therapies for blinding diseases. The central audacious goal is to restore vision by regenerating neurons and neural connections in the eye and visual system. Special emphasis is devoted to cells of the retina, including the light-sensitive rod and cone photoreceptors, and the retinal ganglion cells, which connect photoreceptors to the brain via the optic nerve." Read more.

Costco Accuses Johnson & Johnson of Forcing Customers to Pay Higher Prices for Contact Lenses

"Costco Wholesale Corp. has accused Johnson & Johnson’s Vision Care Inc. of causing the retailer’s customers to pay higher prices for the eye company’s contact lenses," reports the Wall Street Journal. "Costco in March filed a complaint against Johnson & Johnson, which revealed the suit late Friday in its quarterly report to the Securities and Exchange Commission." Read more.

New Kenzo Eyewear from L'Amy America

"The Kenzo Eyewear line consists of both ophthalmic and sunwear. Kenzo’s trademark is spontaneity and fun," writes Midwest Lens. "Kenzo has a fresh attitude with respect for the heritage of the brand. Kenzo Eyewear is for the woman or man who’s not afraid of color and prints." Read more.