3/4/2017 6:01:16 PM |
RAINDROP® NEAR VISION INLAY
Alabama Vision Center in Birmingham, Alabama is proud to offer the Raindrop® near vision inlay to our presbyopia patients.
What is Presbyopia?
Presbyopia or loss of reading vision inevitably occurs with aging as the lens loses its mobility. As we age, near activities such as sewing, reading, or looking at a mobile device often become more difficult without the use of reading glasses. Many people find themselves holding objects at arms length to see clearly or constantly putting glasses on for near tasks and then removing them to see at a distance. If you are tired of searching for your reading glasses or bothered by putting them on and taking them off throughout the day, this may be the procedure you have been waiting for.
What is the Raindrop® near vision inlay?
The Raindrop® near vision inlay is a transparent, biocompatible, hydrogel made of 80% water, which is smaller than the head of a pin needle. It is designed to be implanted permanently into the cornea in the non-dominant or reading eye. The Raindrop® reshapes the central region of the cornea to provide a zone of increased power for focusing on near objects, resulting in improvement in near vision.
Am I a Candidate for Raindrop®?
Ideal candidates for Raindrop® are as follows:
• Age 40 to 65
• Good distance vision without glasses
• No history of prior LASIK
• Need for reading glasses with at least a +1.50 add for near tasks
• No severe dry eyes, corneal, or ocular disease
What does the procedure consist of?
The Raindrop® procedure is performed in the office and takes approximately 15 minutes. A partial thickness corneal flap is created, similar to LASIK surgery and the Raindrop® is placed in your non-dominant eye. Only one eye is treated, no corneal tissue is removed, and the implant can be safely removed if you are unsatisfied with the results. The Raindrop® is not the same as monovision (one eye sees distance and the other sees near), both eyes will continue to see well at distance but your non-dominant eye will be used for intermediate and near tasks with the goal of drastically reducing or even eliminating your need for reading glasses.
How effective is the Raindrop® near vision inlay?
• FDA clinical trials showed 2 years after implantation, 92% of patients were able to see 20/40 vision or better at near distances with the inlay-implanted eye.
• The average improvement in near vision was 5 lines from baseline near vision prior to surgery.
• 97.6% of patients gained 2 or more lines of near vision without reading glasses in the inlay eye.
Alabama Vision Center is a leading provider of vision correction surgery in Birmingham, Alabama. Drs. Price Kloess, Andrew Velazquez and Andrew Bartlett are all Fellowship-trained Cornea Specialists experienced in procedures of all types to reduce the need for glasses and contacts. To schedule your free consultation, call any of our three conveniently located offices: Mountain Brook at 3928 Montclair Road, suite 100, Birmingham, Alabama (phone 205-592-3911), the St. Vincent’s Health & Wellness Center at 119 (phone 205-991-2021, and 613 1st Street North, Alabaster, Alabama (across from Shelby Baptist Hospital) at 205-620-2292.
2/21/2017 4:05:40 PM |
Taking A Clear Look at Prescription Sunglasses
Written by: Price Kloess, M.D.
Spring & summer are looming which means we will soon resume our favorite outdoor activities we have been looking forward to for the past three months. Losing those magnetic or clip-on sun shields for your prescription eyeglasses can be frustrating and expensive. Maybe you don’t wear sunglasses at all. However, the sun can be harmful to your eyes, and skipping protection for them altogether can be dangerous. Maybe it’s time to invest in prescription sunglasses.
Sunglasses can be made with nearly any lens prescription. Perhaps you’re yearning to drive off into the sunset, seeing clearly in the distance without squinting. Or maybe you would like to be able to read a book at the beach with bifocals. Sunglasses can be made to meet your vision needs while protecting your eyes from harmful and annoying sun rays.
Your lens choices
The most important part of any pair of sunglasses—prescription or not—is the UV-blocking lens. The sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays contribute to a number of eye problems, including cataracts, cancer, and growths on the eye. Sunglasses should provide 100 percent UV protection. Keep in mind: it doesn’t matter what color or how dark the tint is in your sunglass lenses (tint has nothing to do with UV protection), as long as they provide close to 100 percent UV protection.
If you spend a lot of time near water, sand, snow or other areas where light is highly reflected off surfaces, you should consider polarized prescription sunglasses. Polarized lenses filter reflected light to reduce glare.
You should be aware, though, that there are certain drawbacks to polarized lenses. For instance, you won’t be able to see the screens of cell phones, dashboard instruments and other devices that have LED (light-emitting diode) or LCD (liquid crystal diode) screens or displays.
Looking at lens materials
Prescription sunglass lenses can be made from a variety of different materials to suit your needs.
Many people want sunglass lenses that resist shattering. Polycarbonate lenses are made of strong, impact-resistant plastic. Another type of plastic, called Trivex, began as a military-developed material for shatterproof helicopter windshields and fighter jet canopies. Now sunglass lenses can be crafted to a prescription with this lightweight, tough material.
Sunglass lenses made of glass can be made to meet extremely precise prescription specifications, and provide excellent correction for refractive errors. However, glass lenses are heavy compared to today’s lightweight materials, and they can crack and shatter easily. If you feel that having the precise optical quality of glass lenses is best for your sun protection needs, you can still request them. We can certainly discuss this option with you.
Many people who have strong eyeglass prescriptions require thicker lenses to see well. They may want to consider high-index prescription sunglasses. High-index lenses bend light more efficiently, requiring less material than traditional lenses. That makes them thinner, lighter—and, some would argue, more attractive—than traditional lenses.
Are prescription sunglasses worth the cost?
Here are four things to consider when weighing the value and cost of prescription sunglasses:
- Tally how much you spend annually to replace the clip-on or magnetic sunshields for your prescription glasses. If you are constantly replacing them, that cost may come close to the cost of new prescription sunglasses.
- Assess whether or not your lifestyle has you spending much of your time outdoors or driving during the day. The convenience of prescription sunglasses may justify the added cost.
- Check to see if your optical shop offers a discount when purchasing prescription sunglasses at the same time as your regular eyeglasses.
- Talk with your eye care provider about how prescription sunglasses fit in with your vision needs and lifestyle. They can help you ask the right questions and determine if prescription sunglasses are a good option for you.
We wish you all a fantastic spring. If you or someone you know would like to schedule an eye exam for new sunglasses, call Alabama Vision Center in Birmingham at 205-592-3911, visit alabamavisioncenter.com or http://www.facebook.com/alabamavisioncenter.
Alabama Vision Center is a leading eye care center in Birmingham located in Mountain Brook at 3928 Montclair Road, suite 100, Birmingham, Alabama (phone 205-592-3911) and the St. Vincent’s Health & Wellness Center at 119 (phone 205-991-2021).
2/17/2017 3:23:41 PM |
A survey of patients with glaucoma showed that the perception of the legality and acceptability of marijuana use was significantly associated with intentions to use marijuana for the treatment of glaucoma, even though research has indicated it is of limited benefit, according to a study published by JAMA Ophthalmology. It is estimated that 2.2 million adults in the United States are affected by glaucoma. Many alternative therapies including acupuncture and marijuana are being explored but have not shown promise. Research has shown several limitations associated with the use of marijuana as a treatment for glaucoma. Driven mainly by public support, 21 states and the District of Columbia have legalized the medical use of marijuana, citing mainly the 1999 Institute of Medicine report that found possible therapeutic benefits for the use of marijuana in various debilitating medical conditions, including glaucoma. Given these legal changes, not infrequently, ophthalmologists are approached with patient inquiries about treatment of their glaucoma with marijuana. Researchers at the George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences, evaluated factors associated with intentions by patients to use marijuana as a treatment for glaucoma. The study included a survey of patients with glaucoma or suspected to have glaucoma. The survey looked at demographics, perceived severity of glaucoma, prior knowledge about marijuana use in glaucoma, past marijuana use, perceptions toward marijuana use including legality, systemic adverse effects, safety and effectiveness, and false beliefs, as well as satisfaction with current glaucoma management and treatment costs. The data and results that the intent to use marijuana for glaucoma treatment was driven by perceptions of legality of marijuana use, false beliefs regarding marijuana, satisfaction with current glaucoma care, and relevance of marijuana and glaucoma treatment costs.
Clearly there is need for greater information and education based on the false perceptions of marijuana as having significant therapeutic value in glaucoma therapy.
If you or someone you know would like to schedule and eye exam and glaucoma testing, please call Alabama Vision Center in Birmingham at 205-592-3911, visit alabamavisioncenter.com or http://www.facebook.com/alabamavisioncenter.
Alabama Vision Center is a leading eye care center in Birmingham located in Mountain Brook at 3928 Montclair Road, suite 100, Birmingham, Alabama (phone 205-592-3911) and the St. Vincent’s Health & Wellness Center at 119 (phone 205-991-2021).
6/11/2016 11:28:51 PM |
Three Things Patients Should Know About Cataracts
Cataract awareness…hmmm…what does that mean exactly…wouldn’t someone know if they have cataracts or not?
I get asked that question all the time and more times than not, the answer is “no”.
Take Billy for instance, one of my golfing buddies and close friends. While he didn’t mention any vision problems, once I saw him in the office and told him he had cataracts, he was almost relieved that there was a reason for not being able to see his golf ball as well as in the past.
So this blog is for all my friends and family and patients who are over 50. Don’t take your precious eyesight for granted. The cataract process starts in all of us by age 50 and there are a few facts we should know about cataracts:
- Age isn’t the only risk factor for cataracts. Though most everyone will develop cataracts with age, recent studies show that lifestyle and behavior can influence when and how severely you develop cataracts. Diabetes, extensive exposure to sunlight, smoking, obesity, high blood pressure and certain ethnicities have all been linked to increased risk of cataracts. Eye injuries, prior eye surgery and long-term use of steroid medication can also result in cataracts. If you have any of these or other risk factors, come see us.
- Cataracts cannot be prevented, but you can lower your risk. Wearing UV-blocking sunglasses and brimmed hats when outside can help. Several studies suggest that eating more vitamin C-rich foods may delay how fast cataracts form. Also, avoid smoking cigarettes, which have been shown to increase the risk of cataract development.
- Surgery may help improve more than just your vision. During the procedure, the natural clouded lens is replaced with an artificial lens called an intraocular lens, which should improve your vision significantly. Patients have a variety of lenses to choose from, each with different benefits. Cataract surgery is outpatient, painless, and highly successful with minimal recovery time. Studies have shown that cataract surgery can improve quality of life in all areas.
A life-changing surgery
For Billy, life now is so much better. “I see perfectly! In fact, I cannot remember seeing this well. I no longer need glasses except to read. As a medical doctor, being able to operate without the need for glasses has been amazing. And my golf game…well let’s just say its a work in progress!”
How about you…overdue? Like many conditions, cataracts can gradually worsen vision and the changes over time can be subtle. All it takes is a brief eye examination to determine if you have anything to worry about.
Life is short. Let us help you to see your best.
From our family to yours…happy summer!
4/25/2016 4:11:31 PM |
Cataracts are a leading cause or poor vision worldwide. The U.S., in this case, is no exception.
When we think of the impact that cataracts have on people, the decline in vision is typically gradual and is commonly first noticed with night vision problems from the glare and halos associated with oncoming headlights. What is much more important than the vision loss itself is the negative impact on patient’s quality of life. Recent research describes the effect on patient quality of life before and after having cataract surgery. The researchers compared patients with no known cataracts of the same age, health and lifestyle to those who had cataracts before and after cataract surgery. When compared with the general population, cataract patients had much lower health-related quality of life than those without cataracts in five areas: seeing, moving, hearing, and performing their usual activities as well as general discomfort and symptoms. Then at 12 months after cataract surgery there was significant improvement in the quality of life index. While this seems obvious, it is a reminder that cataracts and vision loss affect more than just vision. There is no reason to avoid suffering if you feel that your vision might be impacting your quality of life.
A recent practicing OB/GYN physician describes his life before and after cataract surgery with Dr. Kloess:
“I knew I was not seeing well. It kinda crept up on me and I ignored it for several months. My initial response after seeing how poor my vision really was and being told it was due to cataracts was a mixture of relief and disbelief (“I’m too old to have cataracts, right?”). Dr. Kloess made the surgery remarkably easy and I am amazed to have my sight restored to crystal clear, normal vision again. My wife even said I seem happier and she was not afraid to let me drive at night anymore. I guess cataracts really did effect more than just my vision.”
If you or someone you know suspects or has been told they have cataracts and would like to learn more about cataract surgery and lens implants, please call Alabama Vision Center in Birmingham at 205-592-3911, visit http://www.alabamavisioncenter.com or our facebook page.
Alabama Vision Center is the leading provider of cataract and LASIK surgery in Birmingham. We have locations in Mountain Brook, Greystone/Liberty Park and Alabaster.
3/21/2016 8:25:41 PM |
Eye Injuries at Work
The personal and economic toll of eye injuries at work is alarming. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, more than 20,000 workplace eye injuries happen each year. Injuries on the job often require one or more missed work days for recovery. In fact, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) reports that workplace eye injuries cost an estimated $300 million a year in lost productivity, medical treatment and worker compensation.
These injuries range from simple eye strain to severe trauma that can cause permanent damage, vision loss and blindness.
The most important thing you can do to protect your vision at work is to always wear appropriate protective eyewear, which can prevent more than 90 percent of serious eye injuries.
“As Ben Franklin once said, ‘an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure,'” said ophthalmologist Price Kloess, MD, clinical spokesperson for the American Academy of Ophthalmology. “It takes very little effort to protect yourself from on-the-job hazards that can cause blinding eye injuries. We strongly advise workers and their employers not to let their guard down when it comes to eye protection.”
Watch Out for Eye Dangers
Common causes for eye injuries are:
- Flying objects (bits of metal, glass)
- Any combination of these or other hazards.
Protecting Your Eyes
There are three things you can do to help prevent an eye injury:
- Know the eye safety dangers at work.
- Eliminate hazards before starting work. Use machine guarding, work screens or other engineering controls.
- Use proper eye protection.
Wear protective eyewear whenever there is a chance of eye injury. Anyone working in or passing through areas that pose eye hazards should wear protective eyewear. This is particularly true of workers involved in welding, which poses a high risk of on-the-job eye injury.
The type of safety eye protection needed depends on the hazards in your workplace and should be compliant with OSHA regulations for eye and face protection. OSHA also provides information about the types of filter lenses required for specific welding and cutting activities (PDF 181 KB), and cautions about the danger of eye irritation from welding fumes (PDF 405 KB) as well. If you are working in an area that has particles, flying objects or dust, you must at least wear safety glasses with side protection (side shields). If you are working with chemicals, you should wear goggles. If you are working near hazardous radiation (welding, lasers or fiber optics) you must use special-purpose safety glasses, goggles, face shields or helmets designed for that task.
Always be sure your eye safety wear is OSHA-compliant and has been approved by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) to meet their eye protection standards.
If an eye injury occurs, see an ophthalmologist or go to the emergency room immediately, even if the eye injury appears minor. Delaying medical attention can result in permanent vision loss or blindness.
Learn How to Recognize an Eye Injury
Because eye injuries can cause serious vision loss, it’s important to be able to recognize an injury and appropriately respond to it. DO NOT attempt to treat a serious eye injury yourself.
If you notice any of these signs in yourself or someone else, get medical help right away.
- The person has obvious pain or trouble seeing.
- The person has a cut or torn eyelid.
- One eye does not move as well as the other.
- One eye sticks out compared to the other.
- The eye has an unusual pupil size or shape.
- There is blood in the clear part of the eye.
- The person has something in the eye or under the eyelid that can’t be easily removed.
2/2/2016 1:30:45 PM |
Many of us have older family members who “went blind’ later in life. Oftentimes these stories were legendary and spoken about in whispers as aging family members who were not accustomed to or able to go to the doctor didn’t…so exactly why they lost sight remained a mystery. The burden on family and society was palpable with so much care needed for those who could no longer see to care for themselves.
Today with incredible advances in diagnostic and therapeutic capabilities in eye care, we now know that this mysterious disease that afflicted so many of our older relatives and friends was Age-related Macular Degeneration or AMD. AMD is the leading cause of blindness in Americans over 65 years of age. It comes in two forms, dry and wet. Dry AMD is a generally slowly progressive condition of the specialized part of the retina called the macula, where central reading vision decreases. People with dry AMD may develop the Wet form and suddenly lose central vision when a hemorrhage occurs. The financial impact of vision loss from AMD nationally is estimated to be $40 billion.
Thankfully now there are some excellent treatments for AMD that can maintain vision for doing activities we all take for granted such as driving and reading. Oral supplements containing lutein and zinc are recommended as well (see Macularhealth.com).
February is National AMD Awareness Month. Maybe for this Valentine’s Day (after the chocolates & flowers of course), make “low vision” a thing of the past by making an eye appointment for your loved one.
Dr. Holly Young
1/25/2016 7:31:21 PM |
Many of us have mixed emotions about “Januaries”…both excitement and apprehension about a new year; and, those new year’s resolutions that, if we are honest, we should rename new “month” because that’s about as long as they ever last.
We hope 2016 is a great year for everyone…& we have one resolution we encourage you to make…& keep…but more about that in a minute.
Ever lose anything of great importance? Remember how you could not rest until you found it?
Imagine losing your eyesight? Well that happens to thousands of Americans ever year from a very common disease called Glaucoma. Glaucoma is a painless, easily detectable, non-symptomatic condition where the pressure in the eye is elevated and sight is gradually and irreversibly lost. Did you catch the “easily detectable”, “non-symptomatic” and “irreversible” part of this? This condition is easy to diagnose and treat through having a routine eye examination. Am I saying thousands of people every year lose the most precious of the five senses by putting off their annual eye examination? The answer is yes!
January, among other things, is National Glaucoma Awareness Month. We encourage you to make this your personal lifelong resolution to make an appointment for an eye examination & do this annually. Problems will come and go but this is one you can take control of…and avoid.
We look forward to seeing you & keeping you seeing in 2016!
5/12/2014 8:23:51 PM |
Ahh…reading glasses…just the thought of them makes us feel older,
like we are falling apart in our mid-forties. Much of my time is spent seeing
patients who can no longer naturally see up close to answer the cell phone,
apply make-up, or read; and, with beach trips looming, being able to read
naturally while soaking up those rays is a must!
We all have or will experience the inability to read in our 40’s requiring the
need for reading glasses or, for those already wearing glasses, bifocals.
This condition is called Presbyopia.
The good news is, for those who prefer not to wear bifocals or
reading glasses, there are ways to restore our natural reading vision!
What is Presbyopia?
Within the eye, there is a flexible lens that allows us to “auto focus” on objects
at different distances. This lens is attached to thousands of tiny rope-like
strands called “zonules.” Small muscles pull on the zonules to change the shape
of the lens. These muscles fail as we age causing Presbyopia, or the inability to
naturally see at near.
There are excellent surgical options for treating Presbyopia. The two
most popular are Bifocal Implants (Refractive Lens Exchange with a multifocal
intraocular lens like ReSTOR) or monovision LASIK laser vision correction (one
eye corrected for reading and the other for distance). To learn more about
alternatives to reading glasses, make an appointment to see Drs. Kloess or
Velazquez by calling 205-991-2021 or visit us at
4/30/2014 7:41:38 PM |
Most Americans Unaware that Common Drugs, Light-Colored Eyes Can Increase Vulnerability to UV-Related Eye Disease
Results of American Academy of Ophthalmology’s Harris Poll show need for greater awareness of factors that increase sun sensitivity
SAN FRANCISCO – April 30, 2014 – The American Academy of Ophthalmology today released results of a Harris Poll that shows that a majority of Americans are unaware that taking common drugs and having light-colored eyes can make people more vulnerable to UV exposure, a contributing factor to certain eye diseases and conditions.
Studies have shown that, in addition to skin cancers, accumulated ultraviolet exposure from the sun can heighten the risk of eye diseases such eye cancer and cataracts, a leading cause of blindness worldwide. Intense UV exposure can also cause temporary blindness known as photokeratitis, while extended sun exposure is linked to growths such as pterygium, or surfer’s eye.
To assess how much Americans know about eye health risks posed by UV rays and what people do to protect themselves, the American Academy of Ophthalmology – the world’s largest association of eye physicians and surgeons – commissioned a national Harris Poll of more than 2,000 adults. The results revealed two major gaps in UV safety knowledge:
- One-third of adults use medications that may increase photosensitivity, or increased susceptibility to damage from UV rays. However, 49 percent are unaware or do not believe those medications can cause photosensitivity. These photosensitizing drugs include antibiotics containing tetracycline or floroquinolones (like Cipro), some birth control and estrogen pills and certain anti-inflammatory pain relievers, such as ibuprofen (Advil) and naproxen sodium (Aleve).
- More than half (54 percent) of Americans have light-colored eyes (blue, green or hazel). Yet, only 1 in 3 (32 percent) of those with light eyes and 29 percent of all polled know light eyes are more susceptible to UV damage. While people with eyes of any color can develop UV-related eye diseases, light eyes and sun exposure are associated with an increased risk of rare eye cancers, such as iris and uveal melanomas.
Ophthalmologists recommend that all individuals – especially those with increased photosensitivity – wear 100 percent UV-safe sunglasses. While the survey found that 83 percent of Americans wear sunglasses, only half (47 percent) said they check for a UV protection label before buying them. Also, less than a third (32 percent) make their kids wear UV-blocking sunglasses.
“Wearing 100 percent UV-protective sunglasses is one of the easiest and the most important things children and adults can do to protect their eye health,” said ophthalmologist Anne Sumers, M.D., clinical spokesperson for the American Academy of Ophthalmology. “It isn’t just about fashion or comfort – it’s about preserving your sight! So make wearing sunglasses a priority, especially if you have light eyes, work outdoors or take certain medications.”
Tips to Protect Your Eyes
The American Academy of Ophthalmology recommends the following tips to protect the eyes from the sun’s harmful ultraviolet radiation:
- Choose glasses that block 100 percent of UV rays. Use only glasses that block both UV-A and UV-B rays and that are labeled either “UV400” or “100% UV protection.” Don’t go by darkness of the lenses, which doesn’t indicate strength of UV protection. Close-fitting wraparound styles offer the best coverage.
- Wear sunglasses even if it’s cloudy. Damaging UV rays go through clouds and can burn skin and eyes even when the sky is overcast.
- Put a lid on it. Wear a hat with a wide brim as well as sunglasses and sunscreen. Studies have shown hats decrease the risk of eye disease related to extended UV exposure.
- Pills and rays don’t always mix. Certain medications may cause increased sensitivity to sunlight, so take extra precautions if using those treatments.
- Watch out for sun, sand and water. When at the beach or in the pool, remember that rays reflected off sand, water or pavement can burn your eyes.
- Don’t rely on contact lenses. Contact lenses may have UV protection but cannot protect the entire eye area from burning rays that can increase risk of disease and blindness. Remember your sunglasses, which provide more coverage.
About the American Academy of Ophthalmology
The American Academy of Ophthalmology, headquartered in San Francisco, is the world’s largest association of eye physicians and surgeons — Eye M.D.s — with more than 32,000 members worldwide. Eye health care is provided by the three “O’s” – ophthalmologists, optometrists, and opticians. It is the ophthalmologist, or Eye M.D., who has the education and training to treat it all: eye diseases, infections and injuries, and perform eye surgery. For more information, visit www.aao.org. The Academy’s EyeSmart® program educates the public about the importance of eye health and empowers them to preserve healthy vision. EyeSmart provides the most trusted and medically accurate information about eye diseases, conditions and injuries. OjosSanos is the Spanish-language version of the program. Visit www.geteyesmart.org or www.ojossanos.org to learn more.
About the Survey
Harris Poll conducted the survey online within the United States on behalf of the American Academy of Ophthalmology between March 31 and April 2, 2014, among 2,027 adults ages 18 and over who reside in the U.S. This online survey is not based on a probability sample and therefore no estimate of theoretical sampling error can be calculated. For complete survey methodology, including weighting variables and complete definition of direct selling, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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- 86 percent did not know some birth control and estrogen pills could increase vulnerability to the sun’s rays
- 83 percent polled did not know some anti-inflammatory pain relievers such as ibuprofen (Advil) and naproxen sodium (Aleve) have also been associated with photosensitivity, though the reaction is rare
- 72 percent did not believe antibiotics containing tetracycline or floroquinolones (like Cipro) can make individuals photosensitive
Sandra, C. et al. Arch Ophthalmol.