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Sunday, January 22, 2012

Unmet needs-By Kelly Nichols, O.D.

Unmet Need in Dry Eye

A recent "Industry News" article in the AOA News ( caught my attention and continues to intrigue me. The article reports several very interesting facts indicating unmet dry eye need including: 1) Nearly half of all U.S. adults (48%) experience one or more dry eye symptom(s) regularly; 2) 19% of women age 55 and older have experienced dry eye symptoms for more than 10 years, 3) 69% who experience one or more dry eye symptom(s) have not visited a eye care professional to treat symptoms; and 4) of those who visited an eye care professional to treat their dry eye symptoms, 19% visited more than once before finding relief, and 22% reported that they still have not found relief.

My bottom line summary of this market research indicates that there is more unmet need in dry eye disease than likely any other ocular condition. Potential patients self-treat (with or without clinician), experience significant visual and quality of life issues due to dry eye, and have not found substantial relief from the condition. Therefore, ask about symptoms, examine for dry eye, actively manage dry eye and lid disease, and hopefully make a difference.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Chromagen Eyeglass Lenses

In all my years of being an optometrist I have never given much thought to vision therapy. Many years ago at several meetings I saw a device known as a colorymeter. Kind of a funny looking device it was a plywood box with a light inside and several knobs outside.The premise was that as the patient looked into the box the doctor changed the color of the light shining on the reading material. I could not figure out how I would decide which lens to use. After many years, I once again came across the company. This time the promise was that the doctor would introduce each lens in front of the patient's eye demonstrating two choices and narrowing the possibilities from 16 to 8 to 4 to 2 to one. This lens was placed into a trial frame and the process is repeated in the other eye. Finally with the two lenses in place the patient reads with and without the glasses to see if there is any improvement. I have been amazed! Many individuals increased 50%.
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