Saturday, January 16, 2010

Your baby's developing eyes

... * Use a nightlight in your baby’s room.
* Change the crib’s position frequently and your child’s position in it.
* Keep reach-and-touch toys within your baby’s focus, about eight to twelve inches.
* Talk to your baby as you walk around the room.
* Alternate right and left sides with each feeding.
* Hang a mobile above and outside the crib....

The Airlines Manual Of Practice Management For Optometry

American Optometric Association

* AOA Home Page
* AOA News
* AOA on Facebook
* Board certification home page
* Maino's Memos
* Optometry's Meeting
* Optometry: Journal of the AOA
* AOANews on Twitter

InfantSee Video

Comments: The American Optometric Association's InfantSee program is saving the vision of thousands of little ones each year. Won't you have your child evaluated so that he or she can avoid a lifetime of eye problems? Do it now. Go to for more info. DM

Treatment for Stereo Blindness

Treatment for Stereo Blindness

...Patients with stereo blindness require optometric vision therapy, including the use of prisms and 3D glasses. Treatment duration will depend upon the particular patient's condition and associated factors.....

Comments: Want to see Avatar in 3D? You may need optometric vision therapy to fix your binocular vision problem .... and lack of 3D vision. DM

Improving Stereo Vision

...Why weren't my eyes working well? Why couldn't I see the baseball or hit it well? Until I started Vision Therapy I did not know the answer. This is the story of my eyes and how they got better. Before I went to Vision Therapy, reading and seeing smaller things were difficult for me. I was ashamed that at 10 years old I could not read a book a friend of mine had read at 8 years old. At a friend's house I tried not to do anything that I might have to read. It was awful....

Comments: Read all about Eli and the problems...and solutions to his vision problems. Seeing the latest 3D movies like Avatar would be very difficult for him.... Click on the title above for more information. DM

Learning To See In Stereo

...National Public Radio's Joe Palca ... was born with a crossed eye. So as not to be confused by two different images, his young brain learned to suppress the input from his right eye, leaving Joe with no stereo vision....

Comments: Click the title above to listen to Joe's story. you will need very good 3D vision to see the latest movies like Avatar! DM

Friday, January 15, 2010

Eye test may detect Alzheimer's years before symptoms develop.

From AOA First Look:

BBC News (1/15) reports that, according to a study published in the journal Cell Death and Disease, "a simple eye test might be able to detect Alzheimer's and other diseases, before symptoms develop." Working with mice, researchers from University College London used "fluorescent markers which attach to dying the retina" to "give an early indication of brain cell death."

The "chemical marker" could "either be administered as an injection in the arm or eye-drops," the UK's Daily Telegraph (1/14, Alleyne) reported. Once the "substance is in the body," clinicians then "use an infrared camera to take a picture of the eye and count how many dots appear in the photo." The investigators "have calculated that anything more than 20 could indicate the early onset of Alzheimer's."

The UK's Daily Mail (1/15, Macrae) reports, "With research showing that cells start to die ten to 20 years before the symptoms of Alzheimer's become evident, it could allow people to be screened in middle age for signs of the disease." Still, "some may not want to know their fate so far in advance," possibly for "fear that insurance companies could increase premiums for those who test positive while still young."

According to the UK's Press Association (1/14), "Alzheimer's is known to affect eyesight, and 60% of sufferers have impaired vision." This latest study "builds on the discovery that neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's, result in the death of retinal cells." Notably, "a similar process can detect and assess the blinding disease glaucoma, which also leads to the death of retinal cells."

The optic nerve head assessed with HRT in 5–16-year-old normal children: normal values, repeatability and interocular difference

...We conclude that HRT can be used in children between 5 and 16 years of age, and normal values presented in the study can be used for comparison of children with optic nerve diseases. Because the assessment of rim area varied the least, it may be the parameter to use for follow-up. The normal large interocular difference should be taken into account when comparing eyes in the individual child....

Comments: Click on title to get pdf. Also check out Pang Y, Trachimowicz R, Castells D, Goodfellow GW, Maino DM. Optic Nerve Heads in Pediatric African Americans Using Retina Tomography. Optom Vis Sci 2009;86(12): published online ahead of print edition 11/09. DM

Clinical electrophysiology and visual outcome in optic nerve hypoplasia (ONH)

...Optic disk diameter, observation of disk pallor, VEP and PERG testing in infancy are useful for establishing the visual prognosis at five years of age in children with ONH. This is consistent with the notion that these parameters are related to the anatomic and functional preservation of retinal ganglion cells....
Comments: Get free pdf by clicking on title. DM

An Audit of the Outcome of Amblyopia Treatment: A retrospective analysis of 322 children.

...Although mean duration of treatment was long involving many hospital visits the visual outcome was variable, unsatisfactory (<6/9) and more expensive than necessary. Since compliance has been identified as major problem methods to improve amblyopia treatment are needed, possibly by using educational/motivational intervention....

Comments: Maybe it is time to do more than just patch. amblyopia is a two-eyed (binocular) problem. Perhaps some binocular vision therapy is what is needed? Get free PDF by clicking title. DM

Earlier Diagnosis for Autistic Children?

...Researchers at The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia found that children with autism spectrum disorders process sound and language a fraction of a second slower than children without autism. Calculating this delay may help in detecting the disorder...


Ever notice how people texting at night have that eerie blue glow?

Or wake up ready to write down the Next Great Idea, and get blinded by your computer screen?

During the day, computer screens look good—they're designed to look like the sun. But, at 9PM, 10PM, or 3AM, you probably shouldn't be looking at the sun.

F.lux fixes this: it makes the color of your computer's display adapt to the time of day, warm at night and like sunlight during the day.

It's even possible that you're staying up too late because of your computer. You could use f.lux because it makes you sleep better, or you could just use it just because it makes your computer look better.

Or try the Linux version: XFlux for Linux (glibc6)

f.lux makes your computer screen look like the room you're in, all the time. When the sun sets, it makes your computer look like your indoor lights. In the morning, it makes things look like sunlight again....

Comments: If you try this out let me know! DM

Avatar 3-D Images Help to Identify Vision Problems

The College of Optometrists in Vision Development offers advice for those having trouble with seeing in 3-D

AURORA, Ohio, Jan. 15 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- With Avatar now heading into its fifth week as a box office hit, many people are headed to movie theaters to see what the excitement over 3-D is all about. Unfortunately, many of them may be disappointed because they didn't know they can't see 3-D.

While the concept of being "3-D ready" means that the new 3-D TVs, showcased at the Consumer Electronics Show last week, will be able to provide 3-D viewing, the College of Optometrists in Vision Development state that our eyes need to be "3-D ready" to be able to fully enjoy Avatar. In other words, you need to be able to see 3-D for the entire 2 hours and 40 minutes of riveting 3-D action.

The 3-D version of Avatar has two images projected on the screen, each image seen by one eye. The images are then merged into one by your brain. If the images aren't perceived correctly, it will be very difficult to merge or fuse the images into 3-D. The technology behind the Avatar 3-D effects is based on the premise that the viewer has the ability to see 3-D.

"There are a variety of vision problems which may cause intermittent problems, where you will see 3-D part of the time. This can definitely cause headaches or at the least make viewing very uncomfortable," explained Dr. Bradley Habermehl, President of the College of Optometrists in Vision Development.

Research has shown that up to 56% of those 18 to 38 years of age have one or more problems with binocular vision and therefore could have difficulty seeing 3-D. In addition, about five percent of the population have amblyopia (lazy eye) and/or strabismus (eye turn) which makes 3-D viewing impossible.

But there is hope. Thanks to optometric vision therapy, thousands of people who previously could not see 3-D are enjoying every special effect Avatar has to offer. Dr. Susan R. Barry, professor of neurobiology in the Department of Biological Sciences at Mount Holyoke College, who lived most of her life stereoblind until she went through an optometric vision therapy program at the age of 48, shares, "I am happy to say I am no longer stereoblind. I can enjoy the 3-D effects in Avatar as well or more than anyone else. The scenes of the forest receding way into the distance and the seeds from the Tree of Life floating in front of the screen were fantastic."

In fact, Barry's life changed so dramatically by gaining 3-D vision that she wrote Fixing My Gaze (June, 2009), to share her experience with the world. In an interview published in Scientific American, From 2-D to 3-D Sight: How One Scientist Learned to See, Barry shares, "Seeing in 3-D provides a fundamentally different way of seeing and interpreting the world than seeing with one eye. When I began to see in stereo, it came as an enormous surprise and a great gift."

Some people may have 3-D vision but feel nauseous or dizzy when watching Avatar. This can be caused by something known as visual motion hypersensitivity.

"People who have visual motion hypersensitivity, will find Avatar quite challenging to view," according to Kenneth J. Ciuffreda,O.D., FCOVD-A, Ph.D., a professor at SUNY, State College of Optometry, Department of Vision Sciences in New York City, and leading research expert in binocular vision. Ciuffreda recently co-authored a paper on the topic of visual motion hypersensitivity (VMH) and one of the signs of VMH is feeling dizzy when watching a movie in the movie theater. And, this isn't even a 3-D movie! Adding the third dimension can make viewing stressful for someone with VMH. (The reference for the paper is: Winkler Pa, Ciuffreda KJ. Ocular fixation, vestibular dysfunction, and visual motion hypersensitivity. Optometry 2009;80(9):502-512.)

As technology quickly advances to provide us with 3-D ready TVs so we can watch movies, like Avatar, in the comfort of our own home, there are still millions of people whose eyes are not 3-D ready. "It is our mission to educate the public on the fact that you can become 3-D ready. Optometric vision therapy has helped thousands of people across the world to be able to see 3-D; even those who have had multiple eye surgeries, such as Dr. Barry," Habermehl states.

To find out more about 3-D vision and optometric vision therapy, visit the website for the College of Optometrists in Vision Development,

About COVD and our member doctors

The College of Optometrists in Vision Development (COVD) is an international, non-profit optometric membership organization that provides education, evaluation and board certification programs in functional, behavioral, and developmental vision care, optometric vision therapy and vision rehabilitation. The organization is comprised of doctors of optometry, vision therapists and other vision specialists. For more information on learning-related vision problems, vision therapy, COVD and our open access journal, Optometry & Vision Development, please visit

Developmental optometrists are eye care practitioners who specialize in visual development, the prevention of vision problems, enhancement of visual skills, the rehabilitation of various functional vision problems, and provide optometric vision therapy for children and adults. Optometric vision therapy is a program of prescribed procedures to change and improve visual performance, which in turn helps our eyes and brain work together more effectively for reading and other learning tasks as well as seeing 3-D.

Available Topic Experts include this bloger: Dominick M. Maino, OD, MEd, FAAO, FCOVD-A Email at Northwest Optometric Associates or Illinois Eye Institute

For additional information, please contact:
Ms. Pamela Happ, CAE, Executive Director
College of Optometrists in Vision Development
215 West Garfield Road, Suite 210
Aurora, OH 44202
P 330-995-0718 | 888-268-3770

F 330-995-0719


TV industry turns blind eye to non-3D viewers

From Rath's Radar;

When it comes to 3D television, I don't see it. Literally. The technology that's supposed to convince me that a 3D image exists when I look at a 2D screen doesn't work for me. Nor does it work for a small but significant percentage of the population--4 percent to 10 percent, depending on which expert you ask. Millions of people like me are being left behind by content and hardware companies as they move to 3D....

TV industry turns blind eye to non-3D viewers

From Rath's Radar;

When it comes to 3D television, I don't see it. Literally. The technology that's supposed to convince me that a 3D image exists when I look at a 2D screen doesn't work for me. Nor does it work for a small but significant percentage of the population--4 percent to 10 percent, depending on which expert you ask. Millions of people like me are being left behind by content and hardware companies as they move to 3D....

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Prismatic bifocals may reduce myopia progression in children.

From AOA's FirstLook:

The Los Angeles Times (1/12, Roan) reports that, according to a study published Jan. 12 in the Archives of Ophthalmology, "treating nearsightedness early in its course with bifocal lenses instead of single-vision lenses may reduce the ultimate severity of the condition." In a study of "135 Chinese Canadian children who were diagnosed with progressive myopia," researchers assigned "the wear either single-vision lenses, bifocals, or bifocals with prism, a type of correction that is ground into lenses to help the eyes work together and enhance near vision." Two years later, "the slowest rate of progression was among children who wore prismatic bifocals; a 58% difference in the rate of progression compared to children wearing single-vision lenses."

MedPage Today (1/11, Phend) reported that while "a prescription for regular bifocals reduced progression to -0.96 D, compared with the -1.55 D seen with single-vision glasses over a 24-month period," the prismatic bifocals proved "to be more effective, with a drop of only 0.70 D over the same period." Medscape (1/11, Lowry) also covered the story.

New Journal in PubMed

The following journal has been added to PubMed Central:

Journal of Ocular Biology, Diseases, and Informatics
ISSN: 1936-8437 (print) 1936-8445 (electronic)
URL: Archive: v. 1 (2008) to present. Current content is forthcoming with no
embargo delay.

Pediatric Optometry: Evidence-based Diagnosis and Treatment: Amblyopia, Convergence Insufficiency, and Myopia

Pediatric Optometry: Evidence-based Diagnosis and Treatment: Amblyopia, Convergence Insufficiency, and Myopia

Dr. Mitchell Scheiman will be the Behavioral Optometrist in Residence at the New England College of Optometry next Spring. He will be on campus from March 17 to 21 and will address the students during their regularly scheduled class times on subjects related to behavioral optometry. On Sunday March 21 Dr Scheiman will deliver a three hour COPE approved CE lecture from 9:00 AM to noon titled “Pediatric Optometry: Evidence-based Diagnosis and Treatment: Amblyopia, Convergence Insufficiency, and Myopia”

Dr. Scheiman is the lead author of the article “A randomized clinical trial of Treatments for Convergence Insufficiency in Children” which was published in the Archives of Ophthalmology in 2005. He has a private practice with five office locations in the Philadelphia area specializing in vision therapy. Dr. Sheiman is a professor of optometry at the Pennsylvania College of Optometry at Salus University in Philadelphia.