Saturday, April 11, 2009

AOA at the Illinois College of Optometry

Dr. Mitch Munson, AOA Trustee, enjoyed visiting with students and optometrists at the Illinois College of Optometry Practice Opportunities Symposium March 28, 2009.

AOA thanks the students, faculty and staff at ICO, particularly Tracy Faulkner, Dr. Goodfellow and Dr. Colip, for their assistance!

Comments: The Illinois College of Optometry has a magnificent program that reviews all forms of optometric practice. The AOA was kind enough to be an active participant in the program. We really appreciate this outstanding support by the American Optometric Association and AO Trustee Dr. Mitch Munson. DM

Thursday, April 9, 2009

FDA Panel Splits on New Uses for Atypical Antipsychotic

...An FDA advisory committee today was reluctant to recommend approval of more indications for the antipsychotic drug quetiapine (Seroquel), with studies showing substantial metabolic and cardiovascular risks.
Consequently, the Psychopharmacologic Drugs Advisory Committee voted down a request to market the drug for generalized anxiety disorder. ...

Comments: Many of my DD/MI patients are on this can have oculovisual side effects as well. Look for a paper by Donati and Maino on the polypharmacy of folks with DD and MI in the May issue of the AOA journal, Optometry. DM

Relationship between oculomotor scanning determined by the DEM test and a contextual reading test in schoolchildren with reading difficulties

...Poor readers showed poor horizontal scanning as assessed by the DEM test that was related to a slow reading speed. This test should be used by optometric clinicians as a screening tool to help identify poor reading skills in school children at an early stage...

Factors Affecting Development of Motor Skills in Extremely Low Birth Weight Children

...Conclusion: In this ELBW cohort VA and ophthalmic factors were the only factors associated with scores of development, particularly fine motor development...

Comments: Oh my goodness! You mean those guys involved in COVD and OEP might have been right! That development is dependent upon the visual system? (This was said with tongue firmly placed within cheek and dripping with the very best sarcasm that is typically hard to convey in an electronic written medium). Yes, vision is one of the most important senses involved in overall development. The developmental/functional/behavioral/ pediatric optometrist should be deeply involved with the care of any child at risk. DM

When Should Kids Learn to Read, Write, and Do Math?

...If your child is having trouble reading by the end of first grade, begin by talking with her teacher to find ways to resolve the problem.

Ages 4-5: learning pre-reading skills

Kids learn to:
substitute words in rhyming patterns
write some letters
pronounce simple words
develop vocabulary

Ages 6-10: learning to read

Kids learn to:
read simple books by mid-first grade and know about 100 common words
understand that letters represent sounds, which form words, by mid-first grade enjoy a variety of types of stories and talk about characters, settings and events remember the names and sounds of all letters and recognize upper- and lowercase by second grade read independently and fluently by third grade sound out unfamiliar words when reading

Ages 11-13: "reading to learn"

Kids learn to:
read to learn about their hobbies and other interests and to study for school comprehend more fully what they've read read fiction, including chapter books, and nonfiction, including magazines and newspapers ...

Comments: I always told my patients and their families pretty much what was stated above....I now have confirmation of what I've been telling folks from an independent source. All stages of learning how to read are important. Bring your child to your pediatric eye/vision care specialist today for a comprehensive examination... To find an appropriate eye doc go to . These are docs who know which are the best tests to do to determine if reading problems are related to how the eyes work! DM

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

The Role of the Visual Cycle in Inherited Diseases of the Retina

The Department of Ophthalmology & Visual Sciences at the University of Illinois at Chicago invites you to a special lecture by

Dean Bok, PhD

Jules Stein Eye Institute

University of California, Los Angeles

The Role of the Visual Cycle in Inherited Diseases of the Retina

Friday, April 17, 3:30-4:30 PM

Conference Room, Lions of Illinois Eye Research Institute
1905 W. Taylor Street, Room L146
Chicago, IL

This Gerald A. Fishman, MD Lecture in Vision Science is supported
by an educational grant from Allergan, Inc.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Some Alternative Therapies Can Be Safe, Effective For Children

...Today, more children than ever are being treated with complementary and alternative therapies. Recent studies indicate that about 30 percent of healthy children and up to 50 percent of children with chronic disease are using some kind of alternative therapy....

Some types of therapies that may be beneficial for children:

  • Yoga. Experts suggest that pediatric patients participate in yoga as a form of therapy. Yoga, when combined with medicines prescribed by a physician, can be used to help asthmatic patients learn to practice and use deep breathing and remain calm when faced with shortness of breath. Yoga also helps reduce stress in teens and adolescents.
  • Tai chi. Research shows teenagers encounter a lot of stress, which puts them at risk for depression. Mind and body therapies, such as tai chi, help reduce the risk of depression and anxiety. Tai chi and yoga help to decrease blood pressure and sympathetic activity in children. This allows for a sense of relaxation and calmness.
  • Probiotics. These live bacteria, similar to those found in the human stomach, can be found in dietary supplements or in food, such as yogurt. Used to treat antibiotic-associated diarrhea, controlled studies have shown probiotics are safe for children. Using probiotics can reduce diarrhea by one to two days, allowing children to go back to school or day care sooner. Probiotics are not recommended for children on any immunosuppressive drugs or those who are immuno-compromised. Always consult a doctor first....

Treatment of Convergence Insufficiency in Childhood: A Current Perspective.

...Recent clinical trials showed that office-based vision therapy was successful in about 75% of patients (resulting in normal or significantly improved symptoms and signs) and was the only treatment studied which was more effective than placebo treatments for children with symptomatic CI. Eye care providers who do not currently offer this treatment may consider referring these patients to a doctor who provides this treatment or consider expanding the treatment options available within their practice to manage this condition.