Saturday, September 4, 2010

Beloit College

One of the VERY Best....US News and World Report rated....small liberal arts college in the UNIVERSE (guess where I did my undergrad work?) is Beloit College.

...Beloit College was founded in 1846, when Wisconsin was still a territory. It has a very diverse student body. Its 1250 students are from nearly every state, the District of Columbia, and 40 nations. Twenty-one percent of its students are domestic minorities or students from countries other than the United States. .... 97% of Beloit's 105 full-time faculty members hold a Ph.D. or the highest degree in their field. ...Beloit offers more than fifty majors, more than thirty minors, and a number of dual-degree and preprofessional programs. BC sits on a wooded forty-acre campus includes twenty-eight buildings in a range of architectural styles....The college's academic facilities include the internationally recognized Logan Museum of Anthropology, the Wright Museum of Art, a state of the art performing arts complex and research labs equipped with advanced technology in the new LEED Certified Center for the Sciences. Beloit offers more than thirty international programs, dozens of domestic study programs, and hundreds of internships and field study programs....

If you are looking for a wonderful undergrad program. Check out Beloit College! DM

Changin Brains

....What can you do to help your children develop to their full potential? Did you know that virtually every aspect of of the development of the human brain is shaped by experience?....

Comments: For the past 40 years the Fellows of the College of Optometry in Vision Development knew that the environment can be used to improve function and brain development....we are thrilled that the rest of the world is now catching up! Take a look at these FREE videos! DM

Friday, September 3, 2010

The Portage Chicago

I don't usually put this kind of information here, but THE PORTAGE restaurant and bar
(AKA a Gastropub) at 3938 N. Central Avenue Chicago, IL 60634 is literally within walking distance from my home (773.853.0779 [email protected])

It is a small, intimate place that can rock with conversation and laughter. They have a dinning room with a small bar, a "Library" for more private dining, and a wonderful patio. The Portage serves high quality a reasonable price. The menu is diverse...but not so way out there that you have no idea what the heck they are talking about. The wine list is wonderful with a "Mystery Wine" for $20 a bottle that always delights. (They also have several very nice single malt Scotches to choose from.) The portion size is just that you can have an appetizer, the entree, desert and coffee and not feel stuffed. This evening 4 of us ate for about $200 not including tip...but it did include a very nice white wine, a sippin' single malt Scotch, an appetizer, entree, and desert).

My buddy had the Southern Fried Chicken: Coconut rice, summer vegetables, and a southern style gravy for $14.95, I had the "Hanging Steak" with garlic & Horseradish mashed potatoes with asparagus ($16.95) and the ladies had Scallops. The appetizer was grilled calamari stuffed with Andouille sausage and fried calamari with a horseradish sauce with saffron (yummy). For dessert we had Home Made Apple Pie, topped with a house-made Butternut ice cream…($5.95), Vanilla Bean Crème Brulee, with fresh berries…($6.95), Flourless Chocolate Cake (that literally melted in your mouth), Topped with a Raspberry and Chocolate Ganache, served with a Raspberry compote and whipped cream…($5.95)

Now if this isn't already tempting the door you will be greeted by Mr. Quay Tao. An amazing gentle man....who never seems to forget a face or a name. We were seated near the entrance and it was a pleasure watching this fellow make all who entered and exited feel at home. He knew if you were there before....or if you were new....and handshakes...and hugs were given to all. You felt welcomed. Our waiter (Mark) never rushed us...never. If you want to "get in and out" this is probably not the place to do friends and I arrived at the restaurant about 7:30PM and we finally paid the bill about 10PM or so....I was having so much fun I didn't even realize that a couple of hours had passed... It was my wife's birthday...they brought her dessert with a candle in it and helped us sing "Happy Birthday" (not in that phony "happy, happy" way) to help us celebrate.

The Portage is a place in my neighborhood (Portage Park) that I will go to again and again. By the way....if you go, please tell Quay that Dominick sent ya!

Sissel: Amazing!

...Sissel, the international singing sensation from Norway, is widely regarded as one of the finest and most talented sopranos in the world. Her crystalclear voice has made Sissel a national institution in Norway. Sissel has sung all over the world, selling over six million solo albums. She contributed the haunting vocal tracks for the soundtrack to Titanic. She has been doing great duets with singers like Placido Domingo, Charles Aznavour, Taro Ichihara, Bryn Terfel, Jose Carreras, Russell Watson, Kurt Nilsen, Neil Sedaka and Josh Groban. A very remarkable voice you will only hear once in your lifetime....

Comments: My choir director ... Chuck Irish Norwegian (?) turned me on to Sissel....give a listen...what a voice! DM

Eyes on Advocacy: From Lighthouse International

July 26 marked the 20th Anniversary of the signing of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). In continuing the spirit of the ADA, the House (H.R. 3101)and Senate (S. 3304) recently passed legislation that would greatly expand access to technology for the disabled and visually impaired.

The bill’s major provisions would require accessible technology to be incorporated into devices, such as cable or satellite boxes, and hand-held smart phones. This represents a major victory for people with visual impairment. One such provision would require cable and satellite providers to include voice output for on-screen text menus, which would eliminate the difficulty of inaccessible on-screen menus.

The leaders of the Coalition of Organizations for Accessible Technology (COAT) -- of which Lighthouse International is a member -- negotiated the legislation through Congress. We’d like to thank them, as well as everyone who contacted their elected officials in support of these bills. President Obama is expected to sign the bill later this month.

On another note, September is Children’s Eye Health Month. It’s a good time to contact your U.S. Senators and ask for their support of S. 259, The Vision Care for Kids Act. The bill, which passed the House and is awaiting action by the Senate, would provide grants to states for comprehensive eye examinations for children previously identified as needing services. It would also provide education resources to parents and families of children with a visual impairment.

As children throughout the country head back to school, please take a moment to tell your U.S. Senators’ about the importance of vision services for children.

Comments: Contact your representative. Do it. Do it now. DM

Two medical societies back mandatory flu vaccination for health care workers

...The Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America (SHEA) and the Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA) this week endorsed mandatory vaccination policies for all health care workers to reduce risk of infection among patients and employees. ...

Comments: BTW as health care providers...we should also be vaccinated! DM

Back-to-school office visits should prompt vaccination checks

...Back to school means back to the pediatrician’s office for many children, as more schools now require physicals before participation in sport and athletic clubs. This trip provides the pediatrician a good opportunity to make sure that children are up to date with their vaccines, including their yearly influenza vaccine — a recent addition for 2010. ...

Comments: If you have looked at all the vaccinations our children are supposed to have...and when they need to have them...well, it certainly appears insane. As primary eye care providers, we should urge parents to talk to their doctors about their children's vaccinations. We should encourage them to have their children vaccinated. We should suggest that they talk to their pediatricians about alternative schedules and timetables for vaccinations.... We do not want our children getting sick or making others sick. Vaccinations are a good idea...but parents should know the risks/benefits. DM

Child’s Ordeal Shows Risks of Psychosis Drugs for Young

....At 18 months, Kyle Warren started taking a daily antipsychotic drug on the orders of a pediatrician trying to quell the boy’s severe temper tantrums. ... Thus began a troubled toddler’s journey from one doctor to another, from one diagnosis to another, involving even more drugs.....

Comments: Read this NYT article. DM

More Americans Taking Rx Drugs

...Nearly half of all Americans -- 48% -- took at least one prescription drug in a one-month period in 2007-2008, a four percentage point hike over a decade...

Comments: Remember this includes your pediatric patients too! Ask about those drugs when you are taking your case history. DM

Video Games: Good for You?!?

...Video games are a part of growing up for most kids in the U.S. In a recent survey, 97 percent of children age 12 to 17 said they play video games, whether it's on their computer or on an Xbox, PlayStation or other device. Now, a new study says certain kinds of video games can actually improve the way we see the world around us.....

Comments: We use "video games" to improve visual acuity in amblyopes....and vision information processing as well. Scientists are starting to look at why this works. DM

Escaping a Submarine

...Escaping from a Navy jet is easy -- just pull the eject lever. But when you're in a submarine, more than 800 feet below the ocean's surface in frigid water, it makes escaping a lot more difficult. Now the Navy has a new way to train submariners how to escape, when they have no other way out....

Comments: I know this has little to do with children's vision...but it is most fascinating! Watch the video. DM

Shorter Sleep Durations Linked to Greater Risks of Mental Distress in Young Adults

...Young adults who get fewer than eight hours of sleep per night have greater risks of psychological distress, a combination of high levels of depressive and anxious symptoms,...

Management of Neuropsychiatric Symptoms in People with Dementia

...Neuropsychiatric symptoms are frequent and troublesome in people with dementia and present a major treatment challenge for clinicians. Most ... practice guidelines suggest non-pharmacological treatments as the first-line therapy .... some atypical antipsychotic drugs, specifically risperidone and aripiprazole, confer benefit in the treatment of aggression in people with Alzheimer's disease over a period of up to 12 weeks. .... the limited evidence ...does not indicate ongoing treatment benefits over longer periods of therapy. .... it is important .... to limit the use of antipsychotic medication to short-term treatment .... Non-pharmacological therapies offer a viable and effective alternative....

Comments: I work with many individuals on a wide range of major antipsychotic/neuropsychotropic drugs....perhaps our role as the primary eye care provider is to remind the family and other doctors the patient is working with that these drugs carry significant side effects and should be used appropriately. DM

Join us for Primary Care Grand Rounds

Primary Care Grand Rounds at the Illinois College of Optometry

Primary Care Grand Rounds is an Illinois College of Optometry continuing education program, which features a collaborative effort between fourth year clinicians, residents and their mentoring clinical faculty. The case presentations with a faculty panel are designed to actively engage the audience in a discussion covering a wide array of topics germane to the patients’ eye care and systemic health. Bring your professional expertise and intellectual curiosity and join the collegial exchange!

Fall 2010

Thursday, September 9
Ross Olson (Dr. Stephanie Klemencic), Mary Burgos (Dr. Jordan Keith) and Dr. Jessica Condie will be presenting during the first Primary Care 4th Year Grand Rounds event.

Thursday, September 23
Thursday, October 21

Time: 5:30-7:30 P.M.

Location: ICO Adams Center

Cost: $30 per program

Course includes parking, light refreshments, course materials, and certificate of attendance. Attendees will earn 2 hours of non-tested CE credit for each course attended.

To register, please use the attached registration form, or call 312-949-7426.

Diane D. Gillette
Director of Continuing Education & Faculty Professional Development
Illinois College of Optometry
Phone: 312-949-7429
Fax: 312-949-7729
Email: [email protected]

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Illinois College of Optometry Faculty, Student & Alumni Achievements!

Dr. Caden and ICO student Alicia Nehls won the BSK research support award for 2010. Only four awards were given.

The 2010 Alumni Association Award Recipients included faculty (Drs. Frantz, Lee), alumni and BOT members:
• Kelly A. Frantz, OD, FAAO, FCOVD, Excellence in Education Award - Faculty
• David Lee, OD, PhD, FAAO, Lifetime Service Award
• Susan Cotter, OD '83, MS, FAAO, Alumna of the Year Award
• Robert L. Grazian, OD '82, Alumnus of the Year Award
• Dwight H. Akerman, OD '80, FAAO (Dipl), FIACLE, FBCLA, Distinguished Alumnus Award
• Michael V. Favia, JD, Distinguished Friend Award
• Barry J. Jose, OD '77, Professional Achievement Award
• John F. Amos, OD '65, MS, Excellence in Education Award - Non-Faculty
• Congressman John Boozman, Humanitarian Award
• Donovan L. Crouch, OD '63, FAAO, Lifetime Service Award

ICO Faculty will be giving/presenting 32 posters/papers and 2 Continuing Education courses at the next American Academy of Optometry meeting in SF! Another good reason to go to this meeting.

Dr. Goodfellow is a candidate for President Elect of the IOA. Dr. Allison is a candidate for the Trustee of the IOA.

Dr. M. Chaglasian is quoted in the August 2010 Optometric Management, p. 28-29 discussing the management of glaucoma.

Drs. Lee and Taylor were honored by their colleagues for their achievement of emeritus faculty at the faculty retreat, August 12, 2010.

Drs. Castells and Wyles have conducted the Ophthalmic Photo Contest in the Ophthalmic Imaging elective, ELE (026). Each ICO student photographer was evaluated on the following criteria:
• Structure of interest is in focus
• Good composition
• Appropriate exposure
• Appropriate lighting
• Photo is free of artifacts and/or unwanted components
The winners of the Ophthalmic Imaging Elective Course were:
• 1st place - Mary Burgos
• 2nd place - Erica Schuette
• 3rd place - Poonam Patel
• Honorable mention - Joel Quist for his excellent images of interesting diseases and lesions, often in actual clinic patients.

Dr. Maino has received word that the PEDIG Operations Committee has approved him to become a Co-Investigator at the current existing PEDIG site at the College.

Dr. Taylor notes that August September Lions Share, Official Newsletter of the Lions of Illinois Foundation recognizes the College: “With great providers such as the Spectrios Institute (Deicke), the College of Optometry and the Chicago Lighthouse leading the way, the precious children of Illinois were always assured of receiving the best care possible.”

Dr. Richard Kattouf, Chair, ICO BOT, published: Kattouf RS. Want to build a healthier practice? August 2010 Optometric Management, p. 21. ( )Kattouf RS. Trapped by “stinkin’-thinkin’”? July 2010 Optometric Management, p. 28. ( )

Dr. Reeder provided CE at the South Carolina Optometric meeting on August 28, 2010. Her topic was Update on Contact Lenses.

Dr. Joo Kyung Bok visited the College from Seoul, Korea and spent time with Dr. Maino. ICO students, Linda Hur and Angela To communicated with Dr. Bok in Korean and greatly assisted the visit. A different group from Korea visited last year.

Dr. Wyles administrated the August administration of the NBEO Part III: Clinical Skills Examination (CSE) that rotates to ICO every two years on August 21-22, 2010. About 60 students (none of which were from ICO) took the exam.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Too Few Infants Get Comprehensive Eye Assessments; One in 10 Have Undetected Vision Problems

American Optometric Association's Annual American Eye-Q® Survey Shows Less than a Quarter of Infants Receive Comprehensive Eye Assessments

ST. LOUIS, Aug. 24 /PRNewswire/ -- One in 10 infants in the U.S. have undetected vision problems, ranging from crossed eyes to cancer. While most parents know eye and vision problems can be detected in children before they're a year old, only 19 percent of those who participated in the American Optometric Association's (AOA) annual Eye-Q® survey report taking their infant for a comprehensive eye assessment. Thirty-three percent of parents wait until their child is between one and two years of age, while 26 percent wait until their child is five years of age or older.

"It is critical that infants undergo a comprehensive eye assessment from an optometrist by the time they turn a year old," said Dr. Glen Steele, optometrist and chair of the InfantSEE® committee, a program of Optometry Cares - The AOA Foundation. "Optometrists have the clinical background and expertise to detect eye and vision problems as well as ensure your baby has healthy eyes and their vision is developing appropriately."

Unfortunately, only 19 percent of respondents know that cancer can be detected in an infant's eyes, while the majority of respondents understand problems like lazy eye (amblyopia), crossed eyes, nearsightedness and farsightedness could be identified.

"Early intervention is essential for maintaining infant eye and vision health," said Dr. Steele. "Most conditions are easier to treat when caught early."

Traditional eye chart testing requires identification of letters or symbols and demands sustained attention, making it impossible to use with infants and toddlers. Instead, an evaluation of visual acuity includes tests to assess whether an infant can fix his eyes on an object and follow the object, or identify which objects the baby prefers to look and at what distances.

"It is crucial that parents understand the importance of comprehensive eye exams for infants and how they are administered," said Dr. Steele. "The good news about a trip to the optometrist is that most babies seem to enjoy the 'games' we use to determine whether their visual development is progressing normally and their eyes are healthy."

Demographic Comparisons

Ethnicity Comparisons

According to the 2010 Eye-Q® survey, Hispanics (26 percent) are more likely than Caucasians (17 percent) and African-Americans (16 percent) to take their baby for a comprehensive eye assessment before their first birthday. The majority of Caucasians (35 percent) wait until their child is between one and two years of age, while the majority of African-Americans (36 percent) wait until their child is five years of age or older to have a comprehensive eye exam administered.

Gender Comparisons

Surprisingly, more men (21 percent) than women (17 percent) report having their infants' eyes checked by an eye doctor between six months and one year of age. In addition, the majority of male respondents (37 percent) reported their child having a comprehensive eye exam for the first time between one and two years of age, compared to the majority of female respondents (37 percent) who said their child was five years or older.

How the AOA Can Help

Optometry Cares - The AOA Foundation and Vistakon®, Johnson & Johnson Vision Care, Inc. created InfantSEE®, a no-cost public health program developed to provide professional eye care for infants nationwide. Through InfantSEE®, optometrists provide a one-time, comprehensive eye assessment to infants between six and 12 months of age, regardless of a parent's ability to pay.

The AOA recommends that infants have an InfantSEE® assessment before their first birthday and young children have comprehensive eye exams at age three, before starting school and then every two years thereafter.

Parents wanting to know more about the InfantSEE® program and to find a local doctor can go to or call toll-free 1-888-396-EYES (3937).

About the survey:

The fifth annual American Eye-Q® survey was created and commissioned in conjunction with Penn, Schoen & Berland Associates (PSB). From April 14-21, 2010, using an online methodology, PSB interviewed 1,007 Americans 18 years and older who embodied a nationally representative sample of U.S. general population. (Margin of error at 95 percent confidence level.)

About InfantSEE®

InfantSEE® is a public health program managed by Optometry Cares, The AOA Foundation. Designed to ensure that eye and vision care become an integral part of infant wellness and improve a child's quality of life, doctors of optometry provide one-time, no-cost eye and vision assessment to infants between the ages of 6 and 12 months regardless of family income or access to insurance coverage. For more information, visit

About the American Optometric Association (AOA):

The American Optometric Association represents approximately 36,000 doctors of optometry, optometry students and paraoptometric assistants and technicians. Optometrists serve patients in nearly 6,500 communities across the country, and in 3,500 of those communities are the only eye doctors. Doctors of optometry provide two-thirds of all primary eye care in the United States.

American Optometric Association doctors of optometry are highly qualified, trained doctors on the frontline of eye and vision care who examine, diagnose, treat and manage diseases and disorders of the eye. In addition to providing eye and vision care, optometrists play a major role in a patient's overall health and well-being by detecting systemic diseases such as diabetes and hypertension.

Prior to optometry school, optometrists typically complete four years of undergraduate study, culminating in a bachelor's degree. Required undergraduate coursework for pre-optometry students is extensive and covers a wide variety of advanced health, science and mathematics.

Optometry school consists of four years of post-graduate, doctoral study concentrating on both the eye and systemic health. In addition to their formal training, doctors of optometry must undergo annual continuing education to stay current on the latest standards of care. For more information, visit

Comments: The AOA does an outstanding job in getting the word out about the importance of evaluating infant's vision. I would also suggest that you take a look at for docs who can help as well. DM

Infants and Vision Problems: problems come as they grow

...According to the American Optometric Association, most infants are born with healthy eyes and begin to develop vision problems as they grow older. Indications of difficulties with vision in infants include excessive tearing, extreme sensitivity to light, encrusted or red eye lids, turning the eyes constantly, and white pupils....Anything unusual that parents notice with their child’s vision should be brought to the attention of your optometrist immediately. The AOA explains the normal steps of an infant's vision development on its website. Even if a child does not show any signs of vision problems, he or she should have their first eye examination by an optometrist at around six months of age. ... Dr. Glen Steele, optometrist and chair of the InfantSEE committee, a program of Optometry Cares The AOA Foundation, emphasizes that “the good news about a trip to the optometrist is that most babies seem to enjoy the ‘games’ we use to determine whether their visual development is progressing normally and their eyes are healthy.”...

Vision tests via cellphone could aid poor nations

...Around the world, half a billion people live with uncorrected vision problems, according to World Health Organization estimates, in part because eye specialists are rare in the developing world....a team at the MIT Media Lab believes it can help restore sharp eyesight to many of these people, with a vision test that uses cellphones, an inexpensive clip-on eyepiece, and free software.....

Decline in Kids' Pneumonia Linked to Vaccine Use

...The use of pneumococcal conjugate vaccine appears to have reduced the incidence of pediatric bacterial pneumonia by 20%....

Widespread parental misuse of medicines puts children at risk

...We were surprised and concerned to find that some people thought that medicines must be safe because you can buy them without prescription... studied 97 adults from day-care centres in Sydney; 53 mothers, 7 fathers, and 37 day care staff over a five month period ... age range of children ...from four to five years old. ... 44% of participants would have given an incorrect dose,... only 64% were able to measure accurately the dose they intended to give. ......Paracetamol [acetaminophen] was the preferred treatment, even for coughs and cold, and was used most .. - 61% of the time - despite the child having no fever. Only 14% of carers managed the fever scenario correctly....

Monday, August 30, 2010

Opera Gala Benefit Concert

I've had an opportunity to sing with many of the opera stars noted below on past occasions (I was in the middle of the tenor section among the choir). These talented musicians have performed at the Metropolitan in New York and the Lyric Opera in Chicago. Even though I cannot sing with this fine group this time (I'm giving some lectures in Mexico). I urge all of you in the Chicago-land area to go to this performance. You will be amazed at how much you really like opera!! DM


Opera Gala Benefit Concert
A fundraising benefit concert to support the music ministry of St. Benedict Church

Featuring favorite arias, duets and choruses from Rigoletto, Marriage of Figaro,La Traviata, La Boheme, Carmen, Lakme and Lucia di Lammermoor

In a performance by:

Kimberly Jones, Soprano, Kirsten Leslie, Soprano; Deb Guscott, Mezzo-soprano; Elena Snow, Mezzo-soprano; Rodell Rosel, Tenor; Levi Hernandez, Baritone; Paul Radulescu, Baritone; Sebastian Huydts, Piano; Sara Su Jones, Violin

The Romanian Madrigal Consort; Members of the Apollo Chorus; St. Benedict Chorale


SEPTEMBER 10 at 8:00pm

ST. BENEDICT CHURCH 2215 W. Irving Park Rd. Chicago, IL 60618

$15 in advance through September 8 $20 at the door ($12 Students and Seniors)
For TICKETS and Information Call (773)588-6484
Email: [email protected]
All proceeds will benefit the music ministry at St. Benedict Church

ADHD and Convergence Insufficiency

I am now being followed on Twitter by the Adults with Attention Deficit Disorder Association. When I went to their site nothing was mentioned about the possibility of ADHD and CI being linked. Just a reminder, CI and ADHD appear often together and can confound a diagnosis.

Please see: Granet DB, Gomi CF, Ventura R, Miller-Scholte AThe relationship between convergence insufficiency and ADHD.Strabismus. 2005 Dec;13(4):163-8.

Thye abstract noted that"....Children being evaluated for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) often have an eye exam as part of their evaluation. The symptoms of convergence insufficiency (CI) can make it difficult for a student to concentrate on extended reading and overlap with those of ADHD....We report an apparent three-fold greater incidence of ADHD among patients with CI when compared with the incidence of ADHD in the general US population (1.8-3.3%). We also note a seeming three-fold greater incidence of CI in the ADHD population. ...

Comment: I know this study was done with children....but children grow up and become adults with ADD/ADHS and CI. I would love to do a study with ADD/ADHD adults to see if CI is also a concern for that population. DM