Saturday, February 5, 2011

American Optometric Association Optometry's Meeting Registration

Optometry's Meeting IPhone app

For all other phone types (including Android and BlackBerry) point your mobile browser to

Kids Like Their iPods. Their Parents? E-Readers

All will need the appropriate visual abilities to appreciate this technology. See your optometrist today...and bring that technology with you so we can help you use it to the best of your ability. DM

The Impact of Pediatric Vision Disorders in Adulthood

....In addition to refractive errors such as myopia and astigmatism, ocular disorders that occur in infants, toddlers, and children may present lifelong problems for the child. Conditions such as strabismus, amblyopia, and retinopathy of prematurity may require adaptations in adulthood. In addition, vision disorders that occur in childhood may manifest as problems well into adulthood. When visual impairment is present, there may be further effects on overall health, self-perception, educational attainment, job choices, and a number of other social factors.....

Comments: Yet another good reason that our ophthalmology colleagues should join with optometry to demand that all of our children receive comprehensive eye examinations and not just vision screenings. Vision screenings miss too much too often, cannot be supported by research, and results in problems well into adulthood. DM

Perceptual learning, aging, and improved visual performance in early stages of visual processing

....These results indicate that perceptual learning with near threshold training can be used to improve visual performance among older individuals....

Comments: See full PDF by clicking on title above. DM

Friday, February 4, 2011

Binocular Vision & Pediatrics Forum

The Ohio State University College of Optometry is proud to present the

Binocular Vision & Pediatrics Forum

Friday, March 18, 2011

Binocular Vision & Pediatrics Forum
Friday, March 18, 2011 at The OSU College of Optometry (room 33), Columbus, Ohio

Speaker: Michael Bartiss, O.D., M.D.
Session Topics:  The Pediatric Motility Examination  2 hours
Clinical Pediatric Eye Grand Rounds  2 hours
A Systematic Approach to the Evaluation and Treatment of Adults with Diplopia  2 hours
Neuro-Motility Disorders  1 hour

Please visit OSU's CE website at or email us at [email protected] for more information and registration details.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

AOA Says 3-D May Not Be Bad For Children After All

From AOA First Look:

AOA Says 3-D May Not Be Bad For Children After All.

In "In-Game," MSNBC Share to FacebookShare to Twitter (1/6, Benedetti) reports, "Nintendo, Sony and Toshiba have all issued warnings telling parents to keep young children from playing 3-D games and watching movies shown in 3-D." Now, however, "an organization representing family eye doctors says 3-D may not be bad for kids after all. In fact, the American Optometric Association has issued a statement Share to FacebookShare to Twitter saying that the 3-D in movies, TV and games is may 'help uncover subtle disorders that, left uncorrected, often result in learning difficulties.'"

3D TV & Movies May Reveal Hidden Vision Problems thinks the company is likely being cautious because of a lack of research on the effects of long-term 3D viewing on young children’s vision development.  This may be a wise precautionary choice for parents, however the American Optometric Association (AOA) recently released a statement saying it is safe if the child’s visual system is developing normally.  The AOA went on to suggest 3D viewing of movies, TV and the Nintendo 3DS may actually help diagnose disorders, like convergence insufficiency, that should be corrected. ...

Beyond patching: Stella’s vision therapy now includes MFBF

...Ever since Stella’s vision therapy progress evaluation which showed great gains, we’ve been doing a bit of what Susan Barry discusses on page 150 of Fixing My Gaze: monocular fixation in a binocular field (MFBF). This means that instead of being completely excluded via the patch, the stronger eye is merely put at a disadvantage. Her dominant eye is still able to receive and contribute visual input, allowing the eyes to work together, but the amblyopic eye is forced to do the heavy lifting. Several doctors/researchers, over several decades, have endorsed the effectiveness of this approach (Brock, Cohen and Hess for starters)....

Vision Disorder Often Misdiagnosed as ADHD

....Kids who can't concentrate at school are often diagnosed with ADHD while others are said to have a learning disability and that can impact their entire education. We've uncovered many kids may be getting the wrong treatment -- from doctors and teachers. A number that we found is one million. One million American children may be misdiagnosed with ADHD, according to researchers at Michigan State University....Grant's mother is a teacher and heard from colleagues that Grant might have convergence insufficiency. That's a visual disorder where people -- even with 20/20 vision -- can't focus on the words they're reading...

Comments: See video on KAALtv by clicking on the title above. DM

Books About Living With Autism


The management of childhood esotropia with hyperopia.

....Treatment of esotropia in children with hyperopia includes wearing glasses, glasses combined with prism glasses and surgery. Prismatic correction in the treatment of small angle of residual esotropia in partial AE was feasible and efficacious. Since the follow-up lasted only a year, a long-term follow-up is needed in future studies to investigate the efficiency of the treatments....

Comments: It is unfortunate that they do not consider optometric vision therapy BEFORE invasive surgery. DM

3D is all the rage, but causes headaches for many

The AOA spokesperson on 3 D Vision Syndrome, Dr. Dominick Maino shown on WLBZ in Bangor, ME.

WRCB TV shows Dr. Maino's Comments on 3D Vision Syndrome

...CHATTANOOGA (WRCB)-- Three-dimensional TVs and movies may be all the rage in Hollywood, but for many people they can cause a raging headache.

It's a scene that producers probably didn't foresee.

Watching 3-D movies gives some viewers such nausea and headaches that they're forced to leave theaters long before the credits roll.

"There are some folks who also develop dizziness and vision-induced motion sickness," says Dr. Dominick Maino, American Optometric Association....

Reliability of Eye Tracking and Pupillometry Measures in Individuals with Fragile X Syndrome.

Farzin F, Scaggs F, Hervey C, Berry-Kravis E, Hessl D.Reliability of Eye Tracking and Pupillometry Measures in Individuals with Fragile X Syndrome.J Autism Dev Disord. 2011 Jan 26. [Epub ahead of print]

Department of Psychology, Stanford University, 450 Serra Mall, Stanford, CA, 94305, USA, [email protected]


Recent insight into the underlying molecular and cellular mechanisms of fragile X syndrome (FXS) has led to the proposal and development of new pharmaceutical treatment strategies, and the initiation of clinical trials aimed at correcting core symptoms of the developmental disorder. Consequently, there is an urgent and critical need for outcome measures that are valid for quantifying specific symptoms of FXS and that are consistent across time. We used eye tracking to evaluate test-retest reliability of gaze and pupillometry measures in individuals with FXS and we demonstrate that these measures are viable options for assessing treatment-specific outcomes related to a core behavioral feature of the disorder.

New Open Access Journals Available

GMS Health Technology Assessment
    ISSN: 1861-8863 (electronic)
    Archive includes 1(2005) to the present
    Note: There is no embargo delay for this journal

American Public Health Association's first ever Midyear Meeting

Registration is now open for the American Public Health Association's first ever Midyear Meeting. Join APHA in Chicago, IL from June 23-25, 2011 to discuss Implementing Health Reform - A Public Health Approach. This meeting will equip attendees from federal, state, local and tribal agencies and organizations with the tools needed for implementing the provisions of the Affordable Care Act and improving health outcomes in communities across the country. For a full description of the meeting visit

The use of distance stereoacuity assessment in determining the effectiveness of minus lenses in intermittent exotropia

....Distance stereoacuity (and binocular visual acuity) cannot reliably be used to determine the optimum minus lens strength that could be used in these patients to reduce the angle of deviation and regain binocularity in the distance. An additional observation was made that stronger lenses should perhaps be avoided to prevent binocular and visual discomfort.....

Comments: Although I use additional minus at distance when appropriate... there are several possible problems with using minus lenses for divergence excess...the common one I see is that the doctor doesn't bring the patient back for follow-up and the patient is looking thru this over correction for a very long time...and seldom do I see docs provide an add for near use so that the patient is at least emmetropic at near...and not being forced to use and excessive accommodative effort when reading or doing other near point tasks. Use all the tools available...but use them not create a problem where there was none by over minusing and then not following this patient carefully. BTW...I didn't read in the abstract that the researchers used a cover test to see how successful they were in eliminating the strabismus...that's strange. DM

Complementary and alternative medicine for prevention and treatment of the common cold

... For prevention, vitamin C demonstrated benefit in a large metaanalysis, with possibly increased benefit in patients subjected to cold stress. There is inconsistent evidence for Asian ginseng (Panax ginseng) and North American ginseng (Panax quinquefolius). Allicin was highly effective in 1 small trial. For treatment, Echinacea purpurea is the most consistently useful variety; it was effective in 5 of 6 trials. Zinc lozenges were effective in 5 of 9 trials, likely owing to dose and formulation issues. Overall, the evidence suggests no benefit from probiotics for prevention or treatment of the common cold. .....

Comments: I wish they would have also studied chicken soup! OK go out and get the vit C.. Full article is available free by clicking title above. DM

Brain pacemakers to help fight depression

.... Brain pacemakers are already being used to treat Parkinson's disease patients. Now, a new study has suggested that this deep brain stimulation technique could effectively help in the fight against depression....

Traumatic Brain Injury Completed and Ongoing Research

 Here is a partial listing on ongoing research in the area of TBI. It's interesting to note that few studies are looking at functional vision problems...nor do they include optometrists on the research team. Considering the number of vision problems folks with TBI have...that's unfortunate. DM

Therapy for Reading Problems in Adults After Brain Injury 

Adults who sustain brain damage due to stroke, head injury, or traumatic surgery may develop difficulty reading. This study examines the effectiveness of behavior-based programs to improve reading ability in these individuals.

Effects of Prismatic Spectacle Lenses on Symptoms of Dizziness, Headache and Anxiety as Caused by Vertical Heterophoria

 The purpose of this study is to demonstrate whether, in patients diagnosed with Vertical Heterophoria, the symptoms of dizziness, headache and / or anxiety are reduced or eliminated when a kind of correction called vertical prism is added to the patient's normal eye glass prescription.
The experiment will involve giving the patient two pairs of glasses (one pair containing the baseline prescription with vertical prism (Standard Treatment Glasses) and the other pair containing the baseline prescription but without vertical prism (Placebo Glasses)) to demonstrate which pair of glasses is most effective in reducing the symptoms of dizziness, headache and / or anxiety in these patients.

The purpose of this study is to validate and refine a diagnostic device that can detect attention and memory deficits that result from mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI).

he aim of the study is to compare a multidisciplinary examination and follow up by rehabilitation program with a multidisciplinary examination, good advice and follow up by the family doctor.

The study will evaluate the benefit of Deep Brain Stimulation for subjects with severe disability due to Traumatic Brain Injury
The study investigates whether the use of eye movement recordings can provide a reliable diagnostic of previously undiagnosed mild traumatic brain injury (blast and impact) in Operations Enduring Freedom or Iraqi Freedom (OIF/OEF) veterans.

 The current study is a double-blind, placebo-control randomized clinical trial examining the efficacy of memory retraining in Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI). Impairment in higher level cognitive processing, such as new learning and memory, is one of the most common deficits in individuals with TBI and such deficits have been shown to exert significant negative impact on multiple aspects of everyday life, including occupational and social functioning. Despite these findings, few studies have attempted to treat these cognitive deficits in order to improve the everyday functioning of individuals with TBI. The current proposal will evaluate (a)the efficacy of this treatment protocol within a TBI population,(b) the impact of the treatment on everyday functioning, (c) the long term efficacy of the treatment and (c) the utility of booster sessions in facilitating long-term treatment effects. The investigators will randomly assign individuals with TBI, with documented impairment in new learning abilities, to a memory retraining group or a placebo control group. Both groups will undergo baseline, immediate and long-term follow-up assessment consisting of: (1) a traditional neuropsychological battery and (2) an assessment of global functioning examining the impact of the treatment on daily activities. This design will allow us to evaluate the efficacy of this particular memory retraining technique in a TBI population through the assessment of cognitive function via a standard evaluation. In addition, the investigators will be able to draw conclusions regarding the impact of this particular memory remediation program on everyday life from questionnaires completed by the participant and a significant other.

This study is designed to examine the effects of a wake-promoting agent (Modafinil) on working memory (WM) in persons with moderate to severe TBI utilizing a double blinded placebo controlled methodology. Our approach is to evaluate participants with BOLD fMRI and a limited neuropsychological battery to examine WM performance before and after pharmacological intervention.
  1. Because increased cognitive effort (as a function of decreased efficiency after TBI) is presumed to underlie fMRI activation dispersion that is seen during central executive WM tasks, we anticipate an attenuation of cerebral activation in prefrontal cortex during pharmacological intervention with Modafinil when compared to placebo administration on the mPASAT and vigilance testing.
  2. There will be a correlation between the decreased dispersion of the fMRI signal on scans and improvement in neuropsychological measures when individuals are on Modafinil that is not seen when they are taking placebo.
The purpose of this research is to see whether adding a new therapy helps people with brain injury focus better and think more clearly. You are being asked to participate in this research study because you have had a brain injury. If you decide to volunteer, you will be in the study for about six months.As a participant, you will be randomly assigned to one of 2 treatment plans. Randomization is a process like flipping a coin and means you will have a chance of being assigned to either of the plans. One group will be given an experimental therapy using a metronome one hour a day, three times a week. A metronome is a device that produces a steady beat. You will need to keep time with the metronome doing several different movements. On each beat, you will be given information both through sound and on a computer screen about whether you were early or late and how far off beat you were. The tempo of the beat will be at 54 beats per minute, so you will need to process the feedback information very quickly to adjust your speed up or down to match the beat. The various movements include things like clapping hands, tapping toes, or alternating between different similar movements. It is hoped that the metronome will help subjects to concentrate better

The purpose of this research study is to find out whether Vyvanse, a psychostimulant, can help with attention deficits due to traumatic brain injury (TBI). Vyvanse is currently approved for the treatment of Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity (ADHD). The exact effects this drug may have on attention deficits caused by TBI are not known, but we expect that Vyvanse will be of some help in treating those types of problems as well. The study will utilize functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) methods, as well as neural-behavioral measures, to elucidate neural mechanisms of response.

 The purpose of this study will be to assess the attentional ability of patients with mild to moderate traumatic brain injury (TBI) using the functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) technique. Methodology for specific aim 1: sagittal pilot scan, 3-D anatomical MRI, Whole brain echo-planar imaging (EPI), and functional MRI techniques with traumatic brain injured subjects doing a Continuous Performance Test (CPT) attention task and compare the pattern of activation with those of normal controls to see if there is a failure to activate frontal lobes in the traumatic brain injured subjects.

The purpose of this project is to determine the effects of mild traumatic brain injury and blast exposure on the inner ear balance and central nervous systems.
...and more...

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

A Fascinating Discussion

The incredible discussion between David Granet, MD and Leonard Press, OD continues at VisionHelpBlog. Dr. Granet appears to be an almost one of a kind OMD who has at least a basic understanding of optometric vision therapy! There are some differences however as this discussion notes...

We should probably not blame him if his professional organizations continue to proclaim themselves as the Doctors of NO.

Optometry says YES...all children should have comprehensive eye and vision examinations starting at an early age so that we can stamp out amblyopia (lazy eye) in our lifetimes...and goes on to create the InfantSee program that provides eye assessments for children 6-12 months at no charge.

Optometry says YES to the basic public health idea that all children should have comprehensive eye and vision examinations while in school ... while our ophthalmology colleagues say "NO" to full eye examinations because, they say, vision screenings are "good enough" for our children. If you've been paying attention to this blog, you know that the studies done on vision screenings are so poor, that other studies evaluating these vision screening articles state that they can't determine if vision screenings are effective or not! You know that Janet Hughes of the Vision First Foundation (  was so upset that her children had significant vision problems that were missed during a vision screening, that she (almost single-handedly) had the law changed in Illinois so that at least Kindergarten children had to have full eye examinations before they could get into school.

Optometry for decades has said YES to the fact that optometric vision therapy significantly improved the quality of life for our patients with binocular vision problems....and even after NIH NEI supported randomized, placebo controlled clinical trials show this to be true, ophthalmology says NO and denies the evidence in front of them ... even when they participated in the studies. Read: Maino D. An Open Letter to David K Wallace, MD, MPH (and other disbelievers and holders of outdated and biased opinions and beliefs). Optom Vis Dev 2008;39(4):178-180.

and...finally....optometry says YES ... vision problems affect learning...while ophthalmology says NO ...and re-publishes unsupported reasons to bolster yet another NO position (See: Retract the Joint Medical Statement trivializing vision problems in kids)

It is past time for all OD's and OMD's to work together for the benefit of our patients... someday we might just do that. Optometry says YES! What do you think ophthalmolgy says? DM

Monday, January 31, 2011

AOA Contact Lens and Cornea Section Newsletter

If you are interested in Contact Lenses consider joining the AOA CLCS
Here's some info....

A Word from Our Chair    Christine W. Sindt, O.D.

The new year brings new possibilities, and what a great time to be a member of the AOA Contact Lens and Cornea Section. Looking at the year ahead we will be launching our online corneal atlas, an adverse event reporting system, a contact lens FAQ Web site for consumers and a whole new contact lens and cornea track at Optometry's Meeting®. But rest assured that we will be not be discontinuing our tried-and-true member benefits, such as the monthly newsletter for up-to-date industry news and clinical pearls, our very generous student/resident essay scholarships and travel grants, our coupon book, our State of the Industry Luncheon at Optometry's Meeting® and, of course, the Korb Award Reception on Friday night where friends of the CLCS meet for food and festivities. FULL STORY

A Word from Our Editors     David Yang, O.D., Jeffrey Sonsino, O.D.

The Contact Lens and Cornea Section (CLCS) newsletter is a monthly publication dedicated to examining the most relevant topics in a modern contact lens practice. It is a non-biased and evidence-based source of information produced by some of the country's brightest minds in anterior segment. We hope you will consider joining the CLCS in order to benefit from this wonderful resource. FULL STORY

In this issue...

Scleral Lenses and Corneal Edema     Ed Bennett, O.D.

Hypoxia, Corneal Morbidity and Extended-Wear Contact Lenses   Randall McPherran, O.D.

Limbal Hyperemia and Hypoxia  Dora Sztipanovits, O.D.

Let's Get Our Terms Straight: Vascular Encroachment and Neovascularization    Renee Phipps, O.D.

Is Silicone the Answer?   Gregg Eric Russell, O.D.

Resident's Corner: Treatments for Corneal Neovascularization  Lindsay Sicks, O.D.

Back to Basics: Review of Oxygen-Related Terms Associated with Contact Lenses   Jared Jaynes

Industry News   Dianne Anderson, O.D.

Children and Contact Lens Survey Results

Be a Member. Get a Member.
The AOA Contact Lens and Cornea Section offers its members exceptional leadership, education and clinical information -- all aimed at helping optometrists provide the highest quality patient care. Share your interests and enthusiasm! Be a CLCS member. Get a member.

Comments: Click on the title above to learn more. DM

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Do You See With Your Eyes Or With Your Brain and … What Difference Does It Make?

My good friend and colleague, Dr. Len Press, recently commented on the show, The Doctors, and an interview that was done with well known ophthalmologist, Dr. David Granet. Dr. Granet has published several good papers... many of which I have commented on in this blog.

The best part of this blog post is when Drs. Press and Granet fire some fairly friendly volleys across each others bow in the comments section. Dr. Granet has a better understanding of optometric vision therapy than the majority of his colleagues since he participated in a program of vision therapy as a child. Unfortunately he still has little understanding of learning related vision problems and how these can affect a child's school performance.    Dr. Press did suggest that he read a fine text by

Mitchell Scheiman OD and Michael W. Rouse OD MS FAAO entitled Optometric Management of Learning Related Vision Problems....  

Of course, I could be biased since I wrote a chapter in this text (Maino D. Overview of special populations. In Scheiman M, Rouse M. (eds) Optometric management of learning related vision problems. St. Louis, MO: Mosby Inc. 2006;85-106.)

I am hoping that unlike most of his OMD colleagues who would not read non-MD texts, that he will take a moment to do this. Len also suggested that he read the works of Hal Solan (an incredible OD and researcher) who has published numerous papers on vision and learning.

A recent article in an ophthalmology journal (BMC Ophthalomolgy), A survey of visual function in an Austrian population of school-age children with reading and writing difficulties, found that there was a very high number of binocular vision problems for those with reading/writing difficulties. This study notes that it "... confirms the importance of a full assessment of binocular visual status in order to detect and remedy these deficits in order to prevent the visual problems continuing to impact upon educational development." Let me emphasize this order to prevent visual problems continuing to impact educational development...these researchers of the Vision Science Research Group, School of Biomedical Sciences, University of Ulster, Coleraine, Co. Londonderry BT52 1SA, UK didn't seem to see a problem with vision dysfunction adversely affecting reading. Although this was a retrospective study it did have a matched control group. If you click on the title of the paper, you will be able to download it immediately.

Also check out the following papers:

Vision, Visual-Information Processing, and Academic Performance Among Seventh-Grade Schoolchildren: A More Significant Relationship Than We Thought? by Sarina Goldst, Kenneth C. Koslowe and Shula Parush (full pdf available by clicking on title of paper) 

 (Dr. Koslowe and Dr. Scheiman are both on the Journal Review Board of Optometry & Vision Development)

In any case my OMD colleagues are very slowly (very, very slowly) starting to accept more and more of what developmental optometry has been doing for decades. .... and conversely....optometry and ophthalmology are starting to produce research that has results most of us can agree on.