Saturday, July 2, 2011


....Dr. Sandy Block and Dr. Christine Allison accepted the award on behalf of ICO at a reception held on June 10 before the Special Olympics Illinois Summer Games Opening Ceremonies at Illinois State University in Normal.
           The Outstanding Organization Award recognizes a club, business or organization whose efforts have significantly improved the Special Olympics Illinois athletes’ experiences either locally or statewide.
           ICO has volunteered its time and efforts to Special Olympics Illinois (SO ILL) for the past 11 years. It is because of ICO that the Opening Eyes program has become a part of SO ILL. The organization provides free eye screenings to an average of 240 athletes each year. They have handed out over 2,520 prescription glasses and 630 sports goggles so far....

Comments: Read more by clicking the title above. DM

Elsevier has some Great Journals. Take a look at these!

Brain and Development
BRAIN STIMULATION: Basic, Translational, and Clinical Research in Neuromodulation
Clinical Neurology and Neurosurgery
Clinical Neurology News
Clinical Neurophysiology
Clinical Neuroscience Research
Electroencephalography and Clinical Neurophysiology/Electromyography and Motor Control
Electroencephalography and Clinical Neurophysiology/Evoked Potentials Section
Epilepsy and Behavior
Epilepsy Research
European Journal of Paediatric Neurology
European Journal of Pain
European Journal of Pain Supplements
Experimental Neurology
Journal of Clinical Neuroscience
Journal of Electromyography & Kinesiology
Journal of Neuroimmunology
Journal of Pain and Symptom Management
Journal of Stroke and Cerebrovascular Diseases
Journal of the Neurological Sciences
Multiple Sclerosis and Related Disorders
Neuromuscular Disorders
Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews
Parkinsonism and Related Disorders
Pediatric Neurology
Prostaglandins, Leukotrienes & Essential Fatty Acids
Psychiatry Research: Neuroimaging
Scandinavian Journal of Pain
Schizophrenia Research
Seizure - European Journal of Epilepsy
Seminars in Cerebrovascular Disease and Stroke
Seminars in Pediatric Neurology
Sleep Medicine Reviews
The Spine Journal
World Neurosurgery

New Study Uncovers Mechanism For Stress-Induced Epigenetic Inheritance

....Researchers at RIKEN have uncovered a mechanism by which the effects of stress in the fly species Drosophila are inherited epigenetically over many generations through changes to the structure of chromatin, the material that makes up the cell nucleus. Published in the journal Cell, the results highlight the role of the transcription factor dATF-2 in chromatin assembly, marking a major advance in our understanding of non-Mendelian inheritance....

Comments: I am fascinated by epigenetics. The environment can make a permanent change in you DNA that is than transmitted to your offspring. This is more like Lamarckian inheritance....where an organism can pass on traits it developed via the environment. BTW up until recent history...there had been a major battle between Mendelian inheritance believers and those who believed in Lamarckian inheritance. It seems as if...both are valid! DM

Infrared radiation has potential antidepressant and anxiolytic effects in animal model of depression and anxiety

The researchers found that: "Chronic infrared radiation exposure decreased indicators of depression- and anxiety-like behavior. No significant effect on general locomotor activity was observed. The number of BrdU-positive cells in CA1 of the hippocampus was significantly increased in both acutely and chronically exposed infrared radiation groups compared with the control group."

Comments: Optometry has been using light as therapy for some time. If you'd like more information about this go to the College of Syntonic Optometry to learn more. Please note that a great deal of research needs to be done in this area. We do know that using light as therapy goes back centuries, in fact Ben Franklin used to "sun bath" in all his sans-clothes glory to seek out the benefits of light. Today we use full spectrum lighting for depression, ultraviolet for jaundice in infants and LASERs for a wide variety of medical interventions. DM

Invited Speaker:Vision's Impact on Learning Conference Learning Insights

I have been invited to speak at the fall meeting of the Vision's Impact on Learning Conference. The group that is sponsoring this meeting is a 501(c)3 organization established in Feb. 2008 to assume responsibility for the Vision Intervention Program (V. I. P.) which was begun under another not for profit agency.

The V. I. P. was developed by a team of behavioral optometrist including Dr. David Pierce, Dr. Ralph Garzia, Dr. David Coleman, and others from Missouri. The purpose of the program is to train school personnel to screen K - 3 students for vision challenges, provide tutoring at school for those that have issues and encourage parents to take their children to a behavioral optometrist for further help. They currently have 42 buildings with over 12,000 students involved with the program.

Members of this group who do the screening and tutoring for the program must be re-certified and the conference I will talking at is the main vehicle to accomplish that goal. They also reach out to administrators, special education coordinators, physical and occupational therapist to share information about vision and ways to help students develop their vision skills. For more information go to 

Friday, July 1, 2011


....Only New, Safer Cribs will be Available for Consumer Purchase

In less than two weeks, a new generation of safer cribs will be for sale in retail stores across the country. On June 28, 2011, anyone that manufactures or sells baby cribs will be required to meet new and improved crib safety standards approved by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission on December 15, 2010.....

How to Tell if Your Personal Data Has Been Hacked

How to Tell if Your Personal Data Has Been Hacked

...There's been so many breaches of personal data recently that it is almost impossible for the average person to know whether their information may have been compromised. Was your email address and password stolen from Sony PlayStation's servers? How about the massive theft at Epsilon, email marketer for the Fortune 500? A new site called "Should I Change My Password?" is here to help....

As you know from past posts, my blogger colleague, Suzanne Kantra has a great blog about technology. This article tells you if you've been hacked. Click on the title above to learn more. DM

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

The Man Who Forgot How to Read and Other Stories

...Presenter Alan Yentob meets clinical neurologist and author Dr Oliver Sacks to investigate the myriad ways we experience the visual world and the strange things that can happen when our mind fails to understand what our eyes see. ....He meets Stereo Sue, neurobiologist Sue Barry, who always saw the world as a flat 2D image until she suddenly acquired stereoscopic 3D vision in her late forties; ....

Comments: This is a video by BBC One. Unfortunately, across the video was the phrase "Not Available in Your Area"....which I do not understand...since my area is the internet and the connected world. In any case, Susan Berry, PhD of StereoSue fame will be a part of the program. Let me know if it is "Available in Your Area!"DM

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Vision Therapy Is Missing Link For Struggling Readers Experts Say

....According to multiple reading experts, Pediatricians, eye doctors and the daughter of a former President, vision therapy is likely the single biggest missing link which would help struggling readers....Given that the National Assessment of Educational Progress in the Nation's Report Card says that nearly 70% of America's students are not reading at grade level, it may be time to take a look at a solution such as vision therapy to solve one of the biggest crises America faces......

Out-of-Sync Brain May Be a Clue to Autism

....A brain that is out of sync may be an early clue of autism, researchers suggest.....Toddlers with autism are more likely to have abnormal synchronization between certain brain areas than other kids the same age, even those with language delays, according to a new study.....''There seems to be impaired or reduced synchronization between the right and left hemispheres, specifically the areas involved in language and communication," says researcher Ilan Dinstein, PhD, a postdoctoral fellow at the Weizmann Institute of Science in Rehovot, Israel.....The study was done at the University of California, San Diego. It is published in the journal Neuron.....

Monday, June 27, 2011

Tinted Lenses and Vision Function

By clicking on the title above you will see several abstracts concerning the use of tinted lenses. Most of these studies do not support the use of tinted/colored lens for treatment of reading problems, eye strain, head ache, etc. DM

The Role of Vision in Learning: A View from Scotland

Dr. Nadia Northway presented this information during a conference a couple of years ago. It is interesting how similar what she what we are doing here in the US. Take a look at her presenation outline by clicking the title above. DM

Study finds poor eyesight hampers adult literacy

A very high percentage of adults with literacy difficulties may simply have a problem with their eyesight, a four-year study carried out across Scotland has found. ..... that almost all of the adult learners with literacy problems who were selected to take part in the research had some form of impaired vision.....Dr Nadia Northway, from Glasgow Caledonian University’s Vision Science Department, said: “At one point we had assessed 108 adults and found visual processing problems in 107, ranging from ...minor things; such as people who needed reading glasses but hadn’t got them, to binocular vision problems.”.....“What was really exciting was that we were able to improve the visual perception skills of the adults,” she said. “We weren’t sure this would work as adults’ brains are quite hard wired, unlike children’s minds.” ....

Comments: I'm hoping to go to the International Brain Injury meeting this spring in Edinburgh, Scotland....and do a bit of traveling either before or after the meeting. Perhaps I will get a chance to talk to Dr. Northway...we have a great deal in common. My congratulations to the Scotts! A pilot study can be found by clicking here. DM

iPad/iPod and AAC Applications: Making it Work

iPad/iPod and AAC Applications: Making it Work

June 30, 2011
1:30 pm - 4:30pm
Presented by: ATU Augmentative and Alternative Communication Clinicians
Renée Jordan, MS CCC-SLP/L , Patricia Politano, PhD, CCC-SLP/L, ATP

CEUs and CPDUs Available!

This seminar will include demonstrations of a range of apps for augmentative communication. In addition, information will be provided about adaptations that can be made through settings, restrictions and accessories to make iPads and iPods work for individuals who need AAC. This seminar is designed for speech/language pathologists and special educators.

Registration Fees: $95 per person. Groups of 3 or more from the same location, $85 per person.

For more information on this seminar and registration enrollment, visit or call Karen Haasen at 312-413-9065.
Fax your registration form now to 312-413-3709!

Omega 3 and Dry Eye

....Systemic and topical omega-3 fatty acids and omega-6 fatty acids have been used recently as an adjunctive treatment for patients with dry eye disease. They appear to have efficacy against the symptoms of dry eye that many patients experience. This symptom is postulated to be secondary to the anti-inflammatory effects that have been previously described. Although this effect is promising, more investigation is warranted in order to standardize indication for use, and composition and dosing for treatment.....

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Seven Ways to Pay for Vision Therapy

1.        Appeal to your employer
Try contacting your employer and ask them to make an exception for your child’s vision care in your insurance plan.
2.       Finance through Care Credit Care Credit is a reputable company that can help you finance vision therapy costs.  Care Credit provides you with a revolving line of credit that you can use for vision therapy treatment, or any other type of medical expenses, such as braces. They offer affordable monthly payment plans that can get your costs below $100 a month.
3.       Take out a home equity loan or home equity line of credit A home equity loan or line of credit is generally tax-deductible, which puts more money back in your pocket.
4.       Reach out to churches, friends and family Patients often reach out to their community for help.  It’s easy to swallow your pride and ask for some help when it’s for your child’s health.  You’ll be surprised how receptive people will be when they understand the cause.  Don’t be afraid to reach out.
5.       Get a credit card with zero percent APR introductory rates While credit may still be tight thanks to the recession, you may be able to find a credit card that will offer you a six-month, zero percent introductory rate.   Pay back the loan aggressively, and you could finance the treatment without paying any interest.
6.        Use your flex spending program This is another very popular approach.  Based on your tax bracket, it’s a way to save significantly on your costs by spending the money on a pre-tax basis. 
7.        Appeal to community groups

A Defect That May Lead to a Masterpiece

....In learning to draw or paint, it helps to have a sense of composition, color and originality.
And depth perception? Maybe not so much, neuroscientists are now suggesting. Instead, so-called stereo blindness — in which the eyes are out of alignment so the brain cannot fuse the images from each one — may actually be an asset.....

Correcting the vision of those that can't see 3-D movies

...In the past few years, 3-D movies have become a huge draw, in both theaters and on digital television, but a significant percentage of the audience isn't actually experiencing the effect. That problem could point to an eye condition that's often treatable....