Saturday, August 6, 2011

Maryland Optometric Association Annual Convention & Continuing Education Forum

Maryland Optometric Association Annual Convention & Continuing Education Forum
Dec. 2-4, 2011
Hyatt Regency Baltimore
Baltimore, Md.

Kristen Philips
Fax: 410-752-8295

Ophthalmic findings in Angelman syndrome.

....Ametropia >1 D was present in 97% of cases: myopia, ... hyperopia...., and astigmatism..... ... Strabismus, most frequently exotropia,.... Ocular hypopigmentation ......

Comments: Also see Schneider B, Maino D. Angelman syndrome. J Am Optom Assoc 1993;64:502-6 DM

Kids With ADHD More Likely To Be Hit By A Car

....A child with Attention Deficit-Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) has a greater chance of being hit by a car while walking about in the streets compared to other children without any developmental disability, researchers reported in the medical journal Pediatrics. Quite simply because they become easily distracted, the authors wrote.....

Friday, August 5, 2011

3D Eye Clinic Grand Opening:Vision Performance Institute

My friend and colleague, Jim Sheedy, OD, PhD who is the Director of the Pacific University College of Optometry Vision Performance Institute just emailed me this announcement concerning establishing a 3D Eye Clinic in Beaverton, OR. If you are in town, please drop by. I know Jim would love to see you there! DM

The Grand Opening of the new Pacific University College of Optometry Beaverton, OR clinic is set for Thursday, October 06, 2011 2:30 PM-4:00 PM.

The 3D Eye Clinic will be a prominent part of this new clinic facility. The President of Pacific University, the Beaverton Mayor, the Chairperson of [email protected], President of the American Optometric Association, and sponsor representatives among others will be there to help us celebrate.

Journal of Clinical Bioinformatics

The following new journals from BioMed Central have been added to PubMed Central:
    Journal of Clinical Bioinformatics
    ISSN: 2043-9113 (electronic)
    Archive includes 1(2011) to the present
    Note: There is no embargo delay for this journal

Epigenetic 'Memory' Key To Nature Versus Nurture

Researchers... have made a discovery, reported in Nature, that explains how an organism can create a biological memory of some variable condition, such as quality of nutrition or temperature. The discovery explains the mechanism of this memory - a sort of biological switch - and how it can also be inherited by offspring....

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Vision's Impact on Learning Conference

Port Arrowhead Resort, Osage Beach, MO.
Sept. 15 & 16, 2011

(This sounds like a great conference! Port Arrowhead Resort looks beautiful. The part I get to present is in bold face below. Click on the title above for registration information. Do it Today!! DM)
Pre-Conference - Thursday, Sept. 15, 2011 7:00 p.m. - 8:30 p.m. Cost $35.00

Sensory Integration Difficulties: What is it, what can be done.

Amy Vaughan, OTR/L, BCP - Amy is a licensed occupational therapist and the lead occupational therapist for the OT department with Burrell Behavioral Health. She is Board Certified in Pediatrics through the National Board of Certification in Occupational Therapy and she is also certified in sensory integration and praxis testing (SIPT). She has practiced as a pediatric therapist for over 13 years in a variety of settings including early childhood special education, school settings, and out-patient settings.

Dr. David Pierce, OD, COVD. Dr. Pierce is the Optometric Director for the Vision Intervention Program and has been instrumental in the establishment of the program. He has a particular interest in vision related learning problems associated with acquired attention disorders. Prior to merging his practice with the Vision Enhancement Clinic, Dr. Pierce was in private practice in Kansas City, MO. He was also a staff optometrist at Children's Mercy Hospital in Kansas City. He is a member of the College of Optometrists in Vision Development, Low vision Section of the American Optometric Association and Clinical Associate of the Optometric Extension Program Foundation.

Conference- Friday, Sept. 16, 2011 9:00 a.m.- 4:00 p.m.Cost $99.00

Breakout Session (Partial Listing)

Session A: Diagnosing and Treating Learning Related Vision Problems:
This lecture presents the latest information on diagnosing and treating binocular vision dysfunction that can interfere with learning. Vision problems such as convergence insufficiency are reviewed and treatment techniques (vision therapy) including the latest computer applications are discussed.

Session B: The Child with Special Needs: Diagnosis and Treatment.
Children with special needs actually need the same visual abilities as anyone else to succeed. These visual abilities include single, clear, binocular and pathology free vision. The latest research and clinical information is reviewed as well as a discussion of what an optometrist does while examining these individuals.

Session A and B will be conducted by Dominick Maino, OD, MEd, FAAO, FCOVD-A. He is a Professor of Pediatrics/Binocular Vision at the Illinois Eye Institute/Illinois College of Optometry and is in private practice in Harwood Heights, Il. Dr. Maino is also a Fellow of both the American Academy of Optometry and the College of Optometrists in Vision Development and an Associate of the Optometric Program Education Foundation. He is the editor of Optometry & Vision Development and has authored more than 200 books, chapters, and articles. His latest book is to be published by Lippincott and is tentatively titled: The Patient with Special Needs: Diagnosis and Management (Taub, Bartuccio, Maino editors). Dr. Maino has given more than 100 presentations worldwide and is a co-author of the ASCOTech column for Optometric Education and is currently the associate, consulting, and/or contributing editor/manuscript reviewer for numerous publications. He also is the American Optometric Association’s spokesperson on 3D Vision Syndrome and is a member of the AOA’s 3D Classroom project team. You can view some of his work on SlideShare (including this presentation) and YouTube.

Session C: Primitive Reflexes and their Effect on Development

Primitive Reflexes are building blocks of learning. They are involuntary movements that aid in survival during the first months of life. But if not properly integrated into voluntary movements as the developing infant interacts with the environment, faulty and adaptive motor patterns can be established, acting as roadblocks to efficient learning and accurate sensory processing. Symptoms of retained reflexes include a diverse range of characteristics including excessive anxiety, poor organizational skills, poor motor skills, and visual and auditory problems, to mention only a few.
This session will offer a working definition of a few select primitive reflexes that have a direct connection to vision, learning and behavior difficulties found in many school-age children. Participants will view examples of retained reflexes and will learn exercises that help integrate them. A simple program for application in the classroom will be offered.

Teresa Pearce worked as a speech-language pathologist in public schools for 26 years and has worked as a vision therapist for Dr. Susan Lake in Warrensburg, MO for the past 6 years. For the past three years, a program of exercises to integrate retained primitive reflexes has become a major component of therapy.

Angela Shumer has worked as a special education teacher in public schools for more than eleven years and now works as a vision therapist in Dr. Susan Lake’s office. She enjoys working with families and children with special needs and has authored "What does your tongue look like?" and "A million kisses to the moon."

Session C

Activities for the whole kindergarten class to improve their vision skills.

Joy Steffes is an innovative educator with more than 25 years of elementary experience. She has taught math, and reading, and is a V. I. p. vision tutor. She has developed many techniques for the whole class to improve their vision skills.

Jessica Vandegriffe has worked as a V. I. P. vision tutor and is currently a Regional Facilitator for the Vision Intervention Program.

Session D

Visual Perception Issues in Early childhood: A New Perspective on the Out of Sync Child!
Movement is a natural part of being a young child but in today’s world we seem to focus on teaching children mostly from the “neck up.” Without early opportunities to engage in a variety of visual motor activities, children begin school with inadequate perceptual abilities on which to build future academic learning.
Presentation will explore the role of the “Sensory Pyramid” in the learning process and discuss the “Key Three” visual perception skills all educators should know about. Participants will learn while playing a variety of visual motor games and leave with great ideas on how to build and support a strong visual perception foundation in young children.

Kim Sutton, MEd. Teacher at Ozark Technical College in Springfield, MO, Kim learned about the importance of vision while trying to help her son with pencil breaking, poor handwriting and other issues. She visited with Dr. David Pierce, conducted her own research and now presents at numerous conferences.

Sensory Processing: What is it, and how can it impact my classroom?

Sensory processing plays a vital role in receptive learning and motivation in the classroom. A child’s sensory processing skills impact his learning style, his response to teaching strategies, and his ability to develop cooperative learning skills. This session will focus on defining the role of sensory processing in the context of learning and will equip professionals with easy to use techniques that can be integrated into any classroom routine to help support learning and development for every child. Professionals will also learn to recognize symptoms of sensory processing dysfunction (SPD) and identify needed referrals and resources.

Amy Vaughan - See biographical information listed other side.

More sessions to be announced soon.

Who should attend? Educators, nurses, occupational, physical and vision therapist, paraprofessionals, doctors.

To register: Go to and click on the conference tab

Or mail your name, mailing address, e-mail address along with a purchase order or check to: Learning Insights, 1014 Northeast Drive, Jefferson City, MO 65109

Optic nerve abnormalities in children: A practical approach

....Evaluation of children with optic nerve abnormalities is challenging. Fundus photography, ocular coherence tomography, visual field testing, color vision evaluation, neuroimaging, and genetic testing are helpful in the diagnosis and management of these patients. Importantly, many optic nerve problems are not isolated but occur in association with systemic and central nervous system anomalies......

Autism Spectrum Disorders: Interventions through the Life Span,

FYI: Upcoming Special Issue on "Autism Spectrum Disorders: Interventions through the Life Span," which will be published in Autism Research and Treatment in May 2012.

Call for Papers for this Special Issue at

Deadline for submission is November 1st, 2011. The Special Issue is open to both original research articles as well as review articles.

Author Guidelines at for more information on the journal's policies and the submission process.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

The Presbyopia Song: Can't See at Near? Here's why....

Vaccinated Children Vs. Unvaccinated Children -- What Are The Risks?

Alison M. Buttenheim, PhD, MBA, assistant professor at Penn Nursing answers parents' questions about childhood vaccines. Dr. Buttenheim is a public health researcher and social demographer who studies parent behavior and child health.....

Babies Born To Stressed Pregnant Mothers More Likely To Be Prone To Stress Themselves

Babies whose mothers were very stressed while they were pregnant are more likely to be susceptible to stress themselves, German researchers reported in the journal Translational Psychiatry. This vulnerability to stress is caused by genetic changes that occur in the fetus because of the mother's stress.....

Health officials urge vaccination to quell pertussis, measles outbreaks

....Pertussis and measles may be making a comeback in the US due to decreased immunization rates, according to speakers at the 16th Richard J. Duma/NFID Annual News Conference and Symposium on Infectious Diseases..... “It is imperative that we move toward more understanding of vaccine benefits, and that we incorporate other means to get that message out, including health specialists, cultural anthropologists, others; all must now be included in developing vaccine education efforts,” Gregory Poland, MD, said during the press conference,...Poland, who works with the Jenner Society, took aim at the antivaccine movement during the symposium and said the primary cause for falling vaccine coverage rates are “mistrust and ignorance among the public about vaccines. This is the direct negative effect of the antivaccine movement.”.....

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Adventures in Optometry

Finding It Harder To See The Wood For The Trees: Changes In Attention And Visual Perception Are Correlated With Aging

....When looking at a picture of many trees, young people will tend to say: "This is a forest". However, the older we get, the more likely we are to notice a single tree before seeing the forest. This suggests that the speed at which the brain processes the bigger picture is slower in older people....

Comments: ...or it could mean that those of us who are chronologically enhance are better at picking out details!! DM

Tech Toys that Keep Kids Thinking

Check out what Techicilious says about these toys for kids!

Wild Planet Speed Slider

Animap Interactive Talking Map

VTech Brillant Creations Advanced Notebook

Laser Pegs World of Bugs

LeapFrog Tag Reading System

...and more! click on the title above. DM





Monday, August 1, 2011

Optometrist: The Hero of Vision

New Clinical Trial To Examine Medication To Treat Social Withdrawal In Fragile X And Autism Patients

.....Children and adults with social withdrawal due to Fragile X syndrome, the most common cause of inherited intellectual disability and the most common known single gene cause of autism, may benefit from an experimental drug under study by pediatric neurologists at Rush Children's Hospital at Rush University Medical Center....."The condition can be severely debilitating and this medication has the potential to play a much needed role in improving the core symptoms of fragile X syndrome and helping patients and their families achieve an improved quality of life," said Dr. Elizabeth Berry-Kravis, pediatric neurologist at Rush and principal investigator of the study.....

Comments: Dr. Berry-Kravis and I have worked on several projects together...and she is not only an outstanding researcher, but a great pediatric neurologist! Watch her and her colleagues for the latest info on Fragile X Syndrome.


Sometime in 2011-12 watch for Lippincot to publish 
Taub M, Bartuccio M, Maino D. (Eds) The Patient with Special Needs: Diagnosis and Management, Lippincott Williams & Wilkins (in press 2011-12) this chapter on Fragile X Sybdrome... Berrry-Kravis E, Maino D. Fragile X Syndrome

Berry-Kravis E, Krause SE, Block SS, Guter S. Wuu J, Leurgans S, Decle P, Potanos E, Cook E, Salt J, Maino D, et al Effect of the AMPAKINE® COMPOUND CX516 on cognition and behavior in Fragile X syndrome. J Child Adolesc Psychopharmacol 2006; (5): 525-540

Block SS, Brusca-Vega R, Pizzi WJ, Berry-Kravis E, Maino DM, Treitman T. Cognitive and visual processing skills and their relationship to mutation size in full and permutation female fragile x carriers.. Optom Vis Sci 2000;77 (11):592-599.

Krause SE, Berry-Kravis E, Leurgans S, Wuu J,  Guter SJ, Block SS, Salt J, Cook E, Maino DM. Reliability Measures in Assessment of Adults with Fragile X Syndrome. Poster  the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association annual Meeting, Boston, MA 11/07

Krause SE, Berry-Kravis E, Wuu J, Leurgans S, Guter SJ, Jr., Block S, Salt J, Cook E, Maino D. Vocabulary Comprehension in Fragile X Syndrome: Comparative Analyses. Poster presented Speech-Language-Hearing Association Annual Meeting. Miami, FL 11/06.

The Relationship between Mutation Size and Cognitive and Visual Processing Skills in Female Fragile X Carriers. W. Pizzi 1, S. Block 2, R. Brusca-Vega 1`, E. Berry-Kravis 3, D. Maino 2. Northeastern IL. Univ.1, Illinois Coll. Optometry 2, Rush Medical Coll. 3. Chicago, IL. The Fragile X Research Group. Society for NeuroScience. Washington, DC 1996 (Presented by Dr. Pizzi)

Cognitive and Visual Processing Skills and Their Relationship to Mutation Size in Full and Premutation Female Fragile X Carriers

This paper by myself and colleagues (Block, Sandra S. OD, MEd, FAAO; Brusca-Vega, Rita EdD; Pizzi, William J. PhD; Berry-Kravis, Elizabeth MD, PhD; Maino, Dominick M. OD, MEd, FAAO; Treitman, Theresa M.) is now available free. Read the full text by clicking the title above. DM

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Effect of accommodation training by stereoscopic movie presentation on myopic youth

...The researchers concluded that.... (a) The accommodation training using a stereoscopic movie had temporarily improved visual acuity. (b) This training led to a decrease in asthenopia. (c) The training improved the near-point accommodation function.....