Tuesday, May 24, 2011

AMD Injection Results Similar

Age Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) is a leading cause of vision loss among senior citizens in the United States. “About 80-85% of AMD is of a type called “Dry Macular Degeneration” which causes a slowly progressive dimming of vision”, said Leslie Doctor, M.D. “Some cases progress to or actually commence as a more serious type of Macular Degeneration called “Wet Macular Degeneration” which is often catastrophic for patients”.

Fortunately today there are treatments for Wet AMD called VEGF Injections that provide those with Wet Macular Degeneration an effective therapeutic course if detected early enough. Lucentis is a type of VEGF Injection that had received specific FDA approval for the treatment of Wet Macular Degeneration. While Lucentis has worked very well for a great number of patients it costs some $2,000 per injection. A similar VEGF Injection called Avastin that is produced by the same manufacturer as Lucentis and is FDA approved for cancer treatments has been used “off label’ to treat Wet Macular Degeneration by many ophthalmologists-and at a cost of approximately $50 per injection. The question asked by Medicare and insurance companies is whether the two injections have similar safety and efficacy.

Researchers reporting in the May edition of the New England Journal of Medicine indicated that there was “virtually no difference” in the efficacy of Lucentis as compared to Avastin in the treatment of Wet Macular Degeneration. What is unclear is whether Avastin has a greater number of systemic side effects such as heart attack and stroke as the study size was not sufficient to determine the risk. However, another study using the Medicare database is expected to possibly address these safety concerns through detailed analysis but not through a randomized clinical trial.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Intraocular Lens Implant (IOL) Information

Intraocular Lens Implants, Intraocular Lenses, Lens Implants or IOLs are tiny plastic artificial lenses that are used to replace eye’s natural crystalline lenses that have become clouded with cataracts or to treat the common age related problem of presbyopia. Presbyopia is a condition in which the crystalline lens becomes less flexible, thus losing its ability to focus on arm’s and near objects. Today there are several types of lens implants that can be used to correct vision when a cataract has been removed. Here is what you should know:

Monofocal Lens Implants vs. Multifocal Lens Implants
The traditional type of lens implant is called a Monofocal Lens Implant because it offers patients improvement in vision at one set distance distance-usually for seeing far away. More that 75% of patients who have Monofocal Lens Implants require reading glasses, bifocals or trifocals in order to see up close or at arm’s length after Cataract Surgery. Dr. Leslie Doctor offers patients at Doctor & Associates the opportunity to have Multifocal Lens Implants. This advanced lens implant technology allows her to replace the eye’s natural lens with a new artificial lens that can help restore visual clarity to near, intermediate and distance vision with a reduced need for or even complete independence from eyeglasses.

Astigmatism Correcting Toric Lens Implants
If you have astigmatism before cataract surgery, you may still experience blurred and distorted vision after traditional cataract surgery because a traditional lens implant cannot correct astigmatism. If you have astigmatism before cataract surgery you may still require glasses, contact lens or further surgery to get clear vision. If freedom from glasses for distance vision is important to you, you now have a better option. Dr. Leslie Doctor implants astigmatism correcting lens implants where the unique lens design makes it possible to reduce or eliminate astigmatism and significantly improve your uncorrected distance vision so that you may reduce the need for corrective lenses compared to a traditional IOL.

Aspheric Lens Implants
Most eyes have optical distortions-called aberrations-that cause a number of vision problems for patients. One type of aberration commonly that is particularly troubling to patients is called spherical aberration. Spherical aberration can lead to a reduction in vision acuity and function. Spherical aberration is generally associated with:
  • Blurriness
  • Halos
  • Loss of contrast
  • Poor night vision
If you have spherical aberration and are having Cataract Surgery, Dr. Leslie Doctor can implant a lens designed to reduce spherical aberration so that you experience an increase in contrast sensitivity that will help you see in dim illumination, foggy and rainy conditions and at dusk. Patients who have aspheric lens implants typically appreciate enhanced clarity and improved image quality.

Please feel free to contact Doctor & Associates to schedule an appointment and learn more about Cataracts, Cataract Surgery or Lens Implants by calling us at 203-227-4113.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

LASIK Candidates-What Makes Good Ones?

The desire or the need to be free of the hassle of eyeglasses or contact lenses for seeing at distance motivates millions of people-just like you-to consider LASIK. But before you proceed it is important to find out if you are a good candidate. LASIK is not for everyone. Here are some things to think about to help you determine if you might be a good candidate for LASIK.
Ø  The great majority of patients who are nearsighted, farsighted or have astigmatism are potential candidates for LASIK.
Ø  Good LASIK candidates are at least 18 years of age or older and have stable vision. This means that their eyeglass or contact lens prescription has not changed much in the last year or so. Many people do not have "stable" vision until 21 years of age however, so each person is a bit different.
Ø  Good LASIK candidates have healthy eyes that are free from retinal problems, corneal scars, and any other eye diseases. They have normal corneal shapes and thickness as well as healthy tears.
Ø  The best LASIK candidates are those with a lifestyle, activities or occupation in which they are dissatisfied with their contact lenses or glasses.
To really explore and find out if you are a good LASIK candidate it is necessary to have a LASIK evaluation, examination and consultation. You can schedule an appointment with Corneal Specialist & LASIK Surgeon Leslie Doctor, M.D. by calling Doctor & Associates at 203-227-4113.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Ultraviolet (UV) Eye Protection Awareness Month

Doctor & Associates wishes to announce that Prevent Blindness America has designated May as National Ultraviolet Eye Awareness Month. “Most people know the harmful effects that ultraviolet (UV) rays can have on the skin. But many are not aware of the damage that they can cause to the eyes. Possibly the most frightening aspect of UV damage is that it is cumulative, meaning the negative effects may not present themselves until years later”, commented Leslie Doctor, M.D. of Doctor & Associates on Fairfield County, Connecticut.

Today almost everyone is aware of the potential damage that sunlight and ultraviolet (UV) radiation can cause to their skin, most do not know or appreciate that ultraviolet light (UV) can also cause significant damage to eye health and vision.
“Most of us wouldn’t dream of staying outside in the sun without putting on sunscreen lotion,” said Dr. Leslie Doctor. “But we also need to remember to wear both UV-blocking sunglass lenses and eyewear and a brimmed hat to protect our eyes as well.”
Patients today are quite fortunate to have a wide range of UV protecting eyeglass lenses available to choose from. “High quality sunglasses should block out 99-100 percent of both UV-A and UV-B radiation and even your everyday eyewear should have UV protection through the incorporation UV blocking eyeglass lens materials, specialized coatings and photochromic lenses”, relayed Dr. Doctor.

“We know that extended exposure to UV has been linked to many eye problems and in some cases thought to quicken the onset of eye diseases such as cataract, age related macular degeneration (AMD), certain cancers on the delicate skin around the eye, and even photokeratitis, a type of sunburn of the cornea”, said Corneal Specialist Leslie Doctor, M.D.
When you visit Doctor & Associates, please feel free to ask any questions you might have about UV protection, eye disease and the best way to protect your eyes with the proper eyewear and lens choices. Please feel free to schedule an appointment Willows Opticians at Doctor & Associates to learn more about UV protection and eyewear by phoning 203-227-4113.