Simple Tips Patients can Practice to Maintain Eye Health

Posted on Apr 27, 2013 by

We’ve all most likely had a dentist ask us at one time or another if we’ve been flossing enough. While the importance of flossing can be easily overlooked or underestimated, it’s an essential part of the equation for good dental health.


Similarly, a comprehensive eye exam is an important part of the equation for maintaining eye health. But there are several steps patients must take on their own – similar to flossing – in order to keep their eyes in optimal health after they’ve left the doctor’s office. Below are a few simple tips you can encourage your patients to practice on their own to maintain healthy eyes and vision.


Eat for Better Vision – Remind patients of the fruits and vegetables that are rich in the vitamins and minerals that they can add to their diet to support eye health. Lutein, zeaxanthin, vitamin E, and omega-3 fatty acids are helpful for patients with cataracts, AMD, and dry eye syndrome, respectively.


Watch Your Weight – Patients that maintain a healthy weight are less likely to develop conditions like type-2 diabetes, which is a leading cause of blindness in adults as it increases the risk of glaucoma and cataracts. So …


Visual Impairment & Blindness a Prevalent Issue in Europe

Posted on Apr 25, 2013 by

While most people differentiate the eastern European region by political, socioeconomic, and geographical aspects, optometrists differentiate the highly industrialized countries of Europe by the leading causes of vision loss in children and adults.


According to the British Journal of Ophthalmology, the leading causes of childhood vision loss in the eastern European region are “lesions of the central nervous system, congenital anomalies and retinal disorders.” The leading causes among adults in these countries, however, are age-related macular degeneration, cataract, glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy, and uncorrected or uncorrectable refractive errors and low vision in general. Working age individuals are commonly diagnosed with similar conditions, as well as optic atrophy. In middle income countries, the leading causes of vision loss are reported to be congenital cataract, advanced cataract, glaucoma, retinopathy of prematurity and diabetic retinopathy.


The article further notes that as many of these causes of partial and/or total vision loss are preventable, European countries will have to increase their public health efforts to be able to effectively combat vision loss. The five eye health issues that healthcare professionals need to focus on were identified as cataract, diabetic retinopathy, glaucoma, retinopathy of prematurity and low vision and refraction. However, most of these …


What Patients Dread Most about Doctor Visits

Posted on Apr 23, 2013 by

Do any of your patients seem flustered when entering the exam room? If so, it might be because they are experiencing one or more of the common causes of dissatisfaction as identified by a Consumer Reports survey and a report featured on ABC News.


The Consumer Reports survey was cited to reveal the following as the things patients dislike most about visiting the doctor:


24% of patients surveyed said the amount of time spent in the waiting was most annoying, with almost one in four patients revealing that they waited no less than 30 minutes; ABC News shared that patients often feel the doctors think their time is more valuable than the patients’. 19% said they couldn’t schedule an appointment within a week. 9% felt that their doctors didn’t spend enough time with them. In relation to this, ABC News reported that many patients feel their doctors aren’t really listening to them in the time they do spend with their patients. 7% responded that test results were not provided in a timely manner. And 6% of the respondents felt phone calls were not responded to promptly.

While it may not be easy to hear some of this not-so-positive feedback, it …


Ideas for Improving Your Practice’s Waiting Room

Posted on Apr 18, 2013 by

First impressions are extremely important when it comes to a patient’s experience at a doctor’s office, and that experience begins in the waiting room. Some patients may feel a bit anxious about their appointment, and the time they spend in the waiting room can have an effect on whether or not their nerves are eased. Still others see the wait as an annoyance.


Taking some time to consider how your waiting room currently affects the patient experience can reveal ways to improve the space, and in turn make the patient’s visit more positive. A Spanish design consultancy, Fuelfor, conducted a case study called “Rethink the waiting room,” which pointed out six ways a waiting room can be improved for a better patient experience. Here are some of the ideas we found most impactful.


Greet patients with signs that offer a warm welcome. Fuelfor recommends injecting your signage with personality by introducing the doctors in the office that day with their name and photo, and other information like suggestions of activities that cater to a healthy lifestyle.


Create a comfortable environment by providing patients with thoughtfully-chosen seating. Also, consider decorating with planters and adding acoustic separators for patient privacy. …


Supporting Healthy Vision for All – The Himalayan Cataract Project

Posted on Apr 16, 2013 by

We believe that everyone should have access to doctors and eye exams in order to maintain healthy vision and prevent blindness. Sadly, there are many locations around the world where vision disorders and blindness are a huge problem among the population and the ability to receive proper treatment is not always an option.


As part of our commitment to help create and maintain strong, healthy communities, Optos is proud to support organizations that provide medical assistance to some of the most under-served populations around the world. One such organization is the Himalayan Cataract Project (HCP).


The HCP was founded in 1995 by Drs. Sanduk Ruit and Geoff Tabin, a pair of ophthalmologists that shared an ambition to eliminate as much unnecessary blindness as they could during their lifetimes. The organization is rooted in the Tilganga Eye Centre in Kathmandu, Nepal – the first outpatient cataract surgery facility of its kind in the Himalayan region. The Himalayan region, as Dr. Tabin says, is an area where blindness has long been viewed as a death sentence: “People long thought that as you grow old, your hair turns white, your eyes turn white and you die.”


Drs. Tabin and Ruit …


Can Certain Foods Help Save Vision?

Posted on Apr 12, 2013 by

We’re all familiar with the saying “An apple a day keeps the doctor away” and how a balanced diet is essential for one’s health. But can certain foods actually help save the vision of your patients?


The Age-Related Eye Disease Study (AREDS) conducted over a decade ago revealed that there are nutritional supplements that can minimize the risk of AMD. The AREDS2 preliminary findings also reveal that lifestyle adjustments and nutritional supplements can help reduce one’s risk for AMD.


As Robert Able Jr., MD, shared with Ophthalmology Management, most treatments for age-related eye diseases can be quite expensive, but these procedures can be prevented if ocular nutrition is taken seriously and patients start adding the right foods and supplements to their diet.


So which foods and supplements might be able to help save the vision of your patients dealing with age-related eye problems? Below are a few recommendations.


Fish, spinach, kale, turnip greens, corn, squash, and pumpkins that are rich in lutein and zeaxanthin are helpful for patients who have cataracts, category 3 or 4 AMD, or a family history of AMD. Lutein and zeaxanthin help decrease the risk of damage to the inner eye caused …