Monday, October 13, 2014

Halloween Contact Lenses Require Caution

Eyecare Medical Group wishes to advise patient to use caution when considering non prescription decorative contact lenses for cosmetic use as part of their Halloween costumes. Patients need to remember that the Food and Drug Administration,  considers all contact lenses regulated medical devices that require a prescription and proper fitting by an eye care professional. Even someone with perfect vision would still require an eye exam and a prescription in order to wear any kind of contacts, including cosmetic decorative non prescription contact lenses. Some websites advertise decorative contacts as if they were fashion accessories or toys with fanciful, playful packaging in order to attract teens and young adults, especially girls. The problem is not that people use decorative but that they buy the devices without a prescription through unlicensed vendors on the Internet or at flea markets and specialty shops. This exposes them to a significant risk of eye problems including scratched corneas or corneal abrasion, “pink eye” conjunctivitis and even corneal infections such as keratitis that can lead to corneal ulcers and vision loss. The safe and effective use of contact lenses-whether cosmetic decorative or not-requires proper fitting and education about their care to prevent the potential for serious eye  problems from becoming a reality.


If you or a friend would like to learn more about contact lenses of any type including cosmetic decorative non prescription contacts please call Eyecare Medical Group, 53 Sewall Street, Portland, Maine 04102 at 888-374-2020, visit Eyecare Medical Group or facebook.com/eyecaremedicalgroup to schedule an appointment.


Monday, September 29, 2014

Glaucoma Patients Benefit from iPad, Kindle & Nook e-Readers

Adults with glaucoma read slower when reading silently for long periods of time and are more likely to have their reading speed decrease over time, possibly as a result of reading fatigue caused by blind spots, reduced contrast sensitivity and visual field dimensions from the  damage done by their glaucoma. According to a study published in Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science patients with glaucoma may benefit from using e-readers such as the iPad, Nook and Kindle devices as they offer enhanced contrast adjustment and font size. These technological solutions along with the apps that are developed for them may very well help glaucoma patients read more comfortably.

If you or someone you know has questions about e-readers such as the iPad, Nook and Kindle ti help glaucoma patients read more comfortably,  please feel free to call Eyecare Medical Group, 53 Sewall Street, Portland, Maine 04102 at 888-374-2020, visit Eyecare Medical Group or facebook.com/eyecaremedicalgroup to schedule an appointment.


Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Understanding BOTOX® Might Help Treat Type 2 Diabetes

Understanding the mechanism of action of BOTOX® might be helpful in the diagnosis and treatment of Type 2 Diabetes. What do BOTOX® and Type 2 Diabetes have to do with each other you ask?

BOTOX® Cosmetic is best known as an injection for helping patient smooth fine lines and wrinkles in order to look their best. BOTOX® is also used as treatment for a number of medical conditions including migraine, urinary incontinence, profuse sweating and crossed eyes, among others. In each of these cases, BOTOX® works because it has a paralyzing effect: that is, it relaxes specific muscles, which then provides the desired effect. BOTOX® accomplishes this effect by blocking certain proteins called SNARE (Soluble NSF Attachment Protein Receptor) proteins. It turns out that SNARE proteins in the beta cells of the pancreas help the pancreas secrete insulin, thus blocking these proteins in the pancreas could lead to insulin resistance which is the hallmark of Type 2 Diabetes. Understanding this mechanism will hopefully provide researchers with new ways to diagnose and treat Type 2 Diabetes in the future.

If you or someone you know has questions about how understanding of BOTOX® mechanism of action might help in the diagnosis and treatment of Type 2 Diabetes, please feel free to call Eyecare Medical Group, 53 Sewall Street, Portland, Maine 04102 at 888-374-2020, visit Eyecare Medical Group or facebook.com/eyecaremedicalgroup to schedule an appointment.


Friday, September 12, 2014

Diabetic Retinopathy Predicts Future Cardiovascular Events


The presence and severity of diabetic retinopathy may predict future cardiovascular (CV) events such as heart attack or stroke. The relationship between diabetic retinopathy, its 4-year progression, and CV outcomes including CV death or nonfatal myocardial infarction or stroke was analyzed in participants in the Action to Control Cardiovascular Risk in Diabetes (ACCORD) Trial who also participated in the ACCORD Eye Study. The diabetic retinopathy was classified as either none, mild, moderate, or severe and whether it was worsening was also graded. The hazard of CV death or nonfatal myocardial infarction or stroke increased by 38% for every category of change in retinopathy severity and steps of progression further raised the hazard. Thus the researchers believe that both the severity of retinopathy and its progression are determinants of predisposition to CV outcomes. The retina may provide an anatomical index of the effect of metabolic and hemodynamic factors on future CV outcomes. 

If you or someone you know has questions about diabetic retinopathy and your risk of cardiovascular events, please feel free to call Eyecare Medical Group, 53 Sewall Street, Portland, Maine 04102 at 888-374-2020, visit Eyecare Medical Group or facebook.com/eyecaremedicalgroup to schedule an appointment.


Friday, September 5, 2014

Do Vitamins & Antioxidants Decrease Cataract Risk?

While not definitive, it may be possible that there is an association between your risk of cataracts and your intake of certain vitamins and antioxidants according to researchers reporting their results in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. Until now, studies have been inconsistent regarding the association between blood antioxidants or vitamins and risk of age-related cataract. By performing a meta analysis of 13 different studies researchers found the  lower the  level of vitamin E, α-carotene, lutein and zeaxanthin, the  greater the  risk of age-related cataract in Asian populations but not in Western populations, whereas β-Carotene, lycopene, and β-cryptoxanthin  had no significant association with risk of cataract. While these results look somewhat interesting, the question remains whether increasing intake through dietary supplements actually have any role in decreasing the risk of cataract formation.

If you or someone you know has questions about vitamins, antioxidants and your risk of cataracts, please feel free to call Eyecare Medical Group, 53 Sewall Street, Portland, Maine 04102 at 888-374-2020, visit Eyecare Medical Group or facebook.com/eyecaremedicalgroup to schedule an appointment.


Thursday, August 28, 2014

Laser Treatment for Pinguecula

Laser treatment for Pinguecula may be an option where other types of treatment have not been satisfactory according to researchers reporting in the journal Cornea. A Pinguecula is a common, non-cancerous growth of the clear, thin tissue covering the eye called the conjunctiva. The growth is raised slightly from the surface of the white part of the eye called sclera. While the exact cause is unknown long-term sunlight exposure and eye irritation may be factors. Welding is a major job-related risk. Usually no treatment is needed however keeping the eye moist with artificial tears may help prevent the area from becoming inflamed. Sometimes the temporary use of mild steroid eye drops can also be helpful. Occasionally the growth may need to be removed for comfort or for cosmetic reasons especially if it grows over the cornea and impairs vision. When this happens, the growth is called a pterygium.

Researchers in the study treated Pinguecula with argon laser photocoagulation. The patients and eye surgeons graded the cosmetic outcome on a 5 point-grading scale with 5 being excellent, 4 being good, 3 acceptable, 2 poor and 1 very poor. The overall cosmetic results were excellent or good in 90.5% of laser-treated cases and the laser treated cases had minimal scarring or hemorrhage. They concluded that argon laser photocoagulation is an effective and safe method for removing a Pinguecula for cosmetic purposes and the laser method facilitates control of the extent and depth of removal and thus minimizes conjunctival defects and other complications.

If you or someone you know has a question about laser treatment for Pinguecula please feel free to call Eyecare Medical Group, 53 Sewall Street, Portland, Maine 04102 at 888-374-2020, visit Eyecare Medical Group or facebook.com/eyecaremedicalgroup to schedule an appointment.


Thursday, August 7, 2014

Seniors Need Greater Awareness of Cataract Symptoms

Eyecare Medical Group wishes to alert seniors and others at risk for cataracts about the need for greater awareness of cataract symptoms as poor vision in seniors is often associated with premature or accelerated mental decline and reduced vision can create real challenges in terms of mobility and safety, with patients being at increased risk for orthopedic injury-especially hip fracture. So, helping seniors become more familiar with the symptoms of cataracts and restore vision with cataract surgery has an important place in securing senior health and well being.

A cataract is a clouding of the crystalline lens of the eye preventing light rays from passing through it easily. This results in a clouding and blurring of vision. Cataracts start out slowly and have little effect on vision at first but as the cataract becomes denser, so does effect on vision. The most common symptoms that bother patients with cataracts can include blurring or clouding of vision, sensitivity to light and glare, double vision in one eye, poor night vision, fading or yellowing of colors and frequent changes in glasses or contact lens prescriptions.


If and when cataracts begin to interfere with daily activities or with patient comfort, mobility and safety, they can be treated surgically. Cataract surgery is one of the safest and most frequently performed surgeries in the United States. Today, we have a full range of lens implants available that allow us to correct nearsightedness, farsightedness, astigmatism and even near vision problems after cataract surgery, as well as distance vision, without requiring bifocals or reading glasses for the vast majority of patients.

If you or someone you know has questions about cataract, cataract surgery or lens implants please feel free to call Eyecare Medical Group, 53 Sewall Street, Portland, Maine 04102 at 888-374-2020, visit Eyecare Medical Group or facebook.com/eyecaremedicalgroup to schedule an appointment.