Monday, September 30, 2013

Kids' eyeglass frames - the top three features to look for

Did you know? Only 10% of all eyeglass frames are made for children.

There are a number of child friendly features to look for in children's frames.  Here are the top three.  Read more...

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Which children benefit most from orthokeratology myopia treatment?

Myopia treatment in Vancouver, BC.
Orthokeratology is effective in slowing or stopping myopia in children. A new study helps doctors determiner which patients will benefit the most from orthokeratology treatment.

A new study published in the journal Optometry & Vision Science sought to determine which children would benefit the most from the orthokeratology to slow or stop their myopia progression.

Here is our definition of orthokeratology:

Orthokeratology is a vision correction treatment that reshapes your cornea while you sleep so that you have perfect vision during the day. No glasses, no contacts, no surgery. Orthokeratology is also sometimes caled "corneal reshaping", "corneal molding", "overnight vision correction" or "ortho-K". Orthokeratology is most effective for near sightedness and astigmatism. Lens designs for farsightedness are under development. - See more at:

There are many studies that support orthokeratology to slow or stop the progression of myopia. This study wanted to find out which children would benefit the most from ortho-k.

Orthokeratology (OrthoK) in Vancouver BCThe researchers evaluated baseline measurements in myopic children fitted with overnight orthokeratology retainer lenses and compared these to measurements in a  group who wore glasses.  The authors then analyzed their data to figure out which measurements predicted myopia progression.  The standard measurement of myopia progression is to measure the axial length of the eye.  In myopia, the eye grows longer and if this effect is slowed or halted altogether, a child's eyes will stop getting worse.

The study identified number of factors that can help eye doctors predict which myopic children might benefit from overnight orthokeratology retainer lenses to control axial length growth and hence myopia progression.

The study found that the children who experienced the greatest myopia slowing effect were those who were older, had earlier onset of myopia, were female, had lower rate of myopia progression before baseline, had less myopia at baseline, had longer anterior chamber depth, had greater corneal power, had more prolate corneal shape, had larger iris diameter, had larger pupil sizes, and had lower levels of parental myopia.

The study also highlights the need to see a doctor who is highly trained in ortokeratology. A great deal of knowledge is required to ensure that the right patients are selected and that orthokeratology is not prescribed indiscriminately.

Related articles

Orthokeratology slows or stops the progression of myopia in children
July 6, 2013

Study suggests that young children may benefit from orthokeratology
February 14, 2013

New study confirms orthokeratology for slowing myopia progression
January 30, 2013

Orthokeratology is shown to be safe for correcting myopia in chidlren
Aug 11, 2012

Orthokeratology is shown to be effective in correcting astigmatism and myopia
Jun 18, 2012

New study supports orthokeratology for myopia control and for astigmatism correction
Jan 10, 2012

Laser eye sugery makes you queasy? Orthokeratology is a safe and effective alternative
Jun 09, 2011

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Why Apple's iphone 5s and iOS7 make people dizzy, motion-sick and nauseous - you may have Neuro-Ocular-Vestibular Dysfunction

Motion sickness, dizziness, vestibular treatment in Vancouver, BC
Many Apple iPhone users are complaining that the new iOS7 operating system makes them dizzy, sick and nauseous.  In one article from ABC News, users are reported as experiencing the following symptoms:

One user says "It hurts my eyes and makes me dizzy. So annoying that we can't downgrade!!!!" Another writes, "I had severe vertigo the minute I started using my ipad with ios 7. Lost the rest of the day to it... And not happy at all. It's the transition between the apps flying in and out."
People are experiencing a form of motion sickness caused by the transition animations in iOS7. They may have unwittingly diagnosed themselves with a vision or eye movement problem.  

We treat many patients for a problem called Neuro-Ocular-Vestibular Dysfunction (also known as "see-sick syndrome" or "supermarket syndrome") where they experience motion sickness like symptoms arising from dynamic visual stimuli, even when they are not in a vehicle.  The visual stimulus of a super-market, stripes on a shirt and now perhaps even the iPhones iOS7 operating system can trigger motion sickness type symptoms. 

The problems often arises from binocular vision disorders - eye movement problems where the eyes do not work together as a team properly. Studies have shown thatvertigo and dizziness is an underestimated symptom of eye and vision disorders.

The fact that vision and eyes are an under-recognized cause of dizziness, vertigo and motion sickness means that many people spend a year or more seeking help from various doctors who fail to diagnose the problem before finding an eye doctor who can zero in on the cause. One recent case found us one when she went to her optometrist after consulting various doctors for over a year. The optometrist found that the patient's eyes were misaligned, a condition that commonly causes the dizziness and vertigo-like symptoms she was experiencing. The patient was referred to our Vancouver eye clinic for treatment.

Dynamic adaptive vision therapy is an effective treatment for see-sick syndrome. Vision therapy relies on the principle of neuroplacticity and involves a doctor and therapist treating the patient with exercises and special equipment to "re-wire" the eye-brain connection and improve visual skills. In this way, vision therapy is similar to speech therapy or occupational therapy but focused, of course, on the eyes and visual system.

Related Articles

See sick syndrome
Jul 29, 2013
See Sick Syndrome, also known as Neuro-Ocular-Vestibular Dysfunction (NOVD), is a combination of motion sickness and photophobia that negatively affects quality of life, but is almost always unrecognized by medical ...

Motion sickness and vision therapy - See for Life
Apr 18, 2012
MSNBC recently did a story on adult onset motion sickness. One of the doctors interviewed for the article was optometrist, Dan L. Fortenbacher, O.D., FCOVD, who treats motion sickness using vision therapy. Here is an ...

Vertigo is often a symptom of eye disorders - See for Life
Apr 20, 2013
As we see more and more patients in our Vancouver optometry clinic with vertigo caused by eye disorders, we are reminded of an important study that was published on the topic over a decade ago by researchers from France ...

More articles on iOS 7 and motion sickness

New iOS 7 update making some users dizzy
Detroit Free Press
Apple customers have taken to Apple message boards and Twitter to complain that the flashy graphics in the new operating system for the ...

Apple iOS 7 Literally Making Some Users Sick
ABC News‎

Make iOS 7 less nausea-inducing
  1. Macworld (blog)

Monday, September 23, 2013

Can pet hair harm your eyes?

Eye health tip. If you have a pet, keep their hair off areas where you lie your head down.
If you love to cuddle your pet just be sure to keep the pillows on your couches and your bed clear of pet hair. Along with shedding dander, pets can also track in other irritants from outside that can cause inflammation in human eyes.

Which treatments are better than patching for amblyopia?

Patching is often the worst treatment for amblyopia for a number of reasons, including loss of self-esteem and exposure to bullying.  There are more effective and pleasant treatments available.  Read more...

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Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Eye tracking problems and reading - pursuits and saccades

Some students have reading problems because their eyes cannot properly track the words on the page.

There are two types of basic movements that eyes make when reading.  The first type is called a pursuit.  Imagine a baseball field, imagine the pitcher throwing the ball to the batter.  As the batter's eye follows the ball, the eye is performing a pursuit.

The second type of eye movement that is critical to reading is a saccade.  In baseball, if you quickly look from fist base to second base to third base, that is a saccadic eye movement.  To read properly, your eyes must have very precise and accurate pursuit and saccadic eye movements.  People with problems with pursuits and saccades often miss words, loose their place when reading and have to re-read sentences.

Problems with pursuits and saccades can be effectively treated with vision therapy.

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Monday, September 16, 2013

Free prescription eye-glasses and free sunglasses

End of summer promotion: FREE prescription eyeglasses + FREE sunglasses.  Visit for more information.

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Listen to RJ 1200 radio at 2:00 p.m. to catch Dr. Randhawa

Catch Dr. Randhawa on the radio today on  RJ 1200 at 2:00 p.m. (1200 on the am dial)

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Childhood Glaucoma - even kids can go blind from it

Glaucoma is most often associated with adults but childhood glaucoma also exists.  A new study from the August 2013 issue of the journal Clinical Ophthalmology found that most childhood glaucoma is found in three categories of kids.  Read more.

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Sunday, September 8, 2013

Vision problems resulting from head and brain injuries - what we can learn from the way the US Army uses vision therapy

Recently an interview appeared between Dr. Kathy Freeman and Dr. Randall Beatty, an assistant professor in ophthalmology at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, about his experience treating combat eye injuries.

Dr. Beatty served as a colonel in the US Air Force Reserve Medical Service in Irag and Afghanistan, where he treated American service members and Iraqi and Afghan military and police personnel, as well as civilians, who experienced traumatic eye injuries during the course of the wars.

Below is the portion of the interview where the doctors talk about vision problems that arise from brain injuries. Dr. Freeman specifically mentions vision training (vision therapy) as a treatment. There is tons of evidence on the effectiveness of vision therapy in treating vision problems that result form brain injuries.  We have had considerable success in our Vancouver eye clinic treating vision problems that result form brain injuries sustained in car accidents, sports and falls.

Dr. Freeman: What are your thoughts on the traumatic brain injury that might be associated with these injuries?
Dr. Beatty: Well, traumatic brain injury was one of the things that kept us busy. A recent review of the VA literature reports that over 250,000 US service people have been diagnosed with some form of traumatic brain injury.2 The symptoms of those patients who have suffered traumatic brain injury are very similar to those associated with migraine headache—visual distortion, headaches, and extreme photosensitivity, not only to sunlight but even to lights inside. Some patients are very sensitive to the flickering of fluorescent lights. These are some visual disturbances that you won’t pick up just by having someone read an eye chart. The symptoms may be episodic, depending on how the patient is recovering from the post-concussive events, which can take quite a while; some may not really ever recover.
Dr. Freeman: How do you think eye care practitioners can best serve these veterans?
Dr. Beatty: I think that, overall, anyone who has been in a combat zone, and especially anybody who has had a concussion or suffered a concussive force by a nearby IED, will need to have very complete eye examinations on an ongoing basis. Dr. Glen Cockerham, at the VA Hospital in Palo Alto, California, did a study of returning veterans3 and, although the number was small, he found that a very high percentage of those veterans had some sort of ocular abnormality that could be attributable to their time in the combat zone. And that’s where we think that there may be problems with late-onset glaucoma as the years go by and as these veterans get older. In summary, very careful and complete eye examinations are necessary, and the emphasis cannot only be on detecting ocular pathology. It is essential to talk with these patients to determine what bothers them about their visual system—for example, do they experience photophobia or double vision? And, then, institute not only medical treatment but nonmedical as well—such as different types of eyewear that have tints, prism; low-vision devices that address the visual impairment; non-optical aids that can help with the distortion. In addition, there may be some need for different types of visual training. There should be attention to visual field analysis, detecting areas where there may be scotomas or blind spots.
And all of these things may be complicated by the fact that these patients also have cognition problems, deficits of short-term and long-term memory, which impacts their ability to handle low vision devices. Some of them have lost limbs or have other limitations that make it difficult to hold things and that complicate their visual rehabilitation. We’re now saving people on the battlefield with brain injuries and other types of trauma who, in the past, did not make it back to the trauma centers, and they are surviving and undergoing rehabilitation. This will result in more challenging long-term rehabilitative care, which is going to involve extensive physical and occupational therapy. And, in addition to those therapies, there should be visual rehabilitation.
The US army uses doctors of optometry to provide vision therapy to soldiers who have sustained brain injuries.  Here is a video:

Traumatic brain injury often results in convergence insufficiency
Dec 11, 2012

Brain injuries and vision problems 
Nov 04, 2012

Vision problems after car accident are caused by brain injury
Nov 07, 2012

Motion sickness and vision therapy - see sickness syndrome
Apr 18, 2012

Image courtesy of koratmember /

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Monday, September 2, 2013

Patient stories from the optometrist's office - meningioma diagnosed during a routine eye exam

Patient stories from the optometrists office from the BC Doctor's of Optometry:

Find out how a Doctor of Optometry helped diagnose Shrie with meningioma during a routine eye exam by watching the video below.

According to the Mayo Clinic:

A meningioma is a tumor that arises from the meninges — the membranes that surround your brain and spinal cord. Most meningiomas are noncancerous (benign), though, rarely, a meningioma may be cancerous (malignant). Some meningiomas are classified as atypical, meaning they're neither benign nor malignant, but rather something in between.
Meningiomas occur most commonly in older women. But a meningioma can occur in males and at any age, including childhood.
A meningioma doesn't always require immediate treatment. A meningioma that causes no significant signs and symptoms may be monitored over time.