The Galveston and Houston eye doctors at The Eye Clinic of Texas wish to share some thoughts about eye health and vision for our Veterans. “With Veteran’s Day approaching it is important to consider some things regarding eye health and vision for Military Veterans. Veterans of the Iraq or Afghanistan wars are more likely than those who served in earlier wars to have vision loss as a result of traumatic brain injury (TBI). Higher rates of TBI in these recent wars can be attributed to two factors: explosive devices have been a major cause of injury, and improved body armor has enabled soldiers to survive more serious injuries,” commented eye doctor Allan Fradkin, M.D. “Veterans of the Vietnam, Korean, or early wars are in or entering life stages when eye disorders like Cataracts, Glaucoma, Age Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) and Diabetic Retinopathy are more likely to occur,” added eye doctor Bernard Milstein, M.D. Also, like everyone in mid-life and beyond, Veterans may find their near vision decreasing due to Presbyopia or “aging eyes”. So, our nation’s guardians and protectors should make sure to preserve and maintain their eye health and vision in order to take the fullest advantage of the freedom they have provided for all of us.

Learn more about eye health and vision at The Eye Clinic of Texas by calling us at 800-423-3937, visiting The Eye Clinic of Texas or facebook.com/ecot.lasik.

The Eye Clinic of Texas is a leading eye care practice serving the greater Houston, Galveston, League City and Texas City area that provides all aspects of general, medical, surgical, laser and optical eye care services. Our Board Certified Ophthalmologists perform Laser Eye Surgery such as LASIK, Cataract Surgery & Lens Implants using advanced technology IOLs to correct complex problems such as astigmatism and near vision focusing problems including presbyopia, diagnosis and management of glaucoma, diagnosis and management of diabetic retinopathy, diagnosis and management of Age Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) and Pediatric Ophthalmology. Texas EyeWear at The Eye Clinic of Texas provides personalized consultation and fitting of eyeglasses and eyeglass lenses for greater Houston, Galveston, League City and Texas City area patients.

“The topic of cataracts, lens implants and glasses comes up often among Houston eye care patients these days”, commented Galveston and Houston Cataract Surgeon Bernard Milstein, M.D. of The Eye Clinic of Texas. “With the increasing number of “baby boomers” entering the  age of cataract development there are lots of questions about cataract surgery and whether lens implants can help avoid the  need for glasses after a cataract is removed.” These types of questions are quite relevant as over the past 5 years, patient expectations and technology have driven a convergence of the goals of cataract surgery and refractive surgery.

Traditionally, the goal of Cataract Surgery was to remove the cloudy crystalline lens and replace it with an intraocular lens implant (IOL) of equivalent optical power so as to achieve “emmetropia” thus allowing patients to have good distance vision. The goal of Refractive Surgery is to help patients decrease or possibly even eliminate their dependence on eyeglasses or contact lenses. Today, a rapidly growing cataract patient population wants to achieve both the benefits of cataract surgery and refractive surgery in one combined procedure.

In order to meet patient expectations of being “glasses free” and help patients achieve their personal vision correction and lifestyle goals, it is necessary for us to first carefully select the type and design of lens implant as well as to accurately calculate the IOL power. The types and designs of lens implants that we work with include the following:

Monofocal Lens Implants

Monofocal lens implants are the most basic type of Lens Implant used to correct vision after removal of the crystalline lens. A Monofocal Lens Implant can provide very good vision after cataract surgery-but only at one set distance-usually for seeing things at a distance such as for driving or going to the movies. A Monofocal Lens Implant does not correct intermediate or arm’s length vision for doing things like playing cards and seeing the golf ball on the tee, or even seeing computer screens clearly. Monofocal lens implants do not correct near vision for doing things up close like seeing medicine bottles, reading, or keeping your golf score, as these tasks require the correction of presbyopia.

Toric Lens Implants

Toric lens implants correct astigmatism. For patients who have significant amounts of astigmatism prior to cataract surgery, and who do not wish to wear eyeglasses to see clearly at a distance, choosing a toric lens implant can help them be independent of glasses for tasks such as driving that require clear distance vision. Toric Lens Implants do not correct presbyopia, so that most patients still require reading glasses or bifocals to be able to comfortably perform near vision tasks such as reading and intermediate vision tasks such as computer work.

Near Vision Presbyopia Correcting Lens Implants

Near vision presbyopia correcting lens implants provide vision correction at the full range of distances-far or distance vision, arm’s length or intermediate vision and up close near vision. Depending on the specific vision requirements of the patient we can often use a presbyopia correcting multifocal lens such as the AcrySof®ReSTOR® Multifocal Lens Implant. Each of these works in a different way to help the patient achieve their vision correction goals of being able to see at a variety of distances without being dependent on eyeglasses or reading glasses. Patients choosing to have a presbyopia correcting lens implant will likely find that they can drive, watch television, play golf and keep score, read a menu, play cards or do crafts-without the need for glasses. Patients choosing a multifocal or accommodating lens implant typically experience a greater overall freedom from glasses, allowing them to participate in most everyday activities without the dependence on, or hassle of glasses.

“As cataract and refractive Surgeons, we routinely work to realistically shape patient expectations and then constantly strive to provide the medical, surgical and optical care necessary help patients meet or exceed them” commented Dr. Milstein. “When patients ask us, “Do I have to wear glasses after my cataract surgery?”, we make sure to help them understand that we can offer them the possibility of a lifestyle that minimizes or possibly eliminates their need for glasses through careful lens implant counseling”, said Dr. Milstein.  “For many patients, being able to essentially be “glasses free” adds a level of convenience and comfort to their everyday lives.”

If you or someone you know has questions about cataracts, cataract surgery or lens implants (IOL) please feel free to call and schedule an appointment at The Eye Clinic of Texas at 800-423-3937, visit The Eye Clinic of Texas or facebook.com/ecot.lasik.

The Eye Clinic of Texas is a leading eye care practice serving the greater Houston, Galveston, League City and Texas City area that provides all aspects of general, medical, surgical, laser and optical eye care services. Our Board Certified Ophthalmologists perform Laser Eye Surgery such as LASIK, Cataract Surgery & Lens Implants using advanced technology IOLs to correct complex problems such as astigmatism and near vision focusing problems including presbyopia, diagnosis and management of glaucoma, diagnosis and management of diabetic retinopathy, diagnosis and management of Age Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) and Pediatric Ophthalmology. Texas EyeWear at The Eye Clinic of Texas provides personalized consultation and fitting of eyeglasses and eyeglass lenses for greater Houston, Galveston, League City and Texas City area patients.

Galveston and Houston Ophthalmologist Dr. Da-Thuy Van of The Eye Clinic of Texas commented on contact lens care. “Contact lens care is an important part of comfortable and successful contact lens wear. Properly fit contact lenses can provide clear, comfortable vision. Maintaining good vision requires that patients properly care for their lenses. Proper cleaning, disinfection, and regular replacement of lenses are required to maintain healthy vision.”

Here are some things contact lens wearers should know. Although many contact lens solutions were approved as “No-Rub” solutions, many studies have shown that rubbing the lenses prior to soaking them at night is more effective at cleaning lenses than skipping the rubbing step.  Although some care systems have separate cleaners and disinfectants, most solutions today are multi-purpose solutions that can be used for both cleaning and disinfecting. When cleaning your lenses, make sure your hands are clean and you use a lint-free towel to dry your hands. Several drops of solution are placed in the palm of your hand and using the index finger of your other hand; rub the contact lens for several seconds. The lens should then be rinsed with the solution.  Soaking the lenses for 4 to 6 hours is usually required to disinfect the lenses. Water should not be used to rinse or soak your lenses as there may be impurities or microorganisms present. Proper replacement of lenses is also important to maintain healthy eyes. There are many types of disposable contact lenses with different replacement schedules. Disposable contact lenses can be single-use lenses that are thrown away at the end of each day so cleaning and disinfecting is not necessary. Other disposable lenses are replaced every 2 weeks, monthly, and quarterly.

To learn more about contact lenses or to have an eye exam and contact lens fitting please call The Eye Clinic of Texas at 800-423-3937, visit The Eye Clinic of Texas or facebook.com/ecot.lasik.

The Eye Clinic of Texas is a leading eye care practice serving the greater Houston, Galveston, League City and Texas City area that provides all aspects of general, medical, surgical, laser and optical eye care services. Our Board Certified Ophthalmologists perform Laser Eye Surgery such as LASIK, Cataract Surgery & Lens Implants using advanced technology IOLs to correct complex problems such as astigmatism and near vision focusing problems including presbyopia, diagnosis and management of glaucoma, diagnosis and management of diabetic retinopathy, diagnosis and management of Age Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) and Pediatric Ophthalmology. Texas EyeWear at The Eye Clinic of Texas provides personalized consultation and fitting of eyeglasses and eyeglass lenses for greater Houston, Galveston, League City and Texas City area patients.

The Galveston and Houston eye doctors at The Eye Clinic of Texas wished to advise our community about the possible related risks from using improper contact lenses as part of Halloween fun when trying to alter the appearance of their eyes. “Halloween, decorative contact lenses and your eyes may not be a great combination,” remarked Allan Fradkin, M.D. “While Halloween can be a great time with interesting costumes and decorations, many participants try to turn their eyes from blue to some far out appearance or ghoulish look by using over-the-counter, decorative contact lenses that may enhance holiday fun, but can lead to serious vision-threatening problems,” Dr. Fradkin explained. According to the Food and Drug Administration, all contact lenses are 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 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, noncorrosive lenses-sometimes called Plano-or zero-powered lenses, but that they buy the devices without a prescription through unlicensed vendors on the Internet or at flea markets and specialty shops. 

The buyer of these over-the-counter contact lenses faces a huge risk including scratched corneas, pink eye and more serious types of blinding infection as a result of a corneal ulcer. In 2005, a federal law was passed that classified all contact lenses as medical devices and restricted their distribution to licensed eye-care professionals. Illegal sale of contacts can result in civil penalties of up to $11,000 per violation. 

The safe and effective use of contact lenses-whether 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 decorative contacts please call The Eye Clinic of Texas at 800-423-3937, visit The Eye Clinic of Texas or facebook.com/ecot.lasik to schedule an appointment.

The Eye Clinic of Texas is a leading eye care practice serving the greater Houston, Galveston, League City and Texas City area that provides all aspects of general, medical, surgical, laser and optical eye care services. Our Board Certified Ophthalmologists perform Laser Eye Surgery such as LASIK, Cataract Surgery & Lens Implants using advanced technology IOLs to correct complex problems such as astigmatism and near vision focusing problems including presbyopia, diagnosis and management of glaucoma, diagnosis and management of diabetic retinopathy, diagnosis and management of Age Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) and Pediatric Ophthalmology. Texas EyeWear at The Eye Clinic of Texas provides personalized consultation and fitting of eyeglasses and eyeglass lenses for greater Houston, Galveston, League City and Texas City area patients.

The Eye Clinic of Texas Galveston and Houston Ophthalmologists wish to note that October has been designated Eye Injury Prevention Month by the American Academy of Ophthalmology. When most people go out to mow the lawn, jump-start the car or get ready to do some spring cleaning, the last thing they think about is protecting their eyes, but it should be first on their mind. It is a good idea to think about protecting your eyes from the extraordinary damage often caused by the most ordinary of activities. Many household chemicals, such as cleaning fluids, detergents and ammonia, are extremely hazardous and can burn the eye’s delicate tissues. When using chemicals, always read instructions and labels carefully, work in a well-ventilated area and make sure spray nozzles point away from you and others before spraying. Be sure to wash your hands thoroughly after use. Before using a lawnmower, power trimmer or edger, check for debris. Stones, twigs and other items can become dangerous projectiles shooting from the blades of a lawnmower, potentially injuring your eyes or those of innocent bystanders. Prevention is the first and most important step in avoiding serious eye injuries, so be sure to protect your eyes with appropriate protective eyewear. If you or someone you know have questions about preventing eye injury and eye safety please call The Eye Clinic of Texas at 800-423-3937, visit The  Eye Clinic of Texas or facebook.com/ecot.lasik and schedule an appointment.

The Eye Clinic of Texas is a leading eye care practice serving the greater Houston, Galveston, League City and Texas City area that provides all aspects of general, medical, surgical, laser and optical eye care services. Our Board Certified Ophthalmologists perform Laser Eye Surgery such as LASIK, Cataract Surgery & Lens Implants using advanced technology IOLs to correct complex problems such as astigmatism and near vision focusing problems including presbyopia, diagnosis and management of glaucoma, diagnosis and management of diabetic retinopathy, diagnosis and management of Age Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) and Pediatric Ophthalmology. Texas EyeWear at The Eye Clinic of Texas provides personalized consultation and fitting of eyeglasses and eyeglass lenses for greater Houston, Galveston, League City and Texas City area patients.

Galveston & Houston Ophthalmologist Dr. Da-Thuy Van commented on insurance copays, coinsurance and deductibles. “Understanding insurance copays, coinsurance and deductibles is very confusing. With the ever-increasing cost of healthcare, many patients find themselves with higher copays, coinsurance and/or deductibles. It can be confusing to understand all of these terms but it is a very important that patients take part in understanding their medical bills,” explained Dr. Van.

A co-payment, or co-pay, is the flat amount the patient pays each time they see their medical provider. Your insurance establishes these fees up front and many insurance companies print this information on your insurance ID card. Coinsurance and co-payments are not the same thing. A co-payment is a set amount that you pay each time you see your medical provider. On the other hand, coinsurance is typically a certain percentage of the provider’s fee that is owed by the patient. For example, some insurance companies pay 80% and the patient is responsible for the remaining 20%. That 20% is the coinsurance that is due from the patient per the insurance company. The amount the patient owes will vary based on the fee for the service. A deductible is a fixed amount of money that the patient must pay before the insurance company begins making payment. For example, let’s say a patient has an insurance policy with a $100 deductible. If the insurance considers $300 of the services provided as “covered” services, the patient must pay $100 and the insurance will pay the remaining $200. Deductible amounts are typically calculated yearly so that means that beginning January 1st of each new calendar year, you must meet your deductible before your insurance will issue payment. If you have any questions insurance copays, coinsurance and deductibles, please contact The Eye Clinic of Texas at 800-423-3937 and we will be happy to help.  

The Eye Clinic of Texas is a leading eye care practice serving the greater Houston, Galveston, League City and Texas City area that provides all aspects of general, medical, surgical, laser and optical eye care services. Our Board Certified Ophthalmologists perform Laser Eye Surgery such as LASIK, Cataract Surgery & Lens Implants using advanced technology IOLs to correct complex problems such as astigmatism and near vision focusing problems including presbyopia, diagnosis and management of glaucoma, diagnosis and management of diabetic retinopathy, diagnosis and management of Age Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) and Pediatric Ophthalmology. Texas EyeWear at The Eye Clinic of Texas provides personalized consultation and fitting of eyeglasses and eyeglass lenses for greater Houston, Galveston, League City and Texas City area patients.

“LASIK for astigmatism is not only possible-but we use it all the time as an excellent way to correct vision”, said Houston LASIK Surgeon Bernard Milstein, M.D. of The Eye Clinic of Texas where he performs LASIK for patients with astigmatism from throughout the greater Houston area. “Astigmatism is something that is often confusing to patients. Also, in addition to being confused by what astigmatism is, a lot of people are under the incorrect impression that having astigmatism means you can’t have Laser Eye Surgery such as LASIK to correct your vision,” commented Dr. Da-Thuy Van of The Eye Clinic of Texas.

Here is what you need to know about LASIK and astigmatism. First, astigmatism is one of the common types of refractive problems that cause blurry vision. Common refractive-or eye focus problems-include nearsightedness or myopia, farsightedness or hyperopia, astigmatism and presbyopia.

Astigmatism usually results from an unequal curvature of the cornea-the outermost clear dome in the front of the eye-that causes the eye to have two different curvatures and thus two different focal points. This can make images look more blurry at a specific orientation so that things horizontally are blurred or things vertically are blurred, depending on the direction of the astigmatism. Astigmatism can be very annoying visually and can even cause headaches and many visual symptoms apart from the blurriness itself. The visual distortions caused by astigmatism in healthy eyes are correctable with eyeglasses, contact lenses and Laser Vision Correction such as LASIK. During the early years after the initial FDA approval of Laser Vision Correction, the treatment of astigmatism was not yet approved and released in the United States. Shortly thereafter all of the FDA approved lasers were able to be programmed for astigmatism correction and received FDA approval to do so. Astigmatism has been correctable with Laser Eye Surgery for more than 15 years in the United States. “Today, as LASIK surgeons, we are able to accurately measure and treat all types of astigmatism with high degrees of precision and predictability,” said Dr. Van.

If you or someone you know has astigmatism and would like to be less dependent or possibly even free from the hassle of glasses and contact lenses for seeing at distance, please call The Eye Clinic of Texas at 800-423-3937 for a Free Evaluation for Laser Eye Surgery for the Laser Vision Correction of astigmatism.   

The Eye Clinic of Texas is a leading eye care practice serving the greater Houston, Galveston, League City and Texas City area that provides all aspects of general, medical, surgical, laser and optical eye care services. Our Board Certified Ophthalmologists perform Laser Eye Surgery such as LASIK, Cataract Surgery & Lens Implants using advanced technology IOLs to correct complex problems such as astigmatism and near vision focusing problems including presbyopia, diagnosis and management of glaucoma, diagnosis and management of diabetic retinopathy, diagnosis and management of Age Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) and Pediatric Ophthalmology. Texas EyeWear at The Eye Clinic of Texas provides personalized consultation and fitting of eyeglasses and eyeglass lenses for greater Houston, Galveston, League City and Texas City area patients.

Galveston and Houston Ophthalmologist Allan Fradkin, M.D. of The Eye Clinic of Texas shared thoughts about the need for school eye exams to avoid vision problems as we head back for a new school year. “We want parents to help get kids back to school on the right foot with a thorough eye exam,” stated Dr. Fradkin. “Parents should be aware that it is possible for their children to have a serious vision problem without even being aware of it.”

Making sure children have health eyes and are seeing well requires a comprehensive eye exam to look for eye problems and conditions such as lazy eye or amblyopia, crossed eyes or strabismus, droopy eyelid called ptosis, color blindness or deficiencies as well as the common refractive errors including nearsightedness, farsightedness and astigmatism-all of which can impact learning and the ability to enjoy recreational activities safely.

In addition, The Eye Clinic of Texas wishes to announce that Prevent Blindness America has designated September as Children’s Eye Health & Safety Awareness Month. Eye and vision problems affect one in twenty preschoolers and one in four school aged children. Infants should be screened for common eye problems during their regular pediatric appointments and vision testing should be conducted for all children starting at around three years of age. If there is a family history of eye problems, or if an eye problem is apparent, it is important to bring it to the attention of an eye doctor so that they can advise the parents about when and how often their child’s eyes should be examined.

To learn more about children’s vision, eye health and eye problems please call The Eye Clinic of Texas at 800-423-3937 to schedule an appointment, visit The Eye Clinic of Texasor facebook.com/ecot.lasik.

The Eye Clinic of Texas is a leading eye care practice serving the greater Houston, Galveston, League City and Texas City area that provides all aspects of general, medical, surgical, laser and optical eye care services. Our Board Certified Ophthalmologists perform Laser Eye Surgery such as LASIK, Cataract Surgery & Lens Implants using advanced technology IOLs to correct complex problems such as astigmatism and near vision focusing problems including presbyopia, diagnosis and management of glaucoma, diagnosis and management of diabetic retinopathy, diagnosis and management of Age Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) and Pediatric Ophthalmology. Texas EyeWear at The Eye Clinic of Texas provides personalized consultation and fitting of eyeglasses and eyeglass lenses for greater Houston, Galveston, League City and Texas City area patients.

Galveston and Houston Cataract Surgeons from The Eye Clinic of Texas want to share some thoughts about Cataract and Macular Degeneration. “Cataracts and Age Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) share at least one common risk factor-AGE”, commented Houston Cataract Surgeon Dr. Da-Thuy Van. “Cataract formation and Macular Degeneration both increase in frequency and incidence with age and thus it is pretty common to have one, the other or both as we head through our 50’s, 60’s and 70’s. The question that many patients get confronted with is whether to have Cataract Surgery if they have Macular Degeneration. And if they do-will it make the AMD get worse and faster.”  The general consensus among Cataract Surgeons is that with proper preoperative diagnostic testing, examination, and consultation, patients who have Age Related Macular Degeneration (ARMD) and who develop a Cataract are able to have Cataract Surgery after being counseled on what to expect with regard to overall vision improvements and lifestyle benefits. While ARMD is not a reason to avoid Cataract Surgery, realistic expectations must be established by and between you and your cataract surgeon. Further, the most current and widely accepted studies on AMD progression after cataract surgery found that there was no difference in the frequency of the disease among patients who had Cataract Surgery as compared to those who did not.

If you or someone you know has questions about Cataracts & Macular Degeneration please feel free to call The Eye Clinic of Texas at 800-423-3937, visit The Eye Clinic of Texas or facebook.com.ecot.lasik to schedule an appointment.

The Eye Clinic of Texas is a leading eye care practice serving the greater Houston, Galveston, League City and Texas City area that provides all aspects of general, medical, surgical, laser and optical eye care services. Our Board Certified Ophthalmologists perform Laser Eye Surgery such as LASIK, Cataract Surgery & Lens Implants using advanced technology IOLs to correct complex problems such as astigmatism and near vision focusing problems including presbyopia, diagnosis and management of glaucoma, diagnosis and management of diabetic retinopathy, diagnosis and management of Age Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) and Pediatric Ophthalmology. Texas EyeWear at The Eye Clinic of Texas provides personalized consultation and fitting of eyeglasses and eyeglass lenses for greater Houston, Galveston, League City and Texas City area patients.

Galveston and Houston eye specialists commented on the relationship between glaucoma and metabolic syndrome based on a recent publication. Reporting in the July 2011 publication Ophthalmology, the official journal of the American Academy of Ophthalmology, researchers suggested that the risk of developing Open Angle Glaucoma (OAG) may be increased if you suffer from Metabolic Syndrome. Patients with diabetes mellitus, systemic arterial hypertension or high blood pressure, hyperlipidemia or high cholesterol and triglycerides and obesity have elevated risks of developing Open Angle Glaucoma. They concluded that “Given that approximately one-fifth of the U.S. population has metabolic syndrome, and that both metabolic syndrome and OAG increase in prevalence with age, our data suggest that as the U.S. population ages, the disease burden of OAG may increase in the coming years” The authors performed statistical analysis to determine patients’ risk of developing OAG in conjunction with individual and combined types of metabolic syndrome. Data were adjusted for social and demographic factors, systemic medical conditions and other ocular diseases. The adjusted data showed that subjects with diabetes alone had a 35% increased risk of developing OAG, and those with hypertension alone had a 17% increased risk. Those with diabetes and hypertension combined had a 48% risk. Those with hyperlipidemia alone had a 5% decreased risk. Obese subjects had a 14% increased risk. Patients with diabetes, hyperlipidemia and hypertension combined had a 26% increased risk and the risk of developing OAG were higher in African Americans, Latinos and Asian Americans than in Caucasians, the authors reported.

If you or someone you know has questions about Glaucoma Risk please feel free to call The Eye Clinic of Texas at 800-423-3937, visit The Eye Clinic of Texas or facebook.com/ecot.lasik to schedule an appointment.

The Eye Clinic of Texas is a leading eye care practice serving the greater Houston, Galveston, League City and Texas City area that provides all aspects of general, medical, surgical, laser and optical eye care services. Our Board Certified Ophthalmologists perform Laser Eye Surgery such as LASIK, Cataract Surgery & Lens Implants using advanced technology IOLs to correct complex problems such as astigmatism and near vision focusing problems including presbyopia, diagnosis and management of glaucoma, diagnosis and management of diabetic retinopathy, diagnosis and management of Age Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) and Pediatric Ophthalmology. Texas EyeWear at The Eye Clinic of Texas provides personalized consultation and fitting of eyeglasses and eyeglass lenses for greater Houston, Galveston, League City and Texas City area patients.