Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Boston Eye Exams with Indirect Ophthalmoscopy

When considering and eye exam in greater Boston it is helpful to learn about the types of instruments and techniques such as indirect ophthalmoscopy that might be used as part of your visit. During an eye exam, your eye doctor may instill eye drops to dilate your pupils. Dilation is often part of a comprehensive eye examination. It allows the doctor to see inside the back part of the eye. Some of the structures that become easier to see with dilation include the crystalline lens of the eye, the optic nerve and the retina.

The indirect ophthalmoscope is an instrument usually mounted on a headset. It projects a bright light and, when used in conjunction with a hand held lens, gives your eye doctor a stereoscopic view of the central and peripheral retina, as well as the optic nerve. This allows the doctor to look for pathology such as retinal hemorrhages, tumors and edema.

If you notice symptoms in your vision such as flashing lights or floating dots, your doctor will use the indirect ophthalmoscope to rule out peripheral retinal holes or tears. Your doctor may also use a technique called scleral depression which involves using mild pressure on the eyeball with an instrument such as a Q-Tip to better visualize the peripheral retina. This technique enhances the view of subtle pathology in the peripheral retina which could potentially lead to a retinal detachment.

For more information or to schedule an eye examination, contact D’Ambrosio Eye Care at 800-325-3937. You may also request an appointment at facebook.com/dambrosioeyecare.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Boston Eye Health Risk & Smoking

Boston eye care patients should be aware of the eye health risk smoking can have on your eyes-especially in terms of your risk of Cataracts and Age Related Macular Degeneration (AMD). Avoiding smoking, or quitting, is one of the best investments you can make in your long-term eye health. Smoking-even in your teens or twenties when your senior years seem far away-increases your future risks for Cataracts and Age Related Macular Degeneration (AMD). The more a person smokes, the greater the risks. In general, if you quit smoking the risks of these eye diseases decreases to approximately the same level as if you never smoked at all. Keep in mind that smoking also increases your risk of cardiovascular disease which also can affect your eyes. Besides the vascular problems mentioned smoking and even being around smokers and their second hand smoke increase the likelihood of dry eye. Learn more about eye health and smoking at D’Ambrosio Eye Care at 800-325-3937.

You may also request an appointment at facebook.com/dambrosioeyecare.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Boston Healthy Sight Choices

Making healthy sight choices in Boston is worth the effort. In a recent report by the American Foundation for The Blind, losing sight was tied with paralysis as the health condition that would have the most negative impact, considered worse than HIV/AIDS, cancer, stroke and several other serious medical conditions. Today’s eyewear can do more than just correct vision; it helps to optimize vision for everyday activities, and plays an important role in protecting and preserving vision for the future. Patients sometimes do not always know the full importance of eyewear. Eyewear can be viewed as a commodity rather than a health care product or medical device which leaves them as a consumer considering price as their ultimate concern when making eyewear selections. At D’Ambrosio Eye Care we educate patients to the importance of eyewear and that it can restore, maintain and enhance vision to enable the greater understanding of the value of vision care and eyewear. We want patients to take steps to protect vision.

Based on the legal principles of “informed choice” we feel, at D’Ambrosio Eye Care, that all patients should be informed so they can make knowledgeable eyewear purchases. Eyewear safety is an obligation that we take seriously as licensed providers. So if you ever have any questions or concerns regarding your vision or your eyewear choices stop by any of our locations anytime and we will be happy to help you choose your next pair of eyewear.

If you have any questions, or need an eye examination, please call D’Ambrosio Eye Care at 800-325-3927. You may also request an appointment at facebook.com/dambrosioeyecare.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Eye Refractions Billing & Cost

One of the most basic parts of an eye exam is checking the refraction of your eyes or an eye refraction test. This allows us to determine what your best possible vision is at that point in time while wearing a prescription optical lens and gives us the basis for prescribing a prescription optical lens. The most common type of eye refraction is called a Manifest Refraction and is performed without the use of eye drops so that we can examine the eye in a natural state. If you have ever had an eye exam, you are probably familiar with the “which is better, one or two” test-this is a manifest refraction.

Another type of eye refraction is called a cycloplegic refraction which is performed after the instillation of eye drops to temporarily immobilize the ciliary muscle of the eye. This temporarily prevents you from accommodating or “focusing” up close and is used when there is a need for an even more precise measurement of refractive error. In addition, the eye drops will also dilate the pupil so the eye doctor can easily see the back of the eye to examine the retina, optic nerve and blood vessels in order to evaluate their health.

From an insurance standpoint, eye refractions are considered part of a routine eye exam. Because refractions are normally used to determine refractive errors such as myopia, hyperopia, and astigmatism, and therefore prescribe eyeglasses or contact lenses, many insurance companies, particularly Medicare and Medicaid, do not pay for them. It's important to understand that when patients are having their eye exam, refractions are a necessary part of a routine eye exam and must be paid for out of pocket.

If you have questions about the cost of your refraction, or billing questions about refraction, please call D’Ambrosio Eye Care at 800-325-3937 and we will be glad to assist.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Glaucoma Laser Treatment

Glaucoma laser treatment has becoming one of the main modalities
for lowering eye pressure; it is safe, reliable and patient-friendly” states Bin (Benjamin) Wu, M.D., Glaucoma Specialist and Ophthalmologist at D’Ambrosio Eye Care.

“This procedure usually causes minimal discomfort, is painless and can be performed in our office. Contrary to what many people think, the “newer” version laser, Selective Laser Trabeculoplasty (SLT), is becoming more popular compared to the “older” version Argon Laser Trabeculoplasty (ALT) of Trabeculoplasty”, continues Dr. Wu.

The SLT laser has the advantage of utilizing very low levels of energy. The laser does not burn a hole through the eye. Instead, the eye's drainage system is changed in very subtle ways so that aqueous fluid is able to pass more easily out of the drain. It is termed "selective" since it leaves portions of the Trabecular meshwork intact. For this reason, it is believed that SLT, unlike other types of laser surgery, may be safely repeated. Dr. Wu further states “I have been treating my patients with laser since 2002 and many patients have been able to reduce the need for glaucoma drops.” Should you have any questions, or have a need for glaucoma treatment, please call D’Ambrosio Eye Care for an appointment at 800-325-3937. You may also request an appointment at facebook.com/dambrosioeyecare.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

LASIK is Affordable: Easy Payments, Flex Plans & Tax Refunds

Believe it or not, LASIK is affordable for just about anyone at D’Ambrosio Eye Care! That’s because we work to find ways to work with you to help you achieve your personal vision correction goals at D’Ambrosio Eye Care. Here are a few ways lots of our patients choose when they have LASIK at D’Ambrosio Eye Care.

Easy Payment Plans
Many of our patients use our easy payment monthly payment plans. We can arrange the amount you pay each month to fit your budget-AND you do not even have to put any money down! You can have your LASIK procedure today WITH NO MONEY DOWN-and with 0% interest if you would like!

Flex Plans-Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA)
Many employers offer Flex Plans-Flexible Spending Accounts or FSA’s. These plans allow you to have money taken out of your paycheck over time to pay for LASIK. What is even more appealing about Flex Plans is that money is withheld in Pre-Tax dollars allowing you to get extra tax savings. It is best to come in for a free consultation to find out if you are a candidate for LASIK-and then we can tell you exactly how much to have taken out of your paycheck!

Health Spending Accounts (HSA)
Health Spending Accounts are another way our patients can use Pre-Tax dollars to pay for LASIK and elective Lens Implants. If you have an HSA, it is best to come in for a free consultation to find out if you are a candidate for LASIK so we can tell you how much to allocate.

Insurance & Discount Fee for Service Plans
More and more health insurance or vision insurance plans are offering partial coverage or a discount for LASIK to their participants. We will be happy to review your plan. Even if we are not a direct provider on your plan, if you have coverage, we will make every attempt to honor your benefit allowance when you come to D’Ambrosio Eye Care.

Tax Refunds
Tax refunds often provide a nice source of unexpected cash that you can invest in yourself! If you know that you are going to be getting a tax refund, come in for a free consultation and find out if you are a candidate for LASIK. We can even use a very short term payment plan to help you get treated today and pay with your tax refund tomorrow.

Call D’Ambrosio Eye Care at 800-325-3937 for more information. You may also request an appointment at facebook.com/dambrosioeyecare.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Contact Lens Types

Contact lenses are available to correct almost any type of prescription. The most common type of prescription corrected by contact lenses is myopia, or nearsightedness. Astigmatism and hyperopia, or farsightedness, can also be corrected by contact lenses. “There are some medical conditions that affect the eye that cause distorted vision. Contact lenses may be the only way to provide clear vision to some of these patients”, stated Michael Fu, O.D., Optometrist at D’Ambrosio Eye Care.

Soft contact lenses make up the majority of contact lenses sold throughout the world. There are many varieties of soft contact lenses, including colored contacts, ultraviolet radiation blocking contacts, and aspheric contacts that potentially improve night vision. Rigid Gas Permeable contact lenses are useful in patients who demand crisp vision or who have large amounts of astigmatism. Hybrid contact lenses have a rigid center and a soft skirt surrounding it. These lenses try to combine the clarity of a rigid lens with the comfort of a soft lens.

Seeing an eye care provider familiar with all types of contact lenses will give patients the most options to correct their vision. For more information, or to schedule an eye examination to determine the appropriate lens for you, please contact D’Ambrosio Eye Care at 800-325-3937. You may also request an appointment at facebook.com/dambrosioeyecare.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Age Related Macular Degeneration Awareness in Massachusetts

Age Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) is the leading cause of visual impairment and blindness in Americans older than 50, affecting more than two million people. Although AMD is incurable, there are new treatments that can, at a minimum, prevent further vision loss from the disease and in many cases actually help recover lost vision,” commented Massachusetts Ophthalmologist Francis A. D’Ambrosio, Jr., M.D., Medical Director of D’Ambrosio Eye Care.

AMD causes central vision to blur, but leaves peripheral vision intact. It is progressive and painless. There are two types of ARMD: Dry and Wet. Approximately 90 percent of people with AMD have the dry form which results in gradual vision loss. Although only 10 percent of people with ARMD have the wet form, it generally progresses much quicker than the dry form. Wet AMD is characterized by the growth of abnormal retinal blood vessels that leak blood or fluid, causing rapid and severe central vision loss.

Patients can often reduce the risk of developing ARMD by not smoking as well as working to eat a heart-healthy diet rich in fish, fruit and green leafy vegetables, avoiding foods with trans fats, exercising and controlling blood pressure and weight. “We are fortunate to be able to offer Anti-Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor (VEGF) drugs that inhibit the development of unwanted blood vessels that cause wet ARMD as these agents are effective in helping to prevent further visual loss and even improve vision,” said Dr. D’Ambrosio, Jr.

Patients older than 50 years of age are encouraged to have a comprehensive, dilated eye examination every one to two years to ensure that ARMD is detected and treated early. The key to successful treatment is early detection and intervention.

If you or someone you know is at risk for AMD please call D’Ambrosio Eye Care at 800-325-3937 to schedule and eye exam. You may also request an appointment at facebook.com/dambrosioeyecare.