Tuesday, June 21, 2011

LASIK Safety at D’Ambrosio Eye Care

If you or someone you know is considering LASIK you will want to know that the procedure is safe and has a solid overall track record of safety so that they can overcome any fear or anxiety they might have regarding the procedure. The safety of LASIK depends on a number of factors. By far the most important factors that can affect LASIK safety are the laser and instrumentation to be used to perform the treatment and even more so, the skill and experience of the LASIK Surgeon.

Long Term Track Record
Laser Eye Surgery for the Laser Vision Correction of nearsightedness was first performed in the United States upon Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval of the Excimer Laser on October 20, 1995. The Excimer Laser was specifically FDA approved for LASIK in 1998. So as of 2011, Laser Eye Surgery for Laser Vision Correction has been performed for 16 years and the LASIK procedure has been performed under FDA approval for more than 13 years. It is estimated that some 20 million patients worldwide have had LASIK. LASIK is generally considered one of the most successful and safe surgical procedures of any type. In skilled hands nearsighted patients can expect to achieve 20/40 vision more than 98 percent of the time and uncorrected vision of 20/20 or 20/25 in more than 90 percent of the time. The safety record is equally as impressive with regard to any loss of best-corrected vision where vision loss to a level of worse than 20/40 is quite rare occurring in about only 3 per 1,000 cases. Serious complications such as infection or corneal damage, occur even more infrequently in fewer than 1 in 1,000 cases. There is more to safety than simply the laser itself.

Safety is the Hands of the LASIK Surgeon
FDA approval provides some assurance but FDA approval does not indicate that a LASIK Surgeon is going to provide a thorough evaluation and consultation nor does it imply that LASIK Surgeons will provide a complete review of the possible risks and complications of LASIK or even that a LASIK Surgeon will use the appropriate screening and decision criteria to be sure that a patient is in fact a good candidate for LASIK or any Laser Eye Surgery for that matter.

With regard to LASIK safety, choosing a LASIK Surgeon is the most important decision a patient makes in deciding to have LASIK and is a significant part of making LASIK a safe and effective procedure. You should not choose a LASIK Surgeon based on slick advertising or low price. You should choose a LASIK Surgeon based on training and experience, reputation in the community and the comfort and rapport established during your consultation. It is ALWAYS the skill and experience of the surgeon that contributes the most to the overall safety of Laser Eye Surgery for the correction of nearsightedness, farsightedness and astigmatism. When you schedule a LASIK evaluation at D’Ambrosio Eye Care you will be under the care of JoAnn Chang, M.D., a Fellowship trained Corneal Specialist and LASIK Surgeon. Dr. Chang will be available to meet with you and answer your questions and help decide if LASIK is right for you. Call D’Ambrosio Eye Care Toll Free at 800-325-3937 to schedule an evaluation

Friday, June 17, 2011

Eyewear Trunk Show June 25, 2011

D’Ambrosio Eye Care is pleased to announce an upcoming EYEWEAR TRUNK SHOW on Saturday, June 25, 2011 in the Lancaster Optical Department from 9:00am to 1:00pm.

What is a trunk show? It is an event where we invite a couple of the representatives from the frame manufacturers to come in with an expanded line of frames to display for patients to look through. While our Optical Departments carry a very large selection of frames, the trunk show gives folks a chance to perhaps see frames in different colors and styles than we usually carry. In addition, during the trunk show, we offer an exceptional 35% discount on purchases (with some exceptions).

So, if you’re ready for a new pair of eyeglasses or sunglasses, stop by and take a look. In addition to terrific sale pricing, we will have refreshments, a gift with purchase and a free raffle drawing for a great prize. Come on by to see our Optical Department transformed with a summer theme.

If it’s time for an eye examination, please call D’Ambrosio Eye Care toll free at 1-800-325-3937 to schedule your appointment now so you’ll be ready for the trunk show!

Hope to see you there!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

SPOTLIGHT on Sahana Vyas, M.D.

Sahana Vyas, M.D. is the Retina and Macular Degeneration Specialist at D’Ambrosio Eye Care. Dr. Vyas sees patients in their Lancaster office.

Dr. Vyas received her undergraduate degree from Harvard University and graduated from Saba University School of Medicine. She did her internship at Brown University – Rhode Island Hospital and her residence at the University of Louisville (her home town) – Kentucky Lions Eye Center. She completed her fellowhip in vitreoretinal diseases and surgery at the University of Virginia.

She has been with the practice nearly five years and she sees patients with diabetes, retinal vascular disease and macular degeneration. Dr. Vyas has a very gentle touch with her patients which they greatly appreciate! Her technicians are also very caring and helpful with patients.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Tired of Burning, Dry Eyes?

“We are happy to once again be participating in an FDA study to assess candidates for a future dry eye study”, said Francis A. D’Ambrosio, Jr., M.D., Medical Director of D’Ambrosio Eye Care with offices in Lancaster, Gardner and Acton, MA.

Dry eye is the most prevalent form of ocular discomfort and irritation with millions of people affected with mild to moderate dry eye. It can be related to external factors, such as the low humidity of air-conditioned offices, dry heat in the winter, windy and dusty outdoor conditions, computer use for prolonged periods of time or the wearing of contact lenses. There are also internal factors; such as hormonal imbalance, autoimmune disease, use of prescribed systemic medication, anatomical changes or trauma and aging.

These symptoms result in, at a minimum, decreased quality of life, and in severe cases, pain, light sensitivity and impaired vision. Dr. D’Ambrosio, Jr. stated “as the population in the United States ages, accompanied by increased computer use, the evidence of dry eye will only increase”.

Assessment appointments will be held at D’Ambrosio Eye Care located at 479 Old Union Turnpike in Lancaster, MA, beginning in June, 2011.

We are looking to assess individuals based on the following criteria:

* Must be age 18 or older
* Have a history of dry eye in both eyes
* Willingness to go to D’Ambrosio Eye Care in Lancaster for appointments, if selected for the study

The initial assessment appointment will be between 1 – 2 hours in Lancaster, MA and individuals will be compensated for their time. If accepted into the study, it will begin in the Fall of 2011.

To see if you may qualify for the study, or have any questions regarding this study, please contact Jenny Easton at D’Ambrosio Eye Care toll free 1-800-325-3937 x314.

Is LASIK or PRK Better?

“Both LASIK and PRK are excellent choices for the appropriate patients”, commented JoAnn C. Chang, M.D., Cornea Specialist and LASIK Surgeon at D’Ambrosio Eye Care. Here are some considerations for you to know and understand about PRK vs. LASIK. First, the long-term clinical studies comparing PRK and LASIK show that the ultimate visual results of both types of laser treatment are virtually identical. However there are some subtle differences as well as some not so subtle difference.

“Patients who have LASIK may have very slightly reduced contrast sensitivity in dim illumination”, said Dr. Chang. “May” is the operative word here. If one uses extremely sensitive clinical measuring methods they can sometimes find a slight reduction in “low contrast” vision. Often it is so slight that the patient does not notice it except in the testing conditions or in very extreme instances of reduced contrast situations such as driving at dusk in the rain. Thus it is a limited problem for most patients.

The real differences between PRK and LASIK are based on the fact that PRK is a “surface laser treatment” and LASIK is a “lamellar laser treatment”. PRK is performed on the surface of the cornea whereas LASIK is performed between the layers of the cornea. To do a LASIK it is a 2-step procedure-one to create the “layer” or “flap” and one to apply the laser. To do a PRK is a single step procedure, just applying the laser. Thus, whenever you have a multi step eye surgery procedure there can be a greater possibility of risks, complications or side effects. “Fortunately the risks, side effects and complications of LASIK are relatively few and minor if you are indeed a good candidate and under the care of a top laser surgeon”, said Dr. Chang. So, PRK does offer a safer risk profile because it is a single step procedure. However one of the not so subtle differences is that because it is a lamellar procedure, LASIK does not disturb the surface of the cornea during treatment. This provides patients with a much faster visual recovery and significantly less discomfort than PRK. This is why from a consumer perspective patients have tended to want LASIK eye surgery more than PRK. They can get back to pretty many normal activities within a couple of days without any real pain-just some mild discomfort-and with good vision. Most LASIK patients are able to pass a drivers test with 24-48 hours of their laser treatment. PRK patients often experience moderate discomfort that can last a few days and depending on the degree of their prescription can take a week or so to achieve good functional comfortable vision. The simple answer to the question “Which is better PRK or LASIK?’, is best answered by calling D’Ambrosio Eye Care for an evaluation so that we can carefully and thoroughly review your individual situation. Please call us Toll Free at 800-325-3937.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Cataract Awareness Month at D’Ambrosio Eye Care

D’Ambrosio Eye Care wishes to announce that Prevent Blindness America has designated June as National Cataract Awareness Month. Cataracts are the leading cause of blindness worldwide. About 20.5 million Americans age 40 and older have cataracts and more than half of all Americans develop cataracts by age 80.

Many patients do not actually know that 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. They need to understand that cataracts are not a growth or a film over the eye. For many patients cataracts start out slowly and have little effect on vision at first. But, as the cataract becomes denser, so does the impact on vision. The most common symptoms that bother patients with cataracts include:

• blurring of vision
• sensitivity to light and glare
• double vision in one eye
• poor night vision
• fading or yellowing of colors
• frequent changes in glasses or contact lens prescriptions.

When cataracts do begin to interfere with daily activities or with patient comfort and safety, they can be treated surgically. Cataract surgery is one of the safest and most frequently performed surgeries in the United States. Today, at D’Ambrosio Eye Care in Lancaster, Acton and Gardner, Massachusetts Drs. D’Ambrosio Jr. and Chang provide a full range of Intraocular Lens Implants (IOL) that allow us to correct near vision as well as distance vision without requiring bifocals or reading glasses for the vast majority of patients. Please feel free to contact us with your questions about Cataracts, Cataract Surgery or Lens Implants by calling D’Ambrosio Eye Care Toll Free at 800-325-3937.