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World Glaucoma Week 2012

From March 7 to 13, the world was abuzz with activities planned to raise awareness of glaucoma during the first World Glaucoma Week, an expansion of the observance of World Glaucoma Day, launched in 2008 by the World Glaucoma Association and the World Glaucoma Patient Association.

Hundreds of local initiatives took place in countries circling the globe. They all shared the same goals: raising awareness of glaucoma and the need to get tested, encouraging regular screenings for early detection and treatment, and managing the disease for a fulfilling and productive life.

 The rationale for the global focus of the observance is very clear. It is estimated that only one-half of those affected with glaucoma in developed nations are aware that they have the disease, and as many as 90 percent of people with glaucoma in underdeveloped countries are unaware of having the disease or have not even heard of glaucoma.

Quick Facts about Glaucoma

Glaucoma is a progressive disease that degrades vision over time by increasing the intra ocular pressure (IOP) inside the eye. The odds of contracting glaucoma increase as one ages affecting only 1 in 200 people under 50 but 1 in 10 over eighty. The progression of the disease is slow and subtle and it is this factor that makes periodic screening for the disease a high priority in seniors and those over 55.

Glaucoma can be diagnosed during a standard eye exam and is quite manageable with surgery or medication with stopping the progression of the disease’s effects an achievable goal.

For more information, please view source below:





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Mythbusting Contact Lens that Melts in Eye….. So Untrue…

This is yet another urban legend, spreading via mails and social networks. As an Optometrist, I would like to blog about this, explaining the truth about contact lenses.

Surely some of you may have heard or read about some guy who worn a pair of contact lenses during a barbecue party; then minutes later started screaming for help, moving rapidly, jumping up and down….,, stating that contact lenses melting inside the eyes when are barbecuing or Sun Tanning.

A quick googling can easily shows that Contact Lenses need to be sterile before packaging. In order to have the contact lenses sterile, it would need to resist high heat. Therefore the myth stating the contact lenses melting in the eye is not true. By the way, just think about it, if the contact lenses melts at that temperature, could your eyes and face stand that much of heat?

The bottom line is, before the contact lenses melt on your eyes, your face’s skin might have burnt out.

However the risk of contact lenses mainly come from poor hygiene, negligence and overwearing expired contact lenses.

So, if you take care of your contact lenses, your contact lenses will take care of you too.

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Can Contact Lenses Get Lost inside My Eye?

Usually when someone asks, “Can my contact lenses get lost inside my eye?” they are wondering if it’s possible for a contact lens to become dislodged from the front of the eye and get lost or trapped behind the eye.

Here’s good news: That’s impossible.

The inner surface of the eyelids has a thin, moist lining called the conjunctiva. At the back of the eyelids, the conjunctiva folds back and becomes the outer covering of the white part of the eyeball.

The continuous nature of the conjunctiva from the eyelids to the eyeball makes it impossible for anything to get behind the eye and become trapped there. Please view figure below.

What To Do If It Seems Like One of Your Contacts Is Lost in Your Eye

Sometimes, if you rub your eyes or get bumped in the eye when wearing a soft contact lens, the lens might fold in half and dislodge from the cornea. The folded lens might get stuck under your upper eyelid so that it seems to have disappeared.

Usually if this happens, you will get the feeling that something is in your eye. Eye doctors call this feeling a “foreign body sensation.”

If this occurs, you can usually find the lens by adding a few contact lens rewetting drops to your eye and then gently massaging your eyelid with your eye closed. In most cases, the folded lens will move to a position on your eye where you can see it and remove it.

If the lens remains folded in half, soak it in contact lens solution for a few seconds, then gently rub the lens to return it to its original shape.

For better understanding, you could follow the few steps below according to what style of lens you are wearing.

Removing a  Soft Contact Lens From Under Your Upper Lid:

1) Look all the way down towards  your nose.

2) Close your eyes.

3) Place one finger over your lid at the  inside corner of your eye(near your nose)

4) Gently rub in one direction,  towards your ear, along the globe of your eye under your brow.

5) Open your  eye and notice you have pushed out from under your upper lid.

6) Remove the  lens.

That’s it, it’s that simple. If the lens did not come out, hold your upper  lid out of the way to see if it is still there. If you see it, repeat the  previous steps. If you don’t see the lens, take a break. It is highly possible  the lens isn’t even there anymore.

Removing a Gas Permeable Contact Lens From Under Your Upper Lid:

1) First, be over a surface where the lens will not get lost if it falls  out.

2) Locate the lens by holding your upper lid out of the way and look downward  into a mirror. (or have a friend look)

3) Once the lens is located, lift your upper lid entirely over the lens so  the entire lens is exposed.

4) Using the margin of your lid (where the lashes grow) gently push on the  upper edge of the contact lens.

5) When the proper connection is made, the lens will slide freely and  easily.

6) You can slide the lens back over the cornea, or pop it off.

Usually lenses don’t get dislodged unless they are rubbed or very dry. If you find that your lenses consistently move off center, you may consider contacting  your optometrist to verify the fit and type of lens is right for you.

If you cannot remove the lens from your eye with either of these methods, ask someone to help you, or call your local optometrist or eye doctor for assistance.

But don’t worry:

The lens won’t get trapped behind your eye or completely lost in your eye.

                                                   That’s impossible….

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Tips on Contact Lens Care Solutions

Saline solution is for rinsing and storing contact lenses, when you’re using a heat or UV disinfection system. You also may need it for use with enzymatic cleaning tablets or cleaning/disinfecting devices. Never use saline products for cleaning and disinfection.

Daily cleaner is for cleaning your contact lenses. You place a few drops in the palm of your hand and carefully rub the lens for as long as directed, usually around 20 seconds, making sure to clean both sides. Use other products for rinsing and disinfection.

Multipurpose solution is for cleaning, rinsing, disinfecting and storing your contact lenses. Clean your lenses as you would with daily cleaner, then rinse (as long as directed) and disinfect, all with the same solution; or rinse the lenses twice, then place them in the clean lens case with solution to clean and disinfect. When you are ready to wear the lenses, rinse them again. With multipurpose solutions, no other lens care products are necessary.

Hydrogen peroxide solution is for cleaning, disinfecting, rinsing and storing your contact lenses. With this product, you place your lenses in the provided basket and rinse them, then place the basket in its cup and fill the cup with solution to clean and disinfect your lenses. Hydrogen peroxide systems may help wearers who are sensitive to the preservatives in multipurpose solutions. Some lens holders for hydrogen peroxide systems have a built-in neutralizer (to convert the hydrogen peroxide to water, so it doesn’t sting your eyes), but with others you need to add a neutralizing tablet. After the disinfection and neutralizing step is completed, you can remove the lenses from the case and put them on. Never rinse your contacts with hydrogen peroxide solution and apply them directly to your eyes without completing the entire disinfecting and neutralizing step. Doing so can cause a painful chemical injury to the eye.

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Sharing Contact Lenses…. Sharing Risks of Infections!

While it is fairly uncommon to hear of contact lens wearers sharing their  prescription lenses with others, the increased popularity of non-corrective  colored and costume lenses has led to a surge in the swapping of contact lenses  amongst friends.

Since the lenses are not used to correct vision problems,  costume and colored contacts are often viewed by teenagers and young adults as  accessories rather than medical devices that require proper hygienic care. This emergence of lens sharing has lead to an increase in reported  instances of eye problems as a result of contact lens wear amongst teenagers.

Aside from slight to mild eye irritation, the most common problems associated  with swapping contact lenses with another person include eye abrasions, allergic  reactions and eye infections.

Eye Abrasions

Since contact  lenses need to be properly fitted for the wearer’s eyes, those who borrow lenses  from a friend are at risk of developing abrasions from an ill-fitting lens  rubbing against the eye. Prior to the occurrence of an abrasion, the lens wearer  may experience blurred vision, irritation or redness while wearing the lenses.

Allergic Reactions

In addition to wearing a lens that  doesn’t fit your eye properly, lens sharers are also at risk of experiencing  allergic reactions to contact lens solution, cleaning products and even the  material that is used to make the contact lens. When a practitioner conducts a  contact lens fitting, they can be sure that the contacts fit the wearer properly  and that the wearer does not have any known allergies to the lenses or  recommended cleaning products.

Eye infections

While they  are worn contact lenses are constantly bathed in the wear’s tears as well as any  bacteria that are present. Since lens swappers do not normally adhere to a  strict cleaning regime with their lenses, these bacteria are transferred from  one wearer to another. This lack of proper hygiene and transmission of bacteria  can lead to potentially dangerous eye infections that if not properly treated  can lead to vision loss.

Since wearers who are sharing or borrowing  contacts from a friend do not visit an eye care practitioner regularly, these  problems can persist and escalate quickly since the wearer is not likely to  obtain treatment in a timely manner.

Colored or costume contact  lenses offer a fun and easy way to change your look for an upcoming party or  event; however, it is imperative that you receive a non-corrective prescription  from a licensed eye care practitioner and receive instructions for how to  properly clean and care for the lenses. Without seeking a prescription for  costume or colored lens, you can unknowingly expose your eyes to a risky  situation.

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Happy Valentine’s Day 2012

Saint Valentine’s Day, commonly shortened to Valentine’s Day, is a holiday observed on February 14 honoring one or more early Christian martyrs named Saint Valentine. It is traditionally a day on which lover express their love for each other by presenting flowers, offering confectionery, and sending greeting cards (known as “valentines“).

The day first became associated with romantic love in the circle of Geoffrey Chaucer in the High Middle Ages, when the tradition of courtly love flourished. It was first established by Pope Gelasius I in 496 AD, and was later deleted from the General Roman Calendar of saints in 1969 by Pope Paul VI.

Modern Valentine’s Day symbols include the heart-shaped outline, doves, and the figure of the winged Cupid. Since the 19th century, handwritten valentines have given way to mass-produced greeting cards.

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Dangers of Sleeping with Contact Lenses!

Leaving contact lenses in overnight may not seem like a big deal, but understanding the problems which this bad habit may cause will make the effort of removing them and cleaning them seem well worthwhile.

Almost two-thirds of wearers said they would prefer to keep contact lenses in overnight if they could, so it is a common and convenient preference. Of course sleeping in contact lenses is a different matter to dozing in a chair for a nap, which is not a problem.

The tissue of your eye needs oxygen, otherwise it will begin to swell up and your vision may become blurred. If your eye tissue continues to be deprived of the oxygen it needs, then in extreme cases some small blood vessels may develop into the cornea in order to supply the tissue with the required oxygen. Left unchecked these blood vessels may grow long enough to block the vision permanently. Keeping contact lenses in is like keeping the eye underwater without any oxygen for days at a time. You can imagine that would not be at all healthy or good for the eyes, and keeping contact lenses in longer than they are designed for will have the same detrimental effect.

Secondly, sleeping with the contact lenses in does not give the eyes a break and therefore the eyes are more likely to suffer an infection, inflammation and abrasions. When you are awake your eyes continually produce tears to wash away germs, but during sleep this does not happen and bacteria and debris can collect and cause problems.

If your eyes become red, teary, swollen and painful or are more sensitive than usual, you need to see an eye doctor immediately.

In summary;


Contact lenses that are not designed for overnight wear block the flow of oxygen to the cornea. When oxygen is blocked, new blood vessels form in the eye in an attempt to bring in more oxygen. Because these are not normal blood vessels, they can interfere with your vision. Swelling and clouding of the cornea is another possible side effect from leaving daily wear contact lenses in your eyes when you sleep. These symptoms also interfere with clear vision.


Contact lenses worn when sleeping can cause an ulceration, or open sore, on the cornea. An ulcerated cornea is associated with bacterial infections, such as keratitis. Although the overall incidence is low, the risk of developing one of several forms of infectious keratitis, an eye disease associated with infection from various bacteria, is 80 times higher among contact lens wearers than non-wearers, and highest among those who use extended-wear lenses.

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Tips for Contact Lens Wearers Who Use Cosmetics

Being a contact lens wearer does not mean giving up wearing eye make–up. Below are make–up tips for sensitive eyes and contact lens wearers

  • Apply makeup after inserting contacts. Before applying makeup, insert your contact lenses.
  • Use eye drops before apply makeup so it does not ruin your handy work.
  • Never sleep in your makeup, especially if you wear contacts. Fine bits of makeup can get into your eyes leaving them red, dry and irritated when you wake up.
  • Consider using disposable mascara wands to avoid eye irritation. If you are prone to irritation around the eye area, consider investing in a bag of disposable mascara wands and use a new one each time you apply your mascara. This will help keep bacteria out of your eyes.
  • For sensitive eyes, stick to hypoallergenic formulas. If you have really sensitive eyes and most mascaras you try lead to itchy reactions, use the all natural hypoallergenic formulas found at most health food stores. Additionally, stay away from eyeliners that contain shimmer. The mica in them can scratch delicate skin and cause irritation.
  • Use waterproof mascaras and eyeliners. If you have problems with runny eyeliners either from using eye drops or having eyes that tear up easily, use waterproof eyeliner pencils to ensure they stay in place all day long.
  • Stay away from lining the inner rims of your eyes with eyeliner because it can irritate them.
  • Avoid pink–toned eye shadows, which can make your eyes look red, especially if you are experiencing any irritation.
  • When applying sunscreen, use a special SPF made for the eye area, and then use your regular facial sunscreen elsewhere. This way, sunscreen won’t run in your eyes and cause them to sting.
  • Prevent moisturizers from irritating your eyes.Use a cotton swab to wipe the lashline on the top and the bottom after applying eye cream to ensure nothing seeps into the eye.

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Tips on Contact Lens Care

While the office of your eye care professional is the best resource when it comes to caring for your lenses, the contact lens care video (below) and these “dos and don’ts” offer you some good general guidelines.


  • Wash your hands with a mild soap and dry them with a lint-free towel before touching your contacts.
  • Insert or remove your contacts in the same order (left then right or vice versa) to avoid getting your lenses mixed up.
  • Clean, rinse, and disinfect your contact lenses following your eye care provider’s instructions each time you remove them.
  • Keep all solution bottles closed when not in use.
  • Clean your contact lens case daily.
  • Replace your contact lens case every three months.
  • Remove contacts before you go swimming.


  • Allow soaps, cosmetics, or other substances to come into contact with your lenses.
  • Touch the tip of a contact lens care solution bottle to any surface, including your finger or your contact lens.
  • Reuse – or add additional solution to – old contact lens care solution in the case.
  • Wear contacts for longer than the prescribed time.
  • Use solution after the expiration date marked on the bottle.

 Source: http://www.coopervision.com/your-vision/contact-lens-care
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Who Invented the First Contact Lenses?

Did You Know?

The earliest contact lenses owe their development to artificial eye makers of the 19th century. The Thueringen area ofGermanywas at this time the centre of glass making and Friedrich Adolf Muller-Uri (1838-1879) founded the firm of F. Ad. Muller Sohne in Lauscha during 1860.  In 1868, together with his nephew Ludwig Muller-Uri (1811-1888) and glass-melting specialist Muller-Pathle, he managed to make artificial eyes from Kryolith glass.  This was much more resistant to the tears than previous glass and its greater lustre gave more realistic artificial eyes.  At the request of ophthalmologists Alexander (1828-1879) and Hermann Pagenstecher (1844-1932) the company re-located toWiesbaden.  Friedrich Adolf’s two sons, Friedrich Anton Muller-Uri (1862-1939) and Albert Carl Muller-Uri senior (1864-1923), gained professional recognition and rapidly expanded the business.  The brothers also made outsize artificial eyes to demonstrate pathological conditions for the use of many Universities.

In 1887 a Dr Samisch referred a patient who was already blind in the left eye because of cataract and whose right eyelids had been partially removed because of cancer.  It was anticipated that this eye would also be lost as a result of desiccation.  Muller blew a thin glass shell, like an artificial eye, and fitted it to the right eye for protection.  Reports state that the patient continued to use the Mullerschen Kontakt-schale night and day, retaining usable vision until his death in 1907.  The shell had a clear corneal section whilst the scleral portion was opaque with artificial veining to match the other eye.  This was a feature of Muller lenses for some time to come, concealing any redness caused by discomfort and hypoxia.  Breakage on dropping and corrosion by the tears was common, with a typical life expectancy of 12 – 18 months.

Friedrich Edward, (1891-1945) son of Friedrich Anton, also used the Muller lenses and on the 2nd August 1920 presented his doctoral thesis as Uber die korrektion des Keratokonus und anderer Brechungsanomalien des Auges mit Muellerschen Kontaktschalen.  His thesis reported on 11 keratoconic patients aged 22-58, wearing lenses for 1-8 years.  He concluded that Muller lenses could be worn for the correction of keratoconus and other visual defects without irritation; were safe for continuous wear, optically correct but not as accurate as ground lenses, were cosmetically very good and able to re-shape deformed corneas with light pressure, would arrest the growth of a developing cone and were easy to handle.



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