News Flash

Green tea and your eyes.

New research from Hong Kong suggests that green tea may protect against eye diseases such as glaucoma because the researchers found green tea antioxidants called catechins present in various tissue structures in the eyes of laboratory rats after they had ingested green tea.

The researchers, based at Hong Kong Eye Hospital and the Prince of Wales Hospital in Hong Kong, have written about their findings in a paper that appeared in the 2010 February print issue of the American Chemical Society’s bi-weekly Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry.

Green tea contains catechins, which belong to the family of antioxidants that includes vitamin C, vitamin E, lutein, and zeaxanthin and is well known for its disease-fighting properties. These results indicate that green tea consumption could benefit the eye against oxidative stress. However, more studies are needed to verify the same effects occur in humans.

Eye disorder among diabetes.

To describe the prevalence and risk factors of diabetic retinopathy among U.S. adults with diabetes aged 40 and older, researchers analyzed a sample of the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2005–2008. In the approximately 1,000 diabetics, 28.5% had diabetic retinopathy and 4.4% had vision threatening diabetic retinopathy. Diabetic retinopathy was slightly more prevalent among men than women. African American populations had a higher prevalence than Caucasian individuals of diabetic retinopathy and vision-threatening diabetic retinopathy. Based on this study, yearly examination of the retina is essential to preserve the normal function among diabetes.

Preventing macular degeneration with Omega-3.

The National Eye Institute investigated progression to advanced macular degeneration in 1,837 people at moderate-to-high risk of this condition. They found that participants who reported the highest omega-3 long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids intake were 30% less likely to develop geographic atrophy and neovascular macular degeneration.

Finally, 3D gaming glasses

The latest consumers electronic show in Las Vegas debut many latest and the greatest technology in consumers electronic. Without a doubt, 3D gaming and video is at the center stage this year. Every major brand was showing off what they can do with the 3D technology. However, there is a missing link, a good quality 3D viewing glasses at a reasonable price. The wait is over! Trinity Eye Care is proud to provide you with 3D gaming and video glasses. Manufactured with optical quality material, the Gunnar 3D glasses provide the brightest 3D viewing experience with no color distortion. A 3 million dollar movie should not be experienced with eyewear that cost less than a gum ball!! Call us for details.

Computer and your eyes.

One of the major cause of eye strain is prolong uses of computer. Studies show that our eyes only blink at 30% of normal rate while we are looking at the computer. There is several ways we can do to relief computer related eye strain.

•Look away from the computer every 20 minutes. Even as brief as 20 second did a lot of relief for your eyes. Try to fixate at an object 20 feet away while you are looking away.

•Use computer glasses while you are working with a computer. One of the newest computer lenses is called Gunnars lenes from Gunnars Optik. It carry a mild prescription in a patented colored lenses aim at improving contrast on a computer screen. The lenses also has a very unique face form to keep the moisture in your eyes. As a result, your eyes will not dry out as much while you are working on your computer.

It is important that the eyes are relaxed in the morning. At least 6-8 hours sleep are essential for guaranteeing that the eyes and the body have the correct amount of rest. To achieve the best level of body regeneration, any source of eyestrain should be avoided before going to sleep (for example, it’s a very bad habit to watch TV or work on the computer for a long time before going to bed!).

Colored iris implant

Lately, I have patients asked me about color iris implant that will permanently change the color of your eyes. As I do more research on this, I feel compel to warn my patients about this procedure. First of all, any medical procedure that is only performed overseas is not FDA approved. FDA is a government body, which regulate the safety and efficacy of all medicine (such as antibiotics), medical devices (such as pacemakers), as well as medical procedures (such as LASIK). If FDA does not approve a procedure, it is either because it is an experimental procedure, insufficient data is gathered to prove its safety and efficacy or it is not safe and effective to the public. The FDA is very careful in their approval process, it usually takes extensive evident to pass their approval guideline. Any procedure that is not approved by FDA

The colored iris implant is a permanent implant placed intraocularly at the anterior chamber of the eye to mask the original iris. The anterior chamber is the space between the iris and the cornea. Once the implant is placed, it is permanent, unless for severe hypersensitive reaction, otherwise, it is there for life. Whether you like the iris color or not, it will stay with you. Even if you do not like the change of color, it cannot be undone.

What are the other risks of this implant? First, since it is rested at the anterior chamber, there is a risk of developing secondary glaucoma due the obstruction of the normal fluid dynamic of the intraocular fluid. Furthermore, the implant may also rub against the iris, and risking the development of pigmentary glaucoma.

The procedure was similar to modern day cataract surgery, it is an intraocular procedure, which means, the surgeon does have to make an incision to place the implant inside the eye. Intraocular surgery always has the risk of intraocular infection that can lead to losing an eye.

The colored iris is definitely a radical way of altering the iris color, it is one of those procedures that sound simpler than the truth, and its risk is definitely outweighing the benefit. Dr.Pang gives it a thumb down.

Study shows contact lenses improve children’s self perceptions.

Data from the Adolescent and Child Health Initiative to Encourage Vision Empowerment (ACHIEVE) study assessing the effects of glasses and contact lenses on the self-perception of 484 nearsighted children ages eight to 11 years showed that contact lenses provide value-added benefits (improved self perception about social acceptance, scholastic competence, athletic competence and physical appearance) to children beyond simply correcting their nearsightedness. The randomized, single-masked trial was conducted from September 2003 to October 2007 at five clinical centers in the United States. Researchers randomly assigned children to wear spectacles or contact lenses for three years, and the three benefits were measured against each group at a regular basis. Additionally, it was revealed that for children who initially dislike wearing glasses, contact lenses also make them more confident about their academic performance. This study is supported by funding from Johnson & Johnson Vision Care, Inc. and The Vision Care Institute, LLC, a Johnson & Johnson Company.

Medications And Eye Sight.

Treatment with a large number of topical and systemic medications can impact on healthy sight, leading to either immediate or long-term consequences. They may play a role in the development of ocular disease (e.g., cataracts, glaucoma and retinal pathology) or produce disturbing ocular symptomatology. Of particular concern are agents that can produce blurry vision due to temporary changes in refraction, glare or increased light sensitivity and cataract formation. (For a more complete description of medications and their effects as photosensitizers and photosensitization, please click on the following link Medication and you Q&A)

UV Radiation and Eye Disease

While many factors have been proposed as risk factors for cataract and macular degeneration, there is strong experimental and epidemiologic evidence pointing to the association between UV radiation exposure and these potentially blinding eye diseases. Laboratory studies in experimental animals have clearly demonstrated the adverse effects of UVR on ocular tissues. Two important epidemiologic studies in humans (the Chesapeake Bay Waterman Study and the Beaver Dam Study) have suggested a relationship between prolonged time spent outdoors in the sun particularly early in life and the development of cortical cataracts and macular degeneration. Distinct hereditary patterns for cataract and macular degeneration have yet to be defined, but some genetic role has been postulated. For individuals who have multiple family members suffering from cataract and/or macular degeneration or in those who demonstrate early forms of these disorders, UV radiation protection is an important preventive measure, particularly if their lifestyles include above-average environmental, occupational or recreational exposure to light.

Nutrients for healthy eyes: Vitamins for macular degeneration.

The National Institutes of Health is conducting a 4,000-patient clinical trial to evaluate the effects of various nutrient on eye health. The study, called the second Age-Related Eye Disease Study (AREDS2), was developed after tan earlier study (AREDS) found age-related macular degeneration to be a nutrition responsive disorder. The AREDS2 supplementation includes a recommended daily dose of the followings:
Lutein 10 mg
DHA 350 mg
Vitamin C 500 mg
Zinc 25 mg
Zeaxanthin 2 mg
EPA 650 mg
Vitamin E 400 IU
Copper 2 mg
If you have any question regarding the recommended supplement, please ask our office staffs or Dr.Pang for answers.

Combination Treatment for AMD in Women

In a recent clinical study recorded in the Achieve of Internal Medicine, the benefit of a daily supplement with folic acid, vitamin B6, vitamin B12 was examine against the risk of developing age related macular degeneration. This randomized, double-blind, trial including 5442 female healthcare professionals of 40 years old or older with preexisting cardiovascular disease. The result indicated that daily supplementation with folic acid, pyridoxine (vitamin B6) and cyanocobalamin (vitamin B12) did reduce the risk of Age related Macular Degeneration (AMD).

Included in this analysis were 5205 women who did not have a diagnosis of AMD at baseline. These participants were randomly assigned to receive a combination of folic acid (2.5 mg/d), pyridoxine hydrochloride (50 mg/d) and cyanocobalamin (1 mg/d) or placebo.

There were 55 cases of AMD in the treatment group after an average of 7.3 years of treatment and follow up and 82 cases in the placebo group. In the case of visually significant AMD, there were 26 cases in the treatment group and 44 in the placebo group.

In conclusion, these randomized trial data from a large cohort of women at high risk of cardiovascular disease indicate that daily supplementation with folic acid, pyridoxine and cyanocobalamin reduce the risk of AMD.

Food for healthy eyes:

We all know that vitamins A, C, E are good for our eyes, however, where can we find these vitamin naturally? Carrots are one of the best sources of nourishment for fresh, healthy eyes because they contain vitamin A and beta-carotene (pro-vitamin A), essential for the development of the vision pigment, rhodopsin. Turnip, spinach and melon also contain fairly high amounts of vitamin A and carotene. Vitamins C and E protect cells from free radicals, the aggressive molecules that can be the cause of serious internal damage. Citrus fruit, red fruit and kiwis are rich in vitamin C and protect the eyes from the harmful effects of free radicals. Proper amounts of vitamin E, on the other hand, are provided by olive oil and nuts.

Fresh fish for eye care. A 2008 study by the Harvard Medical School showed that eating fish regularly fosters eye well being. Fish contains Omega-3, the polyunsaturated fatty acid that protects the entire body from cardiovascular diseases and acts as a “balm” for the eyes. This prevents and alleviates the annoying itchiness and burning feeling caused by “dry eye syndrome”. Omega-3 is found in mackerel, cod, swordfish, herring and sardines. Linseed oil also has high concentrations of Omega-3.

Virtual display right in front of your eyes.

How would you like to look up a recent news article or your favorite website via your contact lens? Sound far-fetched? Not according to engineers at the University of Washington. They have been able to combine a soft contact lens with an imprinted electronic circuit and red L.E.D. Although it does not yet light up, the engineers promised the ultimate goal of providing wearers with virtual displays. They hope to power the lens via a combination of radio frequency power and solar cells attached to the lens. Rabbits wore the lenses for up to 20 minutes without any adverse effects.

NEC Launches eyewear that translate in real time.

The new device perfected by NEC allows people of different languages to communicate by providing real-time translations directly on the retina.

The eyeglasses produced by NEC seem to come straight out of a science fiction movie: the device promises to eliminate linguistic barriers by allowing a Chinese speaker to communicate with an Arabic speaker without the use of gestures or dictionaries. The product, explained the Afp agency, is called Tele Scouter and is a lensless frame fitted with a camera. A microphone picks up the conversation and sends it to a small computer, which is “worn” by the user at waist level and is programmed to translate the conversation.

The information appears before the user’s eyes, something like the subtitles in a movie. The words are picked up by the microphone, translated and sent to the other person’s earphones and eyeglasses in the form of subtitles. The Japanese company explained that the translation appears only on a part of the retina to avoid “covering” the other person’s face with text. According to NEC, Tele Scouter could be used also in shopping malls. Connected to a camera and a face recognition program, the device will provide the salesperson with information about everything the customer has bought in the store over the years from a databank set up to reconstruct the purchasing history.

“Knowing each customer’s tastes could be an advantage for the store owner” said NEC head of development Takayuki Omino. “It is the first time that this technology has been used. A conversation can be held without interruptions”, Omino stated. The product should reach stores by end-2011.

New treatment for dry eyes syndrome.

The latest treatment for patients suffering from chronic dry eyes is serum therapy. A small amount of blood is drawn from the patient and centrifuged. Red blood cells are removed and the serum is extracted in a sterile environment. The serum will then dilute to a certain concentration and can be applied directly in the eyes to relieve the symptoms of dry eyes. Dry eyes is a complex eye condition that is caused by multiple factors. Generally eye doctors will prescribe artificial tears, and anti-inflammatory agents such as steroids, or cyclosporin to sooth the condition and help the dry eye patients achieve an improved lifestyle. Serum therapy goes one step beyond by using our own antibodies to suppress the inflammation of the ocular surface resulting from dry eyes syndrome. Though serum therapy is at its very early stage, we can foresee more popularity once certain obstacles are resolved. One of the biggest obstacles is its shelf life. They have an average shelf life of seven to ten days even under refrigeration. Which make it very inconvenience to patient using it.

Protect your children’s vision, have their eye examination yearly.

At Trinity Eye Care we tailor our services to both adults and children when it comes to eye exams. Plano families can satisfy all their eye care needs in one stop. Vision is a key element for learning and can cause delays and trouble if a child has problems seeing. Children often do not complain of poor vision so have them checked out regularly to ensure they are seeing clearly. When you visit Trinity Eye Care, we can see your entire family from young children to adults. Make an appointment today for your entire family!