Category Archives: Technology

Total Eye Care is a Google Glass Preferred Provider

What is Google Glass

Google Glass Thin Titanium FrameGoogle’s latest invention incorporates a video screen into an eyeglass frame; however, it is not an ordinary eyeglass frame. This pair of glasses interfaces with your cell phone allowing you to view emails, tweets, take pictures and videos, follow directions on a map, and many other cool features. Last year you may have heard how Google was inviting explorers to “test drive” the new Google Glass. google-glass-splitThe initial prototype did not provide a method to incorporate prescription ophthalmic lenses into the frame, making it of limited use for eyeglass wearers. In late 2014 Google announced Google Glass will also be available with ophthalmic lens options. Four titanium ophthalmic frames and four sunglass frames will be available as upgrades.

Total Eye Care is a Google Glass Preferred Provider

google-glass-sun-edgeThe Colleyville, Texas and the Keller, Texas Total Eye Care locations have completed the Google Glass Preferred Provider Training. Google Explorers can schedule an appointment online if they need an eye exam for either our Colleyville or Keller/Southlake location.

Using your Vision Benefit Plans

google-glass-curveGoogle glass explorers with VSP (Vision Service Plan) vision care benefits will be able to use their frame and lens benefit towards their new Google Glasses. Total Eye Care Colleyville and Total Eye Care Keller/Southlake locations are both VSP providers.

New Technology at Total Eye Care Predicts Glaucomatous Vision Loss

Pattern Electroretinography (PERG) Gives up to 8 Years of Advanced Warning

NOVA-ERGDeviceIncorporating the most advanced technology available in caring for our patients is important to the way we practice at Total Eye Care. The Diopsys® Pattern Electroretinograph is the newest addition to our suite of technology. The Pattern ERG (PERG) measures the signal strength of the retinal information being sent to the optic nerve. Studies show that a 10% decrease in this signal can be detected up to 8 years earlier than a 10% loss of nerve fibers detected by the scanning laser ophthalmoscope or optical coherence tomographer, thus allowing for a much earlier diagnosis and treatment.

Early detection and treatment of glaucoma is important due to the fact that nerve tissue cannot be regenerated. Twenty years ago, in the absence of a very high intra-ocular pressure, it was a common practice to wait until a visual field defect was present before initiating treatment. There is a significant amount of redundancy in the retinal nerve fibers, thus studies have shown that a patient must lose approximately 50% of the nerve fibers serving a given section before the loss of nerve fibers result in a detectable visual field defect. The scanning laser ophthalmoscopes changed all of that allowing us to detect earlier, more subtle changes in the retinal nerve fiber layer. Now patients are treated before visual field defects become apparent.

The Diopsys® Pattern Electroretinograph is the next step in early detection. The PERG will not replace the scanning laser ophthalmoscopes such as the Zeiss Cirrus Optical Coherence Tomographer (OCT) in the diagnosis of glaucoma; however, it gives us another valuable tool in the diagnosis and treatment of glaucoma.

FDA Approves First Bionic Eye

The FDA approved Second Sight’s “bionic” eye. While actually more of a retinal prosthesis, the implant is designed to assist patients with retinitis pigmentosa. The Argus II Retinal Prosthesis System has a resolution of 60 pixels. The device will not provide the HD type of vision that our eyes are capable of; however, more importantly, this technology will greatly aid a blind patient’s mobility and is a revolutionary step forward.

The system consists of a wireless retinal implant that rests on the retina. The patient will wear special glasses that see the image. The image will be sent to a visual processing unit that is worn on the patient’s hip. Once the data is processed it is sent back to the glasses which wirelessly transmit this data to the retinal implant. The implant electrically stimulates the photoreceptors simulating a coarse image. The patient learns how to interpret these light and dark images allowing them to navigate around and among obstacles.

The device was approved for use in Europe last year. Check out the video below from the European branch of the medical device company.

Say It With Your Eyes This Valentine’s Day

Some say the eyes are the window to your soul, but did you know they are also a window to your overall health?  Signs of high blood pressure and other conditions which can indicate an increased risk of heart disease and stroke can be seen with an eye exam.

 As February is American Heart Month, Drs. Richard Driscoll and Alycia Green of Total Eye Care are encouraging residents of Keller and Colleyville to take this opportunity to protect their vision and heart health by having an eye exam and an optomap retinal exam.

Dr. Driscoll comments: “Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in the United States; one in every three deaths is from heart disease and stroke, equal to 2,200 deaths per day.”*

Most people don’t realize that by visiting their optometrist for an eye examination, and in particular by having a simple optomap,  signs of hypertension can be detected, which if left untreated, can lead to heart problems and stroke.

An optomap is one of the most advanced technologies in eye care technology. It is the only technology currently available that provides an ultra-wide 82% view of the retina (the back of the eye) in one image – including the all-important periphery for successful diagnostics of both eye and non-eye related conditions and diseases.

“Viewing the retina during an eye examination allows  me to see the retinal blood vessels and detect any changes to their size and pattern,” Says Dr. Green. “Such changes can be indicative of changes in blood vessels in other parts of the body, such as the heart, and they highlight that further medical investigation and treatment may be required.”

To book an eye examination and optomap call 817.416.0333 or schedule an appointment online.

For more details on American Heart Month 2013 and further information about heart disease visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention – www.cdc.gov/features/heartmonth/

* Source: www.cdc.gov/features/heartmonth/ (online, 2013)

What’s on Doc’s iPad Part 2

Tablets are becoming an increasingly bigger part of how we entertain ourselves and even conduct business. I have found some of the most useful apps via recommendations of friends, colleagues, patients, and articles like this one. I hope you find a must have app or two. This article is the second of a series of articles on useful iPad apps. Part one of the iPad app series was published a few months ago.

Google Earth iPad App Logo

Google Earth is a great way to see what your iPad is capable of. Pick a destination on the globe and you can then view it in 3D. It doesn’t matter if your desired location is your childhood home or the Pyramids of Egypt, virtually the entire earth is available. The resolution is great. If you can imagine having the ability to fly, you get an idea of the viewing perspective available with Google Earth. Most popular destinations and cities are available to view in 3D. You can zoom in or out on your desired location and hover above it from any altitude. A fun and interesting way to kill a few hours. Google Earth is free.

When I was looking for an office productivity suite I first checked out the Apple products, Keynote, Pages and Numbers, however I wanted better Microsoft Office compatibility and settled on Quick Office Pro HD. It allows for basic formatting of Word, Powerpoint and Excel documents and overall works pretty well. It is clearly not a replacement for MS Office, but it takes care of most of your needs when advanced formatting is not required. What I do like best about it is that it integrates well with numerous cloud storage providers such as Google Drive, SugarSync, DropBox, and Evernote. Quick Office Pro HD is $14.99.

LastPass-Tab-BrowserLastPass is a password management tool and consequently a very important app for me. I use it multiple times a day and can not recommend it highly enough. When you set up your account, LastPass encrypts your passwords on your PC, and uploads the encrypted passwords to their servers, giving you an encrypted offsite back up of this critical information. You can then opt to only store encrypted passwords on your PC, further enhancing your passwords security. I usually use the desktop version which smoothly incorporates password management into your internet browser. The LastPass iPad app gives you access to all of your passwords via its own internet browser. LastPass uses its own browser since iPad’s Safari browser does not allow plugins or app integration. LastPass works very well and provides a safe, secure way to store  passwords and other confidential information. LastPass offers free and paid options.

desktoponliveiconOnlive Desktop gives you a virtual Microsoft Desktop. This is great when you need to make a 100% Microsoft compatible document. The only drawback is that it requires an internet connection. When you log in it looks like you just logged into a windows PC. You can share your OnLive files with your desktop PC or Mac by logging into files.onlive.com. I can’t believe this service is free.

itunesu ipad App LogoDo you want to learn about a particular subject? iTunes U has hundreds, possibly thousands, of free courses available on nearly every topic you could want. There are college level courses offered by major universities in addition to K-12 classes. There is also a section where private or non-profit organizations offer courses. The courses are very well done with class notes, audio and video material. iTunes U is an incredible resources. You can download the complete courses to your iPad for later use or pull them off the internet as needed. The iTunes U app and access to the library of classes is free.

skype_for_ipad_iconWho doesn’t love Skype? Do you remember seeing the Jetson’s as a kid? I remember seeing Jane Jetson talk on the video phone, and if she wasn’t “presentable” she would cover her face with a mask of herself while she talked. I thought how cool would it be to be able to see the person you are talking with on the phone, just like on the Jetsons. Skype now gives us that ability. The free version allows you to video-teleconference with one other person. If you want to make calls to ordinary telephones or video-teleconference with more than one person there is a modest monthly charge. Skype is a must have, making it easy to stay in touch with family members that are far away.

wordpress-iconThe Eye Doc Blog is powered by WordPress I often use this app to manage comments, check statistics, and read other blogs. If you do any blogging this is a great app. The WordPress app lets you manage your blogs, and functions as a good blog reader. This app is free.

Gmail iconIf you have a Gmail account then this app is a must have. I use it daily. It allows me to do everything on the app that I can do when I log into my Gmail account via the web.  This app is a freebie.

logmein-ios-app-icon-225x225Have you ever been at home and wished you could log into your office computer? LogMeIn let’s you do just that. Most often, you will navigate to the Logmein (Log Me In) website and gain remote access to your registered PCs. The iPad app is very well done and easy to use. It’s a handy app when there is something you must do or have access to on a remote PC. I do miss the lack of a mouse while using the app; however the advantage of using the app versus logging into Logmein via Safari is they have incorporated various finger gestures into the app to simulate mouse functionality. While not quite as efficient as using a mouse it will allow you to do what you need to do and beats having to drive to the office to get that must have file. Logmein is free for basic access to 6 PCs, a subscription service is available for more advanced options.

That will do it for now. Nine more iPad apps I have found helpful. I’m sure you have some winners as well. I would love to hear your recommendations on iPad Apps that you have found helpful. You can read part one of the iPad App series here.

What’s on Doc’s iPad Part 1

I used to be one of those that thought I didn’t need an iPad . . . OK few of us really NEED an iPad, but I’ve come to the conclusion that my iPad is a wonderfully handy tool and I use it almost daily. The iPad has not replaced my Kindle as my favorite way to read books. I find both the Kindle and the iPad helpful for different purposes.

Some of my favorite apps were recommendations from friends or articles I’ve read.  This article is the first of a series of three articles where I will review my favorite, most used iPad Apps.

The first app I installed was Evernote which is essentially a digital filing system. Evernote is a must have. It works across all platforms, allowing you to save something on your desktop PC and have it automatically sync with all of your other devices.

See the book on Amazon.com

It is excellent service and obviously not just for iPad users. When I was doing research for my book An Eye Doctor Answers: Explanations To Hundreds Of The Most Common Questions Patients Wish They Had Asked all of my data was saved to Evernote, thus no trees were harmed in the making of this book. Evernote has a free starter program and if you need more storage or expanded options there is a paid program.

SugarSync is another must have which syncs your saved data among all of your devices. SugarSync will automatically back up anything you designate and then allow it to be accessed by all of your devices. SugarSync has many other nice features, too many to list here; however, one of the features I particularly like is that it  automatically backs up the photos on your phone and makes them accessible to all of your devices. SugarSync  has a free 5 GB introductory account with paid accounts starting at $5 per month.

Many people. myself included, like to work with music in the background. Numerous apps do this. I like Pandora. It lets you enter a song or an artist and builds a play list with similar songs. When a song you like is played Pandora will then let you buy it within the app. Pandor has both free and paid options.

There are many apps that let you organize your Todo list. I like Remember The Milk. I use it frequently every day. It is free for use on your PC, however if you want to share your Todo list across mobile devices, such as an iPad, Kindle or your cell phone it’s $24 per year.

So far we’ve covered productivity apps. The iPad is a great device for entertainment though. If you hit writer’s block or need to blow off some steam, logging a little bit of air time flying a paper airplane or a foam biplane might loosen things up. Air Wings lets you sit in a five different airplanes or a quadracopter and dogfight with your friends or people all over the world. Games are quick, lasting only a couple of minutes. A word of caution though, it can be addictive. Air Wings is free. Upgrades are available for different airplanes and new maps.

Gmail has rapidly become one of the most popular cloud-based email providers. Gmail’s iPad app gives an excellent user experience and gives you fool access to your email, just like using the browser interface.  Given that email has become such an integral part of our work and personal life I this is easily one of my top 5 most used apps. The Gmail service, as well as the Gmail app are free. This app is easily a must have for all Gmail users.

Flipboard board is beautiful on the iPad. During set up you tell it what feeds you want it to include, such as Twitter, Facebook, or numerous other social media services. You can also include online news services such as CNN and FoxNews. Also available, is the option to include your interests or hobbies and it will go out and find relevant content. Flipboard then formats the data into your very own personalized news magazine. Flipboard is free.

Alarm CLock HD is just what it says, however it will wake you up in the morning by reading the news, your tweets or Facebook  or even wake you to music. It also has a flashlight mode should you need some light in the middle of the night. In addition to giving you the time, Alarm Clock HD also has the current temperature and weather for the day. Alarm Clock HD has a free ad-supported version or for $.99 you can go advertising free.

There you have it, in no particular order, nine of the apps on my iPad . I’ll post part two of this series very soon. Like I said, some of the best app recommendations I’ve received have been from people like you so I’d love to hear your thoughts. Let me know what iPad apps you can’t do without.

Amazon Fire a New Generation e-Reader is it the iPad Killer

I’m really excited to try out Amazon’s newest tablet computer the Amazon Fire. I love my Kindle Keyboard however it is not yet the perfect e-reader. In looking at the new specs for the Amazon Fire this new offering may come pretty close. Amazon has also updated it’s entire e-reader line with three other e-readers at much lower price points. The Kindle, the Kindle Touch and the Kindle Touch 3G all of which have no keyboard. The Kindle Fire incorporates a multi touch screen like the iPad, however it is the same overall size as the Kindle Keyboard , albeit slightly thicker with a color screen.

I dont’ really see the Kindle Fire as an iPad2 competitor. This model is really more of a Barnes and Noble Nook killer. The Fire will allow users to access basically everything Amazon has to offer in their store plus Android Apps, streaming music and movies, email and the Web. I do see Amazon coming out with a version that will directly compete with Apple’s iPad, possibly by Christmas 2012. In order to compete with the iPad, Amazon will have to add a few more capabilities such as 3G connectivity, front and rear facing cameras, more internal storage and a microphone. Some people don’t like the size of the iPad and adding those capabilities in both the 7″ and 10″ inch screen sizes will be a great combination.

Not everyone wants an iPad to read books on, frankly I find the iPad much to heavy and large to easily read a book. It would be nice however to be able  to read magazines in color and to easily visit a link in a blog or PDF, the Amazon Fire will allow us to do this very well.

So as soon as I get my hands on an Amazon Fire in November I’ll give a more complete review along with how it may or may not help patients with low vision. The Amazon Fire and the other new Kindle’s will ship on November 15. You can pre-order yours here.

Scanning Laser Technology Available for Patients With Glaucoma & Macular Degeneration

New technology now available at Total Eye Care allows us to scan a patient’s retina for glaucoma and macular degeneration, and the best part ….. it does it  WITHOUT DILATION! This new instrument is called the Zeiss Cirrus OCT and it is truly state of the art.

The Zeiss OCT uses infra-red light from a scanning laser to make a very high resolution, 3D image of the inside of your eye, much like that of an MRI. We can now identify retinal objects as small as 4 microns. So how small is 4 microns? A single sheet of 20 lb copy paper is 100 microns thick. This new technology allows us to detect glaucoma and macular degeneration much earlier as well as allowing us to detect and track subtle retinal changes.

Who is a candidate for this new technology? Anyone with a family or personal history of glaucoma, glaucoma suspect or macular degeneration should take advantage of this technology.

Call the Colleyville office at 817.416.0333 and let Rona or Kelsey know that you would like to take advantage of the new scanning laser technology right away.

Back to School Means Eye Exam Time for Children and Families

Total Eye Care and Optos partner in using scanning laser technology for children’s back to school eye exams.

COLLEYVILLE, TEXAS – August 1,

2010 – In conjunction with Back to School time, Dr. Richard Driscoll and Dr. Alycia Green, eye doctors at Total Eye Care in Keller and Colleyville, are working with Optos to launch a program aimed at educating parents about the importance of regular eye examinations for children. It is estimated that 80 percent of what children learn during their first 12 years is related to sight, yet unfortunately 86 percent of children in the U.S. start school without first having a comprehensive eye exam.

Pilot Study* Indicates Targeted Ophthalmoscopy With the Optomap® Retinal Exam Increases Ocular Disease Detection

Results from a pilot study conducted by doctors at the New England College of Optometry were recently presented at Optometry’s Meeting and the American Academy of Optometry.  In the study, subjects were examined using the methods of traditional ophthalmoscopy and optomap® assisted ophthalmoscopy, where an ultra-widefield retinal image from the Optos P200C guides the BIO fundus examination.

Forty subjects underwent non-mydriatic imaging with the P200C. Subjects were then dilated and underwent traditional ophthalmoscopy and optomap® assisted ophthalmoscopy. The traditional exam consisted of BIO and slit lamp biomicrosopy with precorneal lenses. optomap® assisted ophthalmoscopy was identical to traditional, with the exception that the doctor reviewed optomap® Images before performing their BIO examination. A masked Reader graded the optomap® Images of all subjects. A retinal specialist examined 28 of the 40 subjects and served as the gold standard. Continue reading