Vision Safety & Staying Active With Keratoconus

May 26th, 2015

For those who are looking to get active this summer , but struggle with Keratoconus on a daily basis, there are several things you can do to protect your vision from getting worse and a few to stay active.

Keratoconus is a progressive eye condition that changes the shape of your cornea from spherical to cone shaped. This change causes many distortions in your vision. Below are a few tips to help you protect your vision and stay active during the summer months.

Vision Tips & Safety:

Always Wear Sunglasses or Eye Protection When Outside:

This is very important to remember not just in the summer months but all year around. The sun has very harmful rays which not only damage the eyes but can make your eye conditions worse if not protected. Research is showing that UV can increase free radicals which can lead to the cornea collagen breaking down further. It is important to wear sunglass eye wear that covers the sides as well as the front, this will ensure the most protection to your eyes.

Limit the Amount of Time Spent in Direct Sunlight:

If you work outside this may not be a feasible option, however if you don’t have to be in direct sunlight taking breaks throughout the day is a wise option. Some sunlight 20-30 minutes a day provides you the required amount of daily vitamin D, some sunlight is essential to staying healthy but remembering “everything in moderation” is always best.

Pay Attention to your eyes:

This seems like a common sense thing, but we often over look our vision until something goes considerable wrong. If you are noticing that you are squinting more or your contacts are becoming more uncomfortable, make an appointment to see your eye care provider sooner rather than later. If you find your desire to participate in activities is declining due to uncertainty with your vision, make an appointment to see your eye doctor.

It is important to educate ourselves and listen to our bodies when it comes to our health. Often we see the signs but we simply wave it off as being tired, dehydrated, or simply getting old when in fact it can be something much more serious. Don’t overlook signs or symptoms that might suggest your Keratoconus is progressing.

Below are a few signs you should never write off when it comes to your vision care:

• Increased blurred vision
• Frequent squinting
• Sudden eye pain
• Increasing discomfort while wearing contacts
• Increased and Frequent eye rubbing
• Sensitivity to Light
• Decreased night vision

If you see any changes in your vision, you should report it to your eye care professional right away to determine whether you need to be seen.

Watch Dr. Brian’s Summer Eye Health Tips Featured on the News to get yourself ready for an eye safe summer:

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Combining Your Keratoconus Treatments & How this Can Benefit You

May 5th, 2015

For those who have been dealing with Keratoconus, you have probably ran across a lot of information on modern Keratoconus treatments. While there are a lot of treatment options open for this condition the past tells another story. In the past the main treatment besides glasses or contact lenses was a cornea transplant, which was painful and had a long recovery time.

New advanced treatments for Keratoconus have allowed patients to experience improved vision with short and virtually pain-free recovery. The best results for those with Keratoconus are when multiple treatments are combined. Below are a few Keratoconus treatments that can now be combined and are showing great effectiveness for those in need of vision stabilization.

Holcomb C3-R ®

Holcomb C3-R ® has been available since 2003. This procedure helps improve the strength of the weakened cornea fibers. It is a non-invasive procedure that works over 4-16 weeks to improve strengthen the cornea fibers. The Holcomb C3-R ® can be done on the same day as several other treatments like Intacs®, CK, or even PRK.

Intacs®

Intacs® is a procedure in which a tiny crescent shaped lens inserts are placed the layer of the cornea to help improve the shape and decrease the irregular cornea shape. This procedure can be done in combination with the Holcomb C3-R ® providing improvement in your quality of vision. It only takes 7 minutes to complete and it is showing great promise in the treatment of Keratoconus.

CK or Conductive Keratoplasty

CK uses radio frequency to reshape the cornea. This treatment improves the curves of the cornea, which can improve the overall vision. There is little to no pain during the procedure and it only takes around 3 minutes to complete. This treatment can be combined with the Holcomb C3-R ® or Intacs® and can provide improved outcome for reducing high amounts of astigmatism.
Benefits of Combining Treatments:

• Improved Vision Outcomes
• Less Recovery Time – only 1 day of procedures, rather than multiple days
• Faster Results

Watch Kristen Discuss Her Results of Having Holcomb C3-R®, Intacs® and CK Treatments

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Is Your Vision Becoming Worse at Night?

April 21st, 2015

Discover your treatment options
Decreased night vision is a common symptom, without treatment is can be a great hindrance. While you should always have your eyes checked when there is change in your vision, sometimes patients may over look vision changes and chalk it up to the aging process. It is important to not overlook vision changes, especially if your vision is worsening at night.

While you are more susceptible to eye problems as you get older, age is may not be the reason for your vision changes. In fact, those who go untreated can have more severe loss of vision and treatment options may be limited because of a delay in treatment. Early detection of eye conditions can help prevent vision loss.

Below are other signs to report to your eye care professional:

• Frequent prescription changes
• Blurred vision
• Double vision
• Increased sensitivity to Light
• Frequent headaches
• Eye Pain
• Straining/Squinting

There are in fact several conditions that can cause decreased night vision. However the most common cause is a progressive condition called Keratoconus. Keratoconus is a misshapen cornea which causes a distortion in the view of the patient. Over time the cornea bulges into a cone shape instead of a sphere due to the thinning and weakening of the cornea over time.

A Few signs and Symptoms of Keratoconus:
• Frequent prescription changes
• Frequent eye rubbing
• Eye pain
• Blurred/Double Vision
• Straining/Squinting
• Decreased night vision

Keratoconus can be a shocking diagnosis but with early detection and proper treatment you can have your vision preserved. There are several treatment options which have show very positive results in the treatment of Keratoconus including the Holcomb C3-R ®, INTACS, and CK to name a few.
Watch revolutionary Keratoconus night blindness treatment by Dr. Brian featured on The Doctors:

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How Can Keratoconus Affect Your Pitch This Baseball Season?

April 7th, 2015

Baseball season is back in full swing and for those who suffer from Keratoconus this season maybe a struggle for some who have already been diagnosed and some who might not even know they are suffering.

In the past, the diagnosis of Keratoconus had been a difficult one for eye doctors to diagnose. However, in recent years with modern equipment and increased training, more doctors are able to diagnose the condition sooner. The sooner a patient is diagnosed the better the prognosis for Keratoconus treatment and improving vision.

Below you will find some signs & symptoms of Keratoconus:

• Frequent changes in prescriptions
• Frequent eye rubbing
• Frequent squinting
• Blurred/Double Vision
• Poor night vision
• Sensitivity to light
• Halos/glares around lights

Blurred vision can be a problem if you are playing baseball. Your pitch depends on your ability to aim at the plate. Blurred vision can distort your view of the plate and cause you to struggle seeing when aiming for your target. Keratoconus can hinder your depth perception causing you to throw the ball to short or too far over the base when pitching.

In addition, if you are up to bat, blurred vision can cause you to misjudge when to swing your bat.
Your sight is a great treasure and reporting any changes, no matter how minor, to your eye care professional will help you in finding available treatment options.

Watch Tommy Pham of the Cardinals baseball team discuss his experience with Keratoconus treatments:

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A New Frontier for Keratoconus Treatment

February 3rd, 2015

The Holcomb C3-R ® is a procedure that uses a solution made of natural vitamins placed directly on the cornea to improve and strengthen the fibers of the cornea. This treatment helps to stabilize the cornea and slow/halt the progressive nature of this vision deteriorating condition. Full results of the treatment takes between 4 -16 weeks.

In combination with other treatments the Holcomb C3-R ® has the ability to dramatically improve a patient’s vision and improve their lives. In the past, many had to turn to corneal transplants as a treatment for Keratoconus. That procedure was risky, invasive, painful and had a long recovery time.

Now with improvements in technology, treatment options have become non-invasive or at the most minimally invasive. These advanced Keratoconus procedures have shorter than ever recovery time, usually a period of hours or days. Some combinations of treatments can be done the same day with no increases in recovery time.

The Procedure:

During the Holcomb C3-R ® procedure your eyes are numbed with eye drops and a proprietary solution developed by Dr. Brian Boxer Wachler in 2003 is applied to the cornea. Then the patient sits under a carefully calibrated UV light for 30 minutes, this activates the solution. The propriety eye drop solution is made with a natural vitamin called Riboflavin along with other ingredients which encourage the collagen within the cornea to build new crosslinks. These crosslinks is what strengthens the cornea. In some cases, this procedure has the added benefit of providing slight flatting of the cornea shape.

The procedure take about 30 minutes and is performed.

INTACS:

Intacs is often used in combination with the Holcomb C3-R ® to treat all stages of Keratoconus. While the Holcomb C3-R ® slightly changes the shape of the cornea, Intacs are used to help mold the cornea shape more. It uses tiny crescent shape lens inserts to help improve the cornea of the patient. When used in combination with the Holcomb C3-R ® it can improve the patient’s vision.

The Intacs procedure takes around 10 minutes and most patients report that the procedure was easier than a trip to the dentist. Vision of the patient improves almost instantly. Giving them the ability to have a better quality of vision with contacts or glasses.

Symptoms of Keratoconus:

It generally takes a while to be diagnosed with Keratoconus but if you have a family history of this condition or any of the below symptoms you should notify your eye care professional for further testing.

 Frequent changes in prescription
 Frequent eye rubbing
 Double vision
 Eye pain
 Halos or glares around the lights
 Light sensitivity

Dr. Brian discusses the testing used to diagnosed Keratoconus

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Finding the Right Keratoconus Treatment

January 27th, 2015

Keratoconus is a progressive condition that causes the patient to lose their vision slowly over time. Keratoconus causes the sphere shaped cornea to turn cone shaped. This causes the images that a patient sees to become distorted and glasses or contacts often will not help improve vision over time.

In the past many patients have had to wait for their vision to be nearly lost and then a cornea transplant was recommended to replace the damaged one. Until 1999, this was the main treatment for Keratoconus, which was invasive and had a long recovery time. Today Keratoconus treatments are available to slow, stop, and in some cases reverse the damage from Keratoconus.

Today’s Modern Keratoconus Treatments:

Over the past two decade many ophthalmologists have worked hard to find new ways to treat Keratoconus. Several treatments have excellent results in treating this condition. A few are listed below.

The Holcomb C3-R ®:

The Holcomb C3-R ® or Corneal Collagen Crosslinking with Riboflavin is a non-invasive treatment designed to strengthen the corneal fibers to help restore the shop of their cornea. Dr. Brian S. Boxer Wachler developed this treatment in 2003 and has revolutionized Keratoconus management.

The Holcomb C3-R ® is performed in the comfort of Dr. Brian’s office and is comfortable to undergo with recovery in as little as a few hours. Additionally the Holcomb C3-R ® can be performed in combination with other advanced treatments to further enhance and improve vision, procedures such as Intacs.

Intacs:

Intacs are tiny crescent shaped lens inserts that are placed in the layers of the cornea lens to reshape the cornea. It provides the patient with almost instant improved quality of vision and when performed with the Holcomb C3-R ® can benefit patients with moderate to severe Keratoconus.

Intacs can be done within 10 minutes and performed the same day as the Holcomb C3-R ® to reduce the need for repeat procedures dates and extended recovery times.

CK- Conductive Keratoplasty:

CK also known as Conductive Keatoplasty can be combined with both Intacs and the Holcomb C3-R ® to help reshape the cornea. Often used to reduce high levels of astigmatism, it can be effective in the treatment of Keratoconus for further enhancement of vision.

CK uses a radiofrequency probe, which gently helps reshape the cornea. This procedure can also be performed in combination with other treatments in the office. CK has little recovery time and little to no pain.

Advancements in Keratoconus treatments give patient’s peace of mind and relief to know there is another option instead of the dreaded and painful cornea transplant.

Watch Kristen discuss her happiness with Holcomb C3-R ®, Intacs, and CK – 3 years after treatment

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Tips for Family Vision Care This Year

January 20th, 2015

Vision care should be a priority to your family especially if you have a family history of eye problems or conditions like elevated blood pressure, or Diabetes. Several conditions affect the eyes and can lead to severe vision loss or eye care issues.

Be sure to find an eye care professional that you are comfortable speaking with, and that communicates well with you and your family. This will help your family understand your eye care conditions and find the right treatments for your family.

Below are a couple tips to help you:

Discovering Vision Problems in Your Children:

There are several signs of vision problems in children. Knowing what they are and how to spot them is important. If they are having difficulty seeing it will affect every part of their life including social, and academic as well.

Below are some common signs it is time to see the eye doctor:

 Eye Strain – (in children straining to see the television or board at school)
 Blurred Vision
 Double Vision
 Poor night vision
 Frequent Eye rubbing
 Eye Pain

Family History of Eye Conditions:

If you have a family a family history of eye conditions such as Cataracts, Glaucoma, Keratoconus, or even Diabetes type 1 or 2 you should go to the eye doctor on a regular basis. Annual eye exams are an important part of a healthy lifestyle. Early detection of eye conditions opens up more options when it comes to treatments.

For more information on symptoms of common eye conditions, or treatment option ask your eye care professionals or visit www.BoxerWachler.com

Dr. Brian’s shares his tip on why eye rubbing can be dangerous to your eye health:

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Top 3 Reasons to Use Intacs for Keratoconus Treatment

December 29th, 2014

Keratoconus vision correction procedures have advanced over the last decade. There are several procedures that can help improve your overall quality of vision quickly and with little to no pain. Intacs is a procedure that can help you with a condition called Keratoconus and when it is combined with other procedure such as the Holcomb C3-R ® it can improve your quality of vision even more.

Below are the top 3 reasons to use Intacs for Treatment of Keratoconus:

Support in reshaping your cornea

Keratoconus causes the cornea to become misshaped, or distorted. The cornea becomes more cone shaped, which makes vision less clear and contacts more difficult to wear. Intacs are in the layers of the cornea and help to reshape your cornea to improve your overall quality of vision by reducing the irregular cone shape. While this treatment doesn’t cure the condition it can significantly improve quality vision with glasses or contacts by reducing distortions and prescription.

Needs little maintenance

The Intacs needs little maintenance. Once it is placed in the cornea layers the tiny insert is barely felt, and doesn’t need any maintenance from the patient. It can be removed easily if you need a prescription change, or for any other reason.

Can be combined with other treatments

The Intacs can be combined with other Keratoconus treatments to maximize the vision improvement. The Intacs procedure takes merely 7 minutes or less and other procedures can be combined with them, such as the Holcomb C3-R ®.

Watch Ian’s story of night vision improvement with Intacs

Find out today if Intacs is right for you call 310-594-5210 or email info@boxerwachler.com

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How Will INTACS Help My Keratoconus?

September 22nd, 2014

Before the 1990’s there was little available in regard to treatment options for Keratoconus. Many patients had to deal with the debilitating effects of Keratoconus until they needed a Corneal Transplant. Now there are several new treatments that are improving the overall effects of Keratoconus. INTACS have been available to patients for the treatment of Keratoconus since 1999. This treatment can also assist patients with other eye conditions such as Myopia.

Below are benefits of INTACS for Keratoconus:

Simple, out-patient procedure.
Less invasive then a corneal transplant
Provides you with Improved Quality of Vision
Most Commonly takes less than 15 minutes
Removable if technology changes, but designed to remain in the eye for a lifetime

For most people, the use of INTACS for Keratoconus is a great treatment for correcting their quality of vision and comfort in glasses and contacts. The INTACS are not noticeable within the eye and do not require maintenance once in place. If this is something you might be interested, in speak with your eye care professional for more information.

Procedure & Recovery:

15-30 min. total operative time (1 or 2 eyes)
Little to no recovery time
Little to no pain
Almost immediate improvement
Can be combined with other eye care procedures

There are several advantages including quicker and little to no pain with recovery. INTACS can take the place of your glasses or contact lenses, however most commonly assists in the comfort of these types of correction. They help to reshape the eye’s cornea to help improve your overall quality of vision.

Dr. Brian Boxer Wachler, MD is a renowned eye surgeon specializing in Keratoconus Treatments, as well as other vision correction procedures.

Watch how a 12 year old boy had his vision restored and saved by INTACS. He was saved from having to undergo the invasive cornea transplant:

http://youtu.be/8TEe-RPNaWM

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Keratoconus Options: Treatment Success

September 8th, 2014

For those who have had family members or close friends that were diagnosed with Keratoconus, treatment options probably didn’t sound very promising at that time. With new advancements in the treatment of Keratoconus, success is a common place. In fact over 90% of all patients with Keratoconus are now receiving successful treatments for their Keratoconus, and may have improved overall vision, WITHOUT the need to undergo a painful corneal transplant!

Keratoconus is a progressive eye disease that changes the shape of your cornea from circular to cone shaped over time. These distortions cause your vision to decrease and lower the quality of your vision, as well as your ability to complete your daily life activities. In past years there were only a few treatments available. A diagnosis of Keratoconus meant that you would eventually require a corneal transplant. Now only 5% of patients with Keratoconus eventually need a corneal transplant, and these cases are often due to additional circumstances beyond the Keratoconus diagnosis.

Below are a couple of the New Treatments for Keratoconus:

Holcomb C3-R® Crosslinking System

This treatment was developed over a decade ago and has made remarkable strides in successful Keratoconus treatment. This is a totally non-invasive treatment that only takes about 30 minutes to perform. It strengthens the cornea, reducing visual distortions, fluctuations, and can even occasionally improve overall vision.

INTACS

INTACS is another great treatment for those with Keratoconus that uses tiny segments which are placed in the cornea and reduce the steepness to create a more normal shape. This treatment requires little maintenance and the segments are intended to be left in the eye for a lifetime. The INTACS can be done in combination with the Holcomb C3-R ® to provide better results and is great for those with Keratoconus.

These amazing new treatments have restored hope in the lives of thousands of patients over the past decade. Knowing that there are several new treatment options out there to help you regain your vision should add new hope to your treatment’s success.

Listen to Tom’s story of avoiding a cornea transplant. Tom says “run, don’t walk to see Dr. Brian”

http://youtu.be/8-vq7rKMFhM

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