www.pacificvision.org     415.922.9500

Volume 13       July 23, 2008

Innovation. Leadership. Passion for Perfection.

  Eye Health

Blinking when you read or work on the computer is important to reduce eye strain, fatigue, and the feeling of dry eyes that you may get at the end of the day. Blinking spreads the tear film, our natural eye lubricant, over the eye surface, preventing it from drying out. Also, when we blink, the muscles around the tear ducts contract and that results in more moisture reaching the eye surface. Our average blink rate is 10 blinks per minute. However, when we are focused on something, the blink rate decreases to 3-4 times per minute. Infants blink 1-2 times per minute. It is thought that infants blink less often than adults because their lid opening is narrower and they sleep more. So, if you feel eye fatigue or dryness when you read or work on the computer, blink a few times, then close your eyes and count to sixty. Your eyes will feel better.

  What's new in vision correction procedures

Can monovision be done to improve reading vision years after the original LASIK or PRK? Absolutely. If you had laser vision correction in your 30's, and you are now in your 40's and need reading glasses, perhaps you can explore monovision to improve your reading vision. To help you decide if monovision is a good option for you, a contact lens can be tried to simulate the effect. If the vision is good with the contact lens, you can have monovision LASIK or PRK over your original procedure to improve your reading vision.

  Tech Corner

Traditionally, patients with glaucoma are monitored by intraocular pressure testing, visual field testing, and photographs of the optic nerve. A more sophisticated and in-depth method of analyzing the health of the optic nerve is now available. A high resolution scan, STRATUS OCT Optical Coherence Tomography, is a diagnostic imaging device for the back of the eye, providing detailed images of cell layers lining the retina and the optic nerve. The health of these cells, critical to good vision, can be monitored and the effect of treatment can be determined.

  Fun Eye Facts

Does it matter where the eyes are located on the head? Yes, it does! In some creatures, looking straight ahead protects them from danger. In others, it's what's coming at them from the sides that they need to avoid to survive. Iguanas are typical creatures that have to see around them to escape danger. That's why their eyes are positioned very close to the sides of the head. This gives them great peripheral field of vision, more than 180 degrees. Good enough to detect predators coming from each side. Interestingly, iguanas also have very advanced color vision. Even more so than humans. They have more cones and more color detectors than humans. Why? Because many of iguana's visual cues for breeding and territoriality are based on subtle color changes.

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