By Cary M Herzberg, OD, FIAO
My Optometric career has always been about the contacts. Since I was a teenager doing odd jobs in my Dad’s Chicago south side practice I have been fascinated about them. I guess it was fortunate for me that during my career in Optometry my profession saw a quantum leap in contact lens technologies, which fueled my further interest. I have also been fortunate to have met and been mentored by such great amazing doctors like Newton Wesley and Stuart Grant to name just a few. It has led me to patent lens designs and lead the National Eye Research Foundation and found International Academy of Orthokeratology. It has also led to an almost exclusively contact lens specialty practice.
It is with this background that I now listen to the banter from my young colleagues these days when they talk about not doing contact lenses in their practices due to poor margins and to much chair time. It seems at least in their experiences that contact lens specialization is probably the farthest from their minds. Are they correct? Have we witnessed another paradigm shift in our profession, which now makes contact lenses and even refraction itself not worthy of our time or effort? We’ll give you a compelling case for why contact lenses still should be part of the core of Optometric practice
This column will supply to you cases from the top fitters in our profession who also happen to be members of the International Academy of Orthokeratology which now has over two thousand members almost equally divided among Ophthalmologists and Optometrists on five continents. These practitioners are also the cream of the crop when it comes to specialty contact lens care on our planet today. Our first offering is from Bruce Williams who practices in Seattle Washington. In his practice Dr. Williams does all manner of contact applications including complex corneal reshaping and scleral lens designs. He is also the education chair for the IAO as well as a world renowned lecturer on specialty contact lens fitting. Here he demonstrates the art and fitting of a bi-toric corneal lens for patients with higher degrees of corneal astigmatism. Click to view: Case Presentation (2)
Cary M Herzberg, O.D., FIAO is president of the International Academy of Orthokeratology, a non-profit, independent organization that represents the interests and serves the needs of orthokeratologists worldwide; and president of American Academy of Orthokeratology & Myopia Control, which strives to present an open forum allowing our members to learn and interact with other members, and find a safe environment absent of the interests or agendas of any one person, group or company. The AAOMC, through our workshops, courses and fellowship program, allows our members to grow in competence and demonstrate this ability to their peers and the public.