By Hoopesvision on July 29, 2009
If you have noticed that you are holding the menu a little farther away, or have finally had to break down and buy a pair of dime store readers or even bifocals — you are not alone. Millions are now reaching the magic age of 40 and find their near vision failing. This is a condition that eventually everyone around age 40 to 45 and beyond encounters. According to Dr. Phillip C. Hoopes, Jr., a fellowship trained corneal surgeon and cataract surgeon, near and intermediate vision result from the action of the focusing muscle in the eye, called the ciliary muscle. This muscle changes the shape and thus the focus of the natural lens. Over time, however, the natural lens becomes larger and harder. This prevents your lens from focusing as it once did and is why you may need glasses or bifocals to read as you get older.
This inability to focus or accommodate is called presbyopia and its earliest symptom is difficulty seeing things up close. With age, your lens will continue to harden, eventually turning cloudy as it becomes a cataract. It is a natural process that occurs in most everyone over 60 years of age. Eventually, cataracts will need to be removed if you want to see better and be able to pass the drivers test. Until recently, there was little one could do for presbyopia other than pick out a nice pair of bifocals or stock New Solutions for Over 40 Vision: Hoopes Vision Surgeons Lead the Way High-tech Lens Implants Offer a Range of Vision — From Near to Far up on reading glasses. Patients replacing the natural lens with a lens implant had to choose between correcting both eyes for sharp distance vision and wearing reading glasses to see anything up close, or to have one eye corrected for distance and the other corrected for near vision (commonly referred to as mono-vision).
Medical researchers have long been eager to create a lens implant that could improve not only distance vision, but also near vision as well. A revolutionary new group of “multifocal” intraocular lenses are fi nally making this a reality by potentially providing patients the freedom of seeing at most distances without glasses. These lenses are surgically implanted in a procedure nearly identical to traditional cataract surgery where the natural crystalline lens is removed and replaced with one of these new hi-tech lenses. FDA approved lenses like ReSTOR®, Re- Zoom™, Tecnis multifocal™ and crystalens® are offering a dramatic advantage for people with presbyopia and cataracts, fi nally creating the possibility of getting rid of glasses and contact lenses all together.
For example, during U.S. clinical trials with the Re- STOR® lens implants:
• 95 percent were so satisfied they would have the procedure again
• 94 percent said they could drive and read the paper without corrective eye wear
• 80 percent of patients reported that they no longer needed glasses or contacts to see at all distances.
Results with Tecnis multifocal ™, ReZoom™ and crystalens ® are similar. Imagine not having to wear any corrective lenses for computer work, reading or to drive! The doctors at Hoopes Vision have been providing this technology to their patients for over 5 years and are among the most experienced implant surgeons in the country.
Candidates for these lenses include anyone who has healthy eyes and is dependent on reading glasses or bifocals. Although these lenses are a breakthrough technology for cataract patients, it is not necessary to wait for cataract surgery to qualify as a candidate for these lenses. There are several types of lenses available, and each works in a slightly different way with certain distinct benefi ts associated with them. It is important when considering these new implants to find a doctor who is familiar with and has had experience with each of them, so the right lens may be chosen for your unique vision and lifestyle. The surgeons at Hoopes Vision have been trained, certified, and have extensive experience using all of the major multifocal lens options available to date.
To learn more about how you might benefi t from these lenses, please call Hoopes Vision at (801)568-0200, or visit their website at www. hoopesvision.com
By Hoopesvision on July 10, 2009
The most important decisions to be made when considering LASIK surgery involve questions of safety, experience and technology, but the cost of the procedure can also be an important issue. In today’s economy, many had predicted that LASIK surgery would see a decrease in volume. Instead, it turns out to be a bit more complicated.
Certainly, there are many discount centers (mainly larger corporate owned centers) that have struggled, but some have actually seen an increase in the number of patients that have come through their doors. Hoopes Vision has been among those fortunate enough to see more patients each year. Dr. Phillip Hoopes, founder of Hoopes Vision, attributes their success to their commitment to providing the best and safest technology and premium service to their patients at all times. “In harder economic times, many places will look to find ways to cut expenses in order to turn a profit. For us, the best technology and results are always paramount, and I think people notice that and, in turn, feel they can trust us with something as valuable as their sight. People are certainly still having surgery in these times, and recognize it as an investment as opposed to a simple cost. However, they want to make sure they are getting the best vision possible for their investment, and want to minimize risk and maximize outcome more than they want to find discount prices.” Even so, he notes that more people are taking advantage of financing options. “I think they figure if they can have the newest technology now, and not spend a penny more in the long run, why not spread the payments out over two years, and keep a little more on hand for ‘what if’ type scenarios.” There is a lot of confusion about price, as corporate owned LASIK centers try to shift the focus from the best and safest procedure to the cheapest. It is important to realize that LASIK surgery is an investment that will impact your vision for the rest of your life. However, there are ways you can ensure you are getting the best procedure and getting the most for your money.
LASIK UNDER $999:
WHAT’S THE CATCH?
Many people considering LASIK are tempted by surgeons and surgery centers that offer the procedure at an unbelievably low price. Unfortunately, it is usually true in life that you get what you pay for. Deals offering LASIK for $299 to $999 per eye are usually a bait-and-switch marketing ploy utilizing older technology. Even these cheaper places seem to realize that other procedures and lasers are better, and will try to talk you into upgrading to a better, yet still older, laser technology at a much higher price. Very few patients ever pay those low advertised prices as they learn their prescription is too high or severe to qualify for the cheaper price. Also, be aware of hidden or add-on charges such as lifetime guarantees (most of these discount centers won’t be around long enough), enhancements and, usually unnecessary, tear duct plugs. Be sure to ask questions. If calling on an advertised price, be sure to ask what the full range of prices are, and what the average price is. Ask if the center uses IntraLase™. It is currently the safest method for performing LASIK surgery. With only one set of eyes, is any deal worth more risk? Ask what laser or lasers are used for the procedure, and why they use it, how long they have had it (is it older technology), and if they have compared outcomes or have experience with other lasers.
TAX FREE, FLEX
Fortunately, there are several ways to get the most for your money. One of the best ways, if it is offered through your employer, is a medical Flexible Spending Account (FSA) or “Cafeteria Plan.” An FSA is a benefit developed to provide you choices with coverage and spending on health care including laser vision correction. Employers allow you to set aside a certain amount of money to be used for approved medical expenses. A portion of the full amount is withdrawn from each paycheck before taxes, which means using this money for medical expenses could save you 30% or more (depending on your tax bracket) verses paying out-of-pocket after taxes have been taken out. The full amount can usually be used as soon as the benefit period starts, so it works like a tax-free, no-interest payment plan.
No interest finance plans can be another very good way to help get the most from your money. Hoopes Vision currently offers up to 24 month 0% interest financing. This keeps the payments down while not paying a single cent more than you would if you brought in all the cash up-front. If you are simply looking for the lowest monthly payment, consider financing for a longer period. Hoopes vision also offers financing up to 60 months. You pay interest, but the payments are much smaller.
Of course, the bottom line is there are many options out there. The most important considerations are your safety and vision. If you find the place where you feel most comfortable, a little more money may be worth it. Conversely, an inexpensive place may not be worth any price.
By Hoopesvision on July 9, 2009
Refractive surgery has evolved since it’s beginning in the 1970’s. While early techniques laid the foundation for more modern techniques, today’s methods are safer, with improved visual outcomes.
Radial Keratotomy (RK)
RK corrected low degrees of myopia by making small spoke-like incisions in the cornea. Discovered accidentally in 1971 by a Russian doctor who observed a patient’s vision improved after glass from an accident serendipitously cut a similar pattern. RK was effective, but sometimes inaccurate, and often caused halo and glare. No longer used, RK has been replaced by modern laser surgery.
Photorefractive Keratotomy (PRK)
Still commonly used and a good alternative to LASIK for some patients. PRK uses an excimer laser to reshape the cornea. It differs from LASIK in that PRK takes place on the surface of the cornea after the epithelium (outer layer of cells) is removed. The reshaping options are the same as for LASIK. The advantage of PRK is that there is no corneal flap that must heal. The disadvantages are a longer visual recovery time and possible discomfort for several days.
LASIK (Laser Assisted In-Situ Keratomileusis)
Soon after PRK was approved, doctors discovered that faster recovery and greater patient comfort could be attained by creating a thin flap of the outer layers of the cornea using a handheld oscillating razor blade microkeratome, treating the inner layers with a laser, and returning the flap to its original position where it would serve as a natural bandage for the eye.
This is the newest and safest method of performing LASIK, where the flap is created using a high-precision and safe computer-guided laser called IntraLase™. As of 2008, Hoopes Vision surgeons are the second highest volume IntraLase™ providers in the United States.
There are three main ways a laser can reshape the cornea.
1. Traditional, Standard Treatment: reshapes the cornea for nearsightedness, farsightedness and astigmatism (lower order aberrations) using roughly the same measurements used for glasses or contacts.
2. Wavefront Guided Treatment: treats the same problems as a traditional treatment, plus measures and treats higher order aberrations. A map is made by measuring thousands of unique points of each patient’s vision. This measures distortions that glasses and contacts do not correct. A wavefront guided treatment has a possibility of reducing halo and glare in some patients and may sharpen vision beyond what glasses and contacts can.
3. Wavefront Optimized Treatment: creates a treatment pattern that maintains the eye’s round, natural curve and helps produce crisp, sharp vision with the possibility of less night time halo and glare after surgery.
Hoopes Vision was the first Utah LASIK center able to perform all 3 types of treatments. To determine which option is best for you, please call (801)568-0200 for a complimentary LASIK exam, or ask for a complimentary LASIK book written by Dr. Hoopes and Dr. Hoopes, Jr., which will explain more options in greater detail.
By Hoopesvision on July 2, 2009
Hoopes Vision launched the official start of our video contest yesterday. Dr. Hoopes Jr. made a brief appearance on Good Things Utah to announce the official start. People are encouraged to submit a short video about the subject “Why I want LASIK surgery” or “Why I want LASIK surgery from Hoopes Vision”. Entries to the LASIK contest will be made though the Hoopes Lasik contest Youtube group. you must first register at www.hooopeslasikcontest.com. There will be two winners: one humorous lasik video and one serious lasik video will be chosen. We know every video requires some work on your part, so everyone who submits a video will be able to download a coupon for $1000 off bilateral IntraLASIK surgery. ($500 off per eye – may not be combined with other discounts or offers, etc.).
We are excited to see that there has already been several people interested in this contest and expect to see some great videos soon. If you have any questions about the contest or about LASIK surgery, please call our office at 801.568.0200.