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Dr. Hoopes Jr. Speaks at Utah Ophthalmology Society Meeting

By Hoopesvision on March 4, 2014

This past Friday, Dr. Phillip Hoopes Jr., surgeon at Hoopes Vision and medical director of EyeSurg of Utah, was a speaker at the Utah Ophthalmology Society’s yearly winter meeting. He presented the results of Hoopes Vision’s cataract laser comparison study to the many ophthalmologists in attendance.

Laser-assisted cataract surgery is the most exciting new development in cataract surgery in decades, promising unprecedented speed, precision, and safety. Hoopes Vision acquired the Alcon LenSx® cataract laser in October 2011, making us among the first surgical centers in the United States to do so. When we acquired the Optimedica Catalys™ Precision Laser System in July 2012, we became the first surgery center in the world to own multiple cataract laser platforms.

(L) The Optimedica Catalys (foreground) and Alcon LenSx cataract lasers; (R) Dr. Phillip C. Hoopes, Jr.

This placed Hoopes Vision in the unique position of being able to compare performance and results side-by-side, which we took advantage of by launching a comparison study of the two lasers. That study, which began in late 2012 and continued through most of last year, tracked the surgeons’ experiences as well as the patients’ outcomes for 100 laser-assisted cataract procedures wherein the study patients had surgery in one eye with the assistance of the LenSx, and the other eye using the Catalys. The results of the study, as presented by Dr. Hoopes Jr. this past weekend showed the differences in performance and results between the two lasers. This information will be invaluable when deciding which of these lasers our practice will keep.

Since the beginning, Hoopes Vision’s goal has always been to represent the newest, safest, most innovative vision correction technology, and to offer our patients that technology in the hands of experienced, caring surgeons and staff. Our early adoption of laser cataract surgery is just one of the many examples of that ongoing commitment.

Corneal Crosslinking Offers New Options For Keratoconus Patients

By Hoopesvision on January 21, 2014

Hundreds of thousands of Americans, and millions worldwide, suffer from keratoconus, a degenerative disorder of the eye in which the cornea (the clear tissue at the front of the eye, through which we see) becomes thin and distorted, changing from its natural round shape into the cone-like shape from which the condition gets its name. As the condition progresses and the cornea becomes increasingly thin and distorted, patients begin to experience vision problems such as glare from light sources, rapid changes in eyeglass prescription, and double or multiple images.

The extent to which keratoconus progresses, and the speed with which it does so, varies from patient to patient. In many cases, progress is slow enough, or stops early enough, that good vision can be maintained with glasses or contact lenses, often gas permeable hard contacts that physically help the cornea to hold its shape. Some patients require corneal ring inlays such as INTACS™, small clear plastic inserts that are surgically placed into the corneal tissue itself, to slow the progress of the disease. In other cases, however, the condition continues to progress to the point that good vision is no longer possible with corrective lenses, and in some rare cases it can progress to the point that the thinning corneal tissue becomes painful and at risk for rupture.

For decades, the final option to restore vision and comfort in these extreme cases was corneal transplantation, where the patient’s central cornea was surgically removed and replaced with an identically sized piece of tissue from a donor cornea, which was then sutured into place. Thousands of these procedures are performed every year, bringing improved vision and quality of life to keratoconus patients. However, the recovery can be long, there is a possibility that the patient’s body may reject the tissue graft (though the risk of rejection for a cornea transplant is very low compared to most other transplant procedures), and donor tissue is often in short supply.

Within the past decade or so – only since 2008 in the United States – a new technique has been gaining in popularity. Corneal collagen crosslinking, often abbreviated to CXL, is a non-surgical, non-invasive procedure in which riboflavin (Vitamin B2) and an ultraviolet light source are used to treat keratoconus. Application of riboflavin and subsequent exposure to UV light (in a controlled clinical environment) cause new links to form between the collagen strands in the cornea, strengthening the tissue and slowing or even halting the progression of keratoconus. Thus far, in patients who are good candidates for the procedure, CXL has proven to be very effective in treating patients who would otherwise have needed corneal transplants.

The Department of Clinical Research at Hoopes Vision’s facility in Draper, Utah has been taking part in a clinical trial of a new corneal crosslinking procedure, the KXL Accelerated Corneal Crosslinking System by Avedro. This system differs from earlier crosslinking systems in that the patient’s UV exposure time is only three minutes per eye, compared to 30 minutes or more per eye for previous systems, time during which the patient would be sitting or lying down with the eye held open. The far shorter treatment time leads to a more pleasant, comfortable patient experience, while still achieving the same remarkable result in slowing or stopping the progression of keratoconus. Hoopes Vision will shortly be offering this new treatment for keratoconus patients.

Eyelid Specialist Now Seeing Patients at Hoopes Vision

By Hoopesvision on November 8, 2013

Dr. Matheson Harris, a board-certified ophthalmologist and oculoplastic (ophthalmic plastic) surgeon, is now seeing patients at Hoopes Vision and performing surgery at our on-site surgery center, EyeSurg of Utah. He specializes in such surgeries as eyelid lifts, lacrimal (tear) gland procedures, and other reconstructive and cosmetic surgeries of the eye area. Dr. Harris will see patients at Hoopes Vision’s main location in Draper in addition to maintaining his current practices in Murray and St. George.

A native of Utah, Dr. Harris completed his undergraduate education first at Dixie College, then Southern Utah University. He went on to complete medical school at Penn State University, followed by an internship at the Milton S. Hershey Medical center and residency in Ophthalmology at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill. He then completed a two-year ASOPRS (American Society of Ophthalmic Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery) oculoplastic surgery fellowship at West Virginia University Eye Institute, with special training in orbital and lacrimal surgery, in addition to eyelid and facial reconstruction. He is also a member of the American Academy of Ophthalmology.

Dr Harris

Dr. Phillip C. Hoopes, CEO and Chief of Surgery at Hoopes Vision, said, “Many of the cataract and post-cataract patients we see are also in need of eyelid surgery. Many of these eyelid surgeries are not merely cosmetic but medically necessary, as the field of vision in elderly patients can often be obscured by drooping eyelids, affecting such daily activities as driving. To have a talented and experienced eyelid specialist such as Dr. Harris treating patients at Hoopes Vision and operating in our surgery center is a natural fit, and allows us to provide yet another service to our patients in the Salt Lake City area and throughout Utah.”

If you believe you or a family member may be in need of eyelid or other oculoplastic surgery, please call Hoopes Vision at (801) 568-0200 to schedule an appointment.

Lead Singer of Royal Bliss visits Hoopes Vision

By Hoopesvision on October 23, 2013

Being a Rock star is dangerous business! Royal Bliss’ lead singer, Neal Middleton, found this out the hard way while filming their new music video for “Cry Sister”. During the production, one of the decorative wings on his microphone stand caught him in the eye – which meant, he had to come see us. He was in for a follow up visit today and happy to report that he’s back to rockin’ out. You can see Neal, and the rest of his band play Friday night here in SLC at The Royal. And stay tuned for the release of their new music video – that bloody tear at the end…it’s real!

Royal Bliss



Royal Bliss mic

Optometric Education Seminar

By Hoopesvision on September 27, 2013

Last night, Hoopes Vision hosted over 80 Utah optometrists at a special Optometric Education Seminar. The doctors were invited to tour Hoopes Vision’s state-of-the-art facility before the meeting. The doctors then heard from five outstanding speakers; Dr. Phillip C. Hoopes, Sr., Jan Bonel (CEO Visiometrics), Shareef Mahdavi (President of SM2 Strategic), Dr. Robert P. Rivera, and Dr. Phillip C. Hoopes, Jr. The lectures discussed updates on current clinical trials that Hoopes Vision is involved in, such as; AcuFocus Corneal Inlay (KAMRA), Avedro corneal cross-linking, and Calhoun light adjustable lens, new technology available, and tips for creating a premium patient experience.

We are thrilled to have such great working relationships with our local optometrists and sincerely appreciate the trust they show by referring their patients to us for LASIK, laser cataract surgery, Implantable Collamer Lenses (ICL), corneal transplants, and other vision correction procedures. We are proud to be leaders in our field and thoroughly enjoy sharing our knowledge and experience with our colleagues.

If you would like more information on the clinical research being conducted at Hoopes Vision, please follow this link or call (801)988-7342. For any other questions, or to schedule an appointment, call (801)568-0200.

collage framed

UBM ultrasound measurement for ICL

By Hoopesvision on September 27, 2013

There are many different vision correction options available. When you come to Hoopes Vision for an evaluation, our doctors will help you determine which procedure is best for your unique situation. For some patients, an Implantable Collamer Lens (ICL) is the perfect solution. During this simple outpatient procedure, a soft, small lens is inserted into your eye. The lens works in combination with your natural lens to provide permanent, quality vision. Dr. Robert P. Rivera, a surgeon at Hoopes Vision, is one of the leading ICL surgeons in the world, having implanted more ICLs than any other surgeon in the United States. In this short video, Dr. Rivera discusses the importance of using proper ultrasound measurement of the eye before implanting an ICL.

There are many different vision correction options available. When you come to Hoopes Vision for an evaluation, our doctors will help you determine which procedure is best for your unique situation. For some patients, an Implantable Collamer Lens (ICL) is the perfect solution. During this simple outpatient procedure, a soft, small lens is inserted into your eye. The lens works in combination with your natural lens to provide permanent, quality vision. Dr. Robert P. Rivera, a surgeon at Hoopes Vision, is one of the leading ICL surgeons in the world, having implanted more ICLs than any other surgeon in the United States. In this short video, Dr. Rivera discusses the importance of using proper ultrasound measurement of the eye before implanting an ICL.

Protect Your Vision:Eye Safety for July Fireworks

By Hoopesvision on July 2, 2012

July is a great month in Utah! Celebrating both the 4th of July and the 24th of July means twice the number of barbecues, two good reasons to spend time with family and friends, and often double the opportunity to watch fireworks.

We hope this month will be filled with great memories for you and your family, and want to remind you that firework safety is an important part of making this month fun. Each Fourth of July period, fireworks are responsible for around 11,000 visits to the emergency room, and nearly 20 percent are for eye injuries.

Although most injuries result from firecrackers, bottle rockets and roman candles, many of the injuries (including eye injuries) come from smaller fare like sparklers. Because sparklers are marketed as fun for children, parents often underestimate the dangers associated with them. Sparklers can burn at well over 1000 degrees Fahrenheit, and because they are beautiful to watch, children often want to touch them, or hold them closer to their eye causing sparks or even a hot, burning sparkler to come in contact with their eye.
This time of year can be filled with exciting entertainment, and by keeping safety in mind when dealing with fireworks, you can ensure that it will be remembered for the many great memories rather than tragedy.

Important tips to remember when dealing with fireworks:

  • Always view fireworks from a safe distance.
  • Never have any portion of your body directly over a fireworks device when lighting the fuse. Move back to a safe distance immediately after lighting.
  • Be aware of your environment and don’t use fireworks in dry areas – check local laws for restrictions on where they can be used.
  • Always wear safety glasses when lighting or using fireworks.
  • Read and follow all safety instructions.
  • Have a working hose and first-aid kit handy should something go wrong.
  • Once you are done with your fireworks, douse them with plenty of water from a bucket or hose before discarding to prevent a trash fire.
  • Remember that all fireworks – even those marketed for children– can cause injury. Supervise all children around any firework use.

Annual Eye Exams: A Good Idea?

By Hoopesvision on February 16, 2012

Utah optometrist performs eye exam

Optometrist performing an eye exam

Recently, the Salt Lake Tribune published an article asking the rhetorical question of whether or not an annual doctor’s physical is worth the effort. Not to spoil the surprise for you, but the article found that, yes, a yearly checkup is well worth it, as it can lead to early detection of a wide variety of health problems.

The same holds true of annual eye exams: no matter what your age, no matter whether you’ve had LASIK, use glasses or contact lenses, or have naturally perfect vision, a yearly eye exam is definitely a great idea! There are several reasons this is true. For one, many people’s refractive error (i.e. the prescription in their glasses or contacts) can change gradually. For those people whose prescription is fluctuating, to compound those small changes by going several years between eye exams can result in headaches, eye strain and fatigue, and poor overall vision.

Another great reason to get an eye exam each year is that many chronic eye conditions, such as cataracts, glaucoma, macular degeneration, and diabetic retinopathy, can develop slowly – and visual symptoms are not an early warning sign. For example, glaucoma is one of the leading causes of blindness in the world, yet doctors call it “the sneak thief of sight” because by the time it manifests itself in the form of vision loss, the damage is irreversible. Meanwhile, a simple dilated eye exam and intraocular pressure check each year – both of which are parts of the standard eye exam – can detect glaucoma so that it can be managed before it robs the patient of their sight.

At Hoopes Vision, we specialize in the surgical correction of vision and generally do not perform routine eye exams. We do, however, believe in the value of regular yearly eye exams. That’s why one of the conditions of our free lifetime See Clearly Guarantee – the first of its kind in Utah – is that the patient must continue having annual exams after surgery. We believe the best way to care for your eyes is to establish a relationship with a qualified and experienced optometrist, one who examines your eyes each year and can help maintain your ocular health and good vision. The doctors at Hoopes Vision work closely with hundreds of experienced optometrists and ophthalmologists in Utah and throughout the US. If you already have a good eye doctor, great! If you are looking for one, please feel free to contact us or visit our website, where we have a list of affiliated eye doctors in Utah and surrounding areas.

Vision is an amazing thing. Our sight defines our relationship with the world in a way that is truly unique, and yet it can be a fragile thing. Preventative care, in the form of an annual eye exam with a qualified optometrist, is an easy and inexpensive measure that is worth the effort!

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