Brian Pothier Gets Traded

Brian Pothier was just traded to the Carolina Hurricanes.  In a news story that appeared in the News Observer he talks about the vision therapy he got that was a key to him getting back to continuing his career.

In March of this year ESPN did a story on the collaborative work that Susan Duram, OD and I did with a member of the Washington Capitals, Brian Pothier.  Brian had not played hockey for nearly 14 months secondary to his fourth concussion.  Sue had examined Brian and gotten him started with some glasses and asked me to see what else could be done.  After only a few vision therapy sessions he was working out again, went to the Hershey Bears to play a few games and ultimately contributed to the Washington Captials besting the NY Rangers in 7 games and losing to last years’ NHL Stanley Cup Champions, the Pittsburgh Penguins.  Brian is playing at as high or at even a higher level of play than before he left the game and he credits vision therapy with many of these gains.  His story has led to other players and members of the public finding out about what behavioral vision care can offer head injury sufferers.  Brian is to be commended for sharing his story with the public. Here is a link to the Washington Times story just prior to Brian’s return.

Early intervention for CI

Early intervention critically important in children’s vision problems

September 7, 2010 by D Fortenbacher, O.D.,FCOVD

When is it OK to “wait and see” if the problem goes away on it’s own?

What if your 6 year old child has been diagnosed with a binocular vision problem that appears to be interfering with her learning to read? You are seeing behaviors that look like she can’t concentrate on books. Her teacher is spotting some signs of trouble but can’t be sure that it is “her eyes”. You take her to an eye doctor who makes the diagnosis of a binocular vision problem called convergence insufficiency but dismisses treatment “for now” and opts for monitoring the problem. But, is it really ok to just wait and see?

As strange as it may sound, an outdated approach often recommended by many eye doctors when faced with a young patient (often 4-7 years old) diagnosed with certain forms of eye coordination problems, such as convergence insufficiency, is to simply monitor the condition and see if it goes away it’s own. In other words, no treatment is recommended.

In response to this and other vision problems in children, the University of Oregon Brain Development Lab has just produced this video on vision and the developing brain. See what the neuroscientists and the research is showing about the importance of early intervention.

Then check out the story of a mom (below) who wouldn’t accept ”NO” for an answer when told that her 6 year old daughter (with convergence insufficiency) was too young to be treated.

Find out how a persistent mom dealt with this problem with her own 6 year old daughter. Read the heartwarming and inspirational story from Paige Melendres in Albuquerque, who was not comfortable with the “wait and see” recommendation by her first doctor.  Her story can be found by clicking on  CI:The Private Eye Goes Public -Part 1 and scroll down to comment #8. Her story has a happy ending and good advice for parents who may have a child who is struggling.

Treatment for Lazy Eye

Older Children Can Benefit From Treatment For Childhood’s Most Common Eye Disorder; lazy eye!

 Surprising results from a nationwide clinical trial show that many children age seven through 17 with amblyopia (lazy eye) may benefit from treatments that are more commonly used on younger children.

http://www.nei.nih.gov/news/pressreleases/041105.asp

Mayo Clinic MN says best treatment for CI is

Mayo Clinic researchers, as part of a nine-site study, helped discover the best of three currently-used treatments for convergence insufficiency in children. Convergence refers to the natural ability of the eyes to focus and align while viewing objects up close. Children with convergence insufficiency tend to have blurred or double vision or headaches and corresponding issues in reading and concentrating, which ultimately impact learning. The findings, published today in the journal Archives of Ophthalmology, show children improve faster with structured therapy sessions in a doctor’s office, with reinforcement eye exercises at home.

www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/125351.php

NYTIMES SUNDAY MAGAZINE

Brian Dennis at a vision therapy session in Bethesda, Md.

By JUDITH WARNER
Published: March 10, 2010

If you’re the parent of a child who’s having trouble learning or behaving in school, you quickly find yourself confronted with a series of difficult choices.

You can do nothing — and watch your child flounder while teachers register their disapproval. Or you can get help, which generally means, first, an expensive and time-consuming evaluation, then more visits with more specialists, intensive tutoring, therapies, perhaps, or, as is often the case with attention issues, drugs.

For many parents — particularly the sorts of parents who are skeptical of mainstream medicine and of the intentions of what one mother once described to me as “the learning-disability industrial complex” — this experience is an exercise in frustration and alienation.

LINK TO REST OF THE ARTICLE…

Samantha Contis for The New York Times

Dr. Sue Barry Interview on NPR

Dr. Sue Barry tells how she achieved binocular vision after being told she was too old to do anything about her strabismus.  Sue, a neurobiologist, had been cross-eyed since early infancy. Though she had operations as a young child to correct her eyes’ appearance, they still sent conflicting messages to her brain. As a result, she viewed the world in a flat plane and had no stereoscopic 3-D vision

Sue did vision therapy at the age of 48 years old with a Fellow of the College of Optometrists in Vision Development. She achieved ‘stereovision’!

Click here to listen to this program with Terry Gross on NPR.

Sue’s book, Fixing My Gaze, will be released in paperback from Amazon.

Sue is a master at sharing her beautiful story on how her world has transformed since improving her vision.