It remains important for us to look to continued research showing that there is no current substitute for in-person eye care, particularly as it relates to the health of the eye.
Jason J. Nichols, OD, MPH, PhD
Simple Contacts Secures $16 million
Simple Contacts announced $16 million in funding from Waypoint Capital Partners, with participation from returning investors Goodwater Capital, Steven Cohen, executives from Flatiron Health, and a number of other ophthalmologists. The new round brings Simple Contacts’ total funding to $26 million.
Johnson & Johnson Vision Launches New Corporate Website
Johnson & Johnson Vision announced the U.S. launch of JJVision.com, a new online presence that serves as the company's digital front door and connects its established online properties for consumers and eyecare professionals, according to the company.
Through rich video content, high-resolution images, infographics, and downloadable materials, the newly-launched JJVision.com highlights innovation (e.g., a short video on contact lens innovation tells the story of eyelid stabilization), products and services (e.g., an overview of J&J Vision's current product portfolio, featuring links to acuvue.com, jnjvisionpro.com, surgical.jnjvision.com, and sightbox.com), education (e.g., an eye health checklist with tips for consumers), and caring and giving (e.g., featured videos on two signature initiatives—Cure Blindness and Sight for Kids—as well as links to request charitable grants).
Sightbox Joins Health Care Alliance for Patient Safety
Sightbox announced that it has joined the Health Care Alliance for Patient Safety. The mission of the alliance is to advocate for solutions to advance patient eye health, vision care, and safety as well as elevate the practitioner-patient relationship.
The Cooper Companies Announces Executive Management Changes
The Cooper Companies, Inc. announced the following key management changes:
Holly Sheffield has been appointed executive vice president and chief strategy officer of The Cooper Companies, effective June 4, 2018. In this position, she will be responsible for corporate strategy, business development, and global human resources with a strong focus on driving long-term shareholder value. She will report directly to Albert White, president and CEO. Ms. Sheffield joined Cooper from UBS Securities LLC where she was global head of Medical Technology within the firm’s Healthcare Banking group.
In addition, Dr. Robert Auerbach, executive vice president, chief strategy officer, and chief medical officer of CooperSurgical, was promoted to president of CooperSurgical, effective April 17, 2018. In his new role, he is responsible for CooperSurgical’s worldwide business, reporting directly to Albert White. Dr. Auerbach has held a number of leadership roles since joining CooperSurgical in 2005.
Joseph C. Mallinger, OD, MBA, Receives AOA’s Highest Service Award
Dr. Joseph Mallinger, senior vice president of Professional Relations for Healthy Eyes Advantage (HEA) and previously the president & CEO of Vision West (VWI), will receive the 2018 American Optometric Association’s (AOA’s) Distinguished Service Award. The presentation will take place during Optometry’s Annual Meeting in Denver in June.
His long list of contributions to the optometric profession includes serving as president of the San Diego County Optometric Society, president of the California Optometric Association (COA), president of the COA’s Public Vision League, secretary treasurer of the Marshall B. Ketchum University (SCCO) Board of Trustees, and current president of Optometry Cares, the AOA’s charitable foundation.
During his term as president of the COA in 1994 and the year following, he played a significant part on behalf of optometry in California when the efforts of his board empowered properly licensed ODs in California to diagnose and treat eye disease with therapeutic pharmaceutical agents.
Optovue Announces Retirement of Prominent Industry Veteran John Hawley
Optovue announced the retirement of industry veteran John Hawley, the company’s senior vice president of global sales. Hawley will retire on July 1, 2018 and will remain with Optovue in an advisory role.
Hawley joined Optovue in 2008 as the company was just beginning its entry into the ophthalmic and optometric optical coherence tomography (OCT) markets as the vice president of business development. Within six months, he was also heading up the U.S. organization. As the company introduced its OCTA technology to markets outside of the United States, he was promoted to senior vice president of global sales in 2016.
He has also held executive and sales management positions at Heidelberg Engineering, Interzeag, BioRad, and Cilco. Prior to this, Mr. Hawley was a member of the Royal Australian Navy.
IAW Honors Paula Shepherd as a 2018-2019 Influencer of the Year
The International Association of Women (IAW) is honoring Paula Shepherd as a 2018-2019 Influencer of the Year. She will be recognized with this prestigious distinction for leadership in entrepreneurship.
In her current role as plant manager at Johnson & Johnson Vision, Ms. Shepherd manages the day-to-day operations of the Jacksonville, FL-based facility and oversees a team of professionals. She previously was plant manager at Animas Corporation and, before that, held the position of Manufacturing Strategy Director Europe at Johnson & Johnson.
Have online channels for contact lens prescriptions or sales impacted the contact lens portion of your practice?
This image shows hydrops in a 74-year-old gentleman who has advanced keratoconus. We were waiting for the edema to subside before fitting him with a scleral lens. The peripheral cornea is most likely too thin for a corneal transplant.
We thank Dr. Arnold for this image and welcome photo submissions from our other readers! It is easy to submit a photo for consideration for publishing in Contact Lenses Today. Simply visit http://www.cltoday.com/upload/upload.aspx to upload your image. Please include a detailed explanation of the photo and your full name, degree or title, and city/state/country.
CARE SOLUTION CORNER
Andrew D. Pucker, OD, PhD
Online Patient Education Resources
My early days of practice were shaped by my experience at the GPLI Residents Weekend. While there, I had the opportunity to meet many of the leading contact lens educators. And, attending gave me exposure to most of the specialty contact lenses on the market. Two main takeaways from the event were that there is always more to learn and that a lot of the essential information related to contact lens fitting, care, and use can be found on a variety of websites, including the GPLI’s website: GPLI.info. This website is still a good place to go for a solid and quick contact lens reference.
The resources section of GPLI’s website has great downloadable patient handouts related to topics such as caring for scleral or GP contact lenses. The website also has a wealth of information that can be used for pamphlets or for developing resources for a website. GPLI.info also has a list of links to patient-friendly contact lens education websites such as www.contactlenssafety.org, www.contactlenses.org, and www.allaboutvision.com.
It is good practice to refer patients to these or other reputable websites by bringing up your favorites during your patient education, by sending your patients health habits tips via email, or even by linking to these websites from your own site, so that your patients can easily refer to them when they have a basic question that they want to answer on their own.
MATERIALS & DESIGNS
David L. Kading, OD
Throw Away Your Old Fitting Sets
While on the road visiting an office a few months ago, I saw the “trophy room” of fitting sets that the practitioner had amassed over the last 20 years of practice. While walking through the museum of lenses, it allowed for reflection on contact lenses by reputation, but most of which I had never fit. There were contact lenses that had oxygen permeability of nearly zero and toric lenses that were reported to rotate around a patient’s eye like a bicycle wheel.
When I asked the team why they keep the fitting sets, they shared that the practitioner liked to keep them just in case he needed to fit a patient in them. I asked them when was the last time that he used some of these fitting sets, and members of the team who had been there for a decade said that they had never seen him use them. Not to mention that the expiration date on many of the fitting sets was 10 years ago.
Fitting sets in our office need to be just that—sets that we use to fit patients. If you find yourself trying to fit newer materials and designs but always reverting back to older technology, maybe it is time to purge. About four years ago, I went through all of my fitting sets that I didn't want to use anymore and sent them back to my representatives. For me, it was monthly and two-week lenses. I have since moved my practice to 93% daily disposables. If you have a favorite lens set that you keep for old times’ sake, consider taking it home and putting it in your trophy cabinet. That way, you can make room in your office for innovative technology that moves our industry and patient health forward.
Cellular Fluorescein Hyperfluorescence Is Dynamin-Dependent and Increased by Tetronic 1107 Treatment
Sodium fluorescein staining of the ocular surface is frequently an indicator of compromised ocular health, and it increases in the presence of certain contact lens multipurpose solutions (MPSs), a phenomenon sometimes referred to as solution-induced corneal staining (SICS). The mechanism(s) underpinning fluorescein hyperfluorescence are uncertain, though they may reflect increased cellular uptake of fluorescein by corneal epithelial cells. For this study, the authors developed an in vitro model to study fluorescein uptake in both “generic” mammalian cells (murine fibroblasts) and human corneal epithelial cells.
Fluorescein hyperfluorescence increased after treatment with two MPSs associated with clinical corneal fluorescein staining, yet there was no cellular hyperfluorescence for two MPSs that do not cause this staining. Increased fluorescein uptake did not correlate with presence of a necrotic or an apoptotic marker (propidium iodide and Caspase-3, respectively). Incubation of MPS-treated cells with dynasore (an inhibitor of dynamin, implicated in endocytic pathways) reduced fluorescein uptake irrespective of MPS treatment. The non-ionic surfactant Tetronic 1107 (present in both MPSs associated with corneal fluorescein staining) increased uptake of fluorescein for both cell types, whereas an unrelated surfactant (Triton X-100) did not.
The authors concluded that the clinical hyperfluorescence profile observed after exposure to four MPSs can be reproduced using a simple model of cellular fluorescein uptake, suggesting that this is a biological basis for SICS. Further, fluorescein entry did not correlate with necrosis or apoptosis, but instead involved a dynamin-dependent active process. Moreover, the surfactant Tetronic 1107 appeared to be a key MPS constituent triggering increased fluorescein entry and may be the major factor responsible for SICS, according to this research.
Khan TF, Price BL, Morgan PB, Maldonado-Codina C, Dobson CB. Cellular fluorescein hyperfluorescence is dynamin-dependent and increased by Tetronic 1107 treatment. Int J Biochem Cell Biol. 2018 May 22. [Epub ahead of print]