Sunday, March 24, 2013

New Implantable Telescope to Treat Macular Degeneration in Connecticut

Dr. Randolph Kinkade, Connecticut optometrist and founding member of the International Academy of Low Vision Specialists, is part of  the doctor team offering a new treatment for macular degeneration patients in Connecticut.



Dr. Randolph Kinkade during an IMT interview.




Link to Television Interview

 
The Implantable Miniature Telescope (IMT) technology reduces the impact of vision loss due to advanced macular degeneration.  The telescope projects the objects the patient is looking at onto healthier areas of the light-sensing retina in the back of the eye not degenerated by the disease.


 
Macular Degeneration is the leading cause of vision loss in seniors.  There are approximately two million senior Americans who have the advanced form of this disease affecting the central region of the retina called the macula.  The macula is responsible for detailed vision like reading, writing, watching television, seeing faces and driving.
 
Dr. Kinkade has been fitting Spectacle Miniature Telescopes (SMTs) for over twenty years.  These special glasses have prescriptions built into tiny telescopes mounted into eyeglasses.



An Implantable Miniature Telescope next to a Spectacle Miniature Telescope.



The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved the IMT in 2010.  The surgical procedure involves removing the eye's natural lens that has a cataract and replacing the lens with the telescope implant. The tiny telescope is implanted behind and through the pupil.
 
Looking through a miniature telescope.
 
 
"While it doesn’t cure macular degeneration, it will help improve the vision of patients and help maximize their vision," said Dr. Kinkade.   It will help them resume some of their favorite activities and regain independence".
 
The  telescopic implant costs approximately $15,000.  That does not include the cost of surgery and rehabilitation. The IMT is covered by Medicare for eligible patients. 
 
"After the  implantation, patients enroll in an extensive rehabilitation program that involves training them to use the device", said Dr. Kinkade.  "Rehabilitation takes about six months to a year is a very critical component."


Dr. Kinkade looking through an External Telescopic Simulator.
 
 
Patients must reteach their brain to see differently.  The eye with the implant see things larger and centrally.  The other eye see things their normal size and peripherally.  This is  unique and different way of seeing.
 
Dr. Kinkade cautions the surgery is for select individuals.   Candidates must be 75 years of age or older, have dry macular degeneration  and no longer be a candidate for drug treatments. Patients are excluded if they have had previous cataract surgery in the eye to be implanted.   There are additional eye shape and eye health requirements.
 
There is good news for patients who are not candidates for the IMT, because they are quite often candidates for the SMT.
 
Dr. Kinkade and patient wearing a Spectacle Miniature Telescope.
 
 
(800) 756-0766



Cheshire - Danbury - Farmington - Litchfield - Manchester - Norwalk - Waterford



Thursday, March 21, 2013

Macular Degeneration Low Vision Treatment in Connecticut


A person is considered to have "low vision" when they can no longer see well enough to do the things they need and like to do.  Low vision cannot be corrected by regular glasses, medicine or surgery.  Low Vision Rehabilitation is a branch of medicine helping patients maximize their vision with special glasses and adaptive aids.

Age-related macular degeneration is a progressive sight robbing disease.  Not only can the disease affect the eyes, it can cause a reduced quality of life and depression.

Age-related macular degeneration affects around 8 million Americans.  It can begin around the age of 50 and about 10 percent of patients have the condition by age 75.  This number increases to 30 percent by the age of 85.

Blurred vision is usual symptom of this disease and it may affect near vision tasks first.


Near Vision: reading - writing - computer - card playing - knitting

Far Vision: television - theater - faces - scenery

 
For macular degeneration the best low vision rehabilitation options are Spectacle Miniature Telescopes, Prismatic Glasses, Implantable Miniature Telescopes and Electronic Magnification Aids.
 
Examples of Spectacle Miniature Telescopes

 




 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 Examples of Prismatic Glasses
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Examples of Implantable Miniature Telescopes
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Examples of Electronic Magnification Aids
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Dr. Kinkade has been featured on:
 





 

 



Dr. Kinkade has low vision offices throughout Connecticut: Cheshire, Danbury, Farmington, Litchfield, Manchester, Norwalk and Waterford.  Please call for a telephone consultation to see if you or someone you know is a candidate for any of these rehabilitation options.


 
 
 
 

Macular Degeneration and Low Vision Treatment

Low vision rehabilitation treats vision loss created by macular degeneration.

Low vision is a loss of eyesight that makes important tasks like reading, writing, shopping, watching television, driving a car or recognizing faces difficult, if not impossible.  Low vision patients can use  special high-power glasses and a variety of devices to improve their vision.

Macular degeneration is usually an age-related eye disease that can result in considerable vision loss. It occurs when the macula, or center part of the retina providing 20/20 vision, begins to breakdown.

The macula is an extremely important  part of the retina used for seeing.  It allows us to focus and carry out many vision related duties like reading, writing, driving and crafts.


The macula is essential for crisp detail vision.  The peripheral retina (side vision) is designed for detecting general objects (awareness) and motion (when you catch something move out of the corner of your eye).  The peripheral vision is very important helping you see your general surroundings, but for detail vision you need a healthy macula.

Macular degeneration is the leading cause of permanent vision loss of vision for individuals who are above age 60.  The chances of developing significant macular degeneration increases with age.

There are two forms of macular degeneration: wet and dry.

Dry Macular Degeneration
Dry macular degeneration is considered the most common (80-90%) and consists of yellow deposits (drusen) developing in the macula. In dry macular degeneration, blind spots develop within the line of vision.  The decrease in vision is usually gradual and takes many years to develop. There is not effective treatment for this form of the disease.

Wet Macular Degeneration
Wet macular degeneration is more prone to rapid and severe vision loss if not treated.  In this condition blood vessels develop and leak fluid behind the macula.  Current treatment involves a series of injections to stop the vessels from developing.

Macular Degeneration Symptoms
Some macular degeneration indicators include:

1.       It is more difficult to read  (“not enough ink on the page”)

2.       Straight lines and objects appear wavy

3.       Letters or small words “come and go” when you read


Macular Degeneration Risk Factors
Advancing age is the number one risk factor for developing this condition

 Other Risk Factors
       1.   Smoking or history of smoking

       2.   High blood pressure, vascular disorders

       3.   Caucasian descent

       4.   High saturated fat diet
 
       5.   Diet lacking certain vitamins and antioxidants

       5.   Sunlight exposure

       6.   Farsightedness



About Dr. Randolph Kinkade

Dr. Kinkade has a master of public health degree (MPH) from the University of Connecticut where he concentrated his studies on the prevalence and treatment of low vision.

He is a founding member of the International Academy of Low Vision Specialists.

Dr. Kinkade is a Fellow of the American Academy of Optometry Low Vision Section and a member of the Vision Rehabilitation Section of the American Optometric Association.

He has offices throughout Connecticut: Cheshire, Danbury,Farmington, Litchfield, Manchester, Norwalk and Waterford.

Additional information can be found on his website www.LowVisionEyeglasses.com. He can be contacted at 800.756.0766 and emailed to rkinkade@optonline.net


Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Treatment for Vision Loss and Low Vision


I have just been interviewed on WFSB and WTNH in Connecticut regarding the first Implantable Miniature Telescope (IMT) for treating advanced macular degeneration.  

Low Vision is the field of rehabilitation medicine for treating permanent vision loss when there are no glasses, medicine, or surgical options to improve lost eyesight.  Low Vision rehabilitation is all about promoting the well-being of those changed by vision loss.
 
 
 
I have been presribing Spectacle Mounted Telescopes (SMTs) for vison enhancement for over twenty years.
 
 

Macular degeneration is the leading cause of vision loss in older adults.  People with vision loss and their family members often do not know where to turn for help.  My message has always been: “There is hope when vision fails”.
 
 

Besides being an optometrist, I have a Master of Public Health degree.  I have studied in the prevalence of vision impairment and strive to improve access to low vision care.  I consult with general ophthalmologists and retina specialists daily.

 

 
I would be happy to talk to you or your family member to see if you are a candidate for the IMT, SMT or Electronic Magnification Aids.
 
(800) 756-0766
 


Cheshire - Danbury - Farmington - Litchfield - Manchester - Norwalk - Waterford


Sunday, March 10, 2013

New Hope and Treatments for Macular Degeneration in Connecticut

Connecticut optometrist, Dr. Randolph Kinkade and founding member of the International Academy of Low Vision Specialists, is helping those suffering from macular degeneration see better.

Rehabiliation Treatment options for Macular Degeneration: Spectacle Miniature Telescopes, Implantable Miniature Telescopes and Electronic Magnification Aids.

Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) is the leading cause of permanent vision loss and low vision for Americans over the age of 55. It is estimated it affects as many as 15 million people in the country.  The number is expected to grow to close to 30 million in the next 10-20 years.  Low vision is the result of permanent vision reducing eye diseases like macular degeneration.

Macular degeneration is a progressive disease that leads to damage to cells in the retina in the back of the eye.  More precisely, it affects the straight ahead vision in the macula.  When the macula is damaged people describe their vision as “cloudy” or “misty” or even “distorted”.  In the advancing stages there are “blind spots” or “missing pieces” in the central vision making reading the newspaper very difficult or impossible.

“People with living with macular degeneration often have difficulty with important everyday tasks we all take for granted.  This takes its toll physically and mentally on patients and their families,” says Dr. Kinkade.


Dr. Kinkade with External Telescopic Simulator

In the past, patients have heard from their doctors there is nothing more that can be done for their macular degeneration.   Now with pioneering changes comes new hope.  Medical treatment offer injections for wet AMD.  

“Rehabilitation options like Spectacle Miniature Telescopes and Implantable Miniature Telescopes provide better vision,” says Dr. Kinkade.  “Electronic magnification aids improve contrast and reading ability”.
 

Spectacle Miniature Telescopes (SMTs) are emerging as a tremendous option for many patients with vision limiting conditions.  Tiny telescopes, providing magnification and clarity, are prescribed into glasses with the patient’s prescription built in.  Dr. Kinkade is using newly designed SMTs.
 
Patient with Spectacle Miniature Telescope

 
Implantable Miniature Telescopes (IMTs) are providing a new surgical treatment for some older patients with advanced macular generation.  A micro-telescope replaces a developing cataract in one eye.  Dr. Kinkade is part of the first doctor team in Connecticut to offering the IMT.


Patient with Implantable Miniature Telescope
 
 
Electronic Magnification Aids offer tremendous magnification and improved contrast for reading.  They are available in hand-held and desk-top units.  The monitor size varies depending on the design and application.
 
Patient with Electronic Video Magnifier (CCTV)
 
 
About Macular Degeneration

There are two form of AMD. Dry (atrophic) AMD is caused by a slow breakdown of the light-sensitive cells in the macula at the back of the eye.  There is no current treatment for this form of AMD
 
 


Dry Macular Degeneration
In wet (exudative) AMD, fluid and blood leaks behind the macula damaging the photoreceptors needed for vision.  A series of injections can now often stop the advancement of this form of AMD.

 
Wet Macular Degeneration

In their later stages both wet and dry AMD cause legal blindness.

The true causes of macular degeneration remain unclear.  It is known that advancing age is the greatest risk factor for this disease.  Contributing factors are believed to be nutrition, smoking, genetics and possibly exposure to ultraviolet light.
 
 


About Dr. Randolph Kinkade

Dr. Kinkade as a master of public health degree (MPH) from the University of Connecticut where he concentrated his studies on the prevalence and treatment of low vision.

He is a Fellow of the American Academy of Optometry Low Vision Section and a member of the Vision Rehabilitation Section of the American Optometric Association.

He has offices throughout Connecticut: Cheshire, Danbury,Farmington, Litchfield, Manchester, Norwalk and Waterford.

Additional information can be found on his website www.LowVisionEyeglasses.com. He can be contacted at 800.756.0766 and emailed to rkinkade@optonline.net

 

Friday, March 8, 2013

Television News: First Telescopic Implant in Connecticut for Macular Degeneration

Telescope implants offer new surgical treatment and hope for persons with advanced macular degeneration. 

Dr. Randolph Kinkade has been recently interviewed on WFSB’s Your Health and WTNH’s Health News discussing this new technology.  Dr. Kinkade, a Connecticut optometrist, is a founding member of the International Academy of Low Vision Specialists. 
 
 

About the size of an eraser tip, the Implantable Miniature Telescope shows promise for some patients who are legal blind due to macular degeneration.   Macular degeneration is the leading cause of permanent vision loss in older Americans. 

“I have been fitting Spectacle Miniature Telescopes in glasses for improving eyesight for over twenty years to help patients improve their ability to read, write and watch television”, says Dr. Kinkade. “For certain patients we now have the ability to replace a developing cataract in their eye with a micro-telescope that returns some very useful vision.”

The newly FDA and Medicare approved telescope is placed in only one eye.  The telescope implant focuses and enlarged image onto healthier parts of the macula and retina at the back of the eye.  The other eye provides the necessary peripheral or side vision for walking and performing other tasks.

Dr. Kinkade’s treatment role is with candidate selection and determining which eye gets the implant.  He also spends considerable time with patients after surgery guiding them to use their new vision.  Dr. Mark Milner will be doing the surgery.

“The implant is not a cure for macular degeneration, but a rehabilitation tool to return some very important vision”, says Dr. Kinkade.  “Patients will need to relearn to see and use additional low vision aids to maximize their vision.”

For pictures of the telescopic implant, educational videos and information about the treatment program please visit www.LowVisionEyeglasses.com

 About Macular Degeneration
 
·         Macular degeneration affects the macula, the part of the retina needed for detail central vision. Patients do see things to the side with their peripheral vision, but it is too blurry for detailed vision like reading.

·         The first signs of macular degeneration may include wavy lines, distortion, or blurry spots when reading.

·         There are two types of macular degeneration (wet and dry).   There is no medical treatment for the dry form of the disease.

·         Low vision rehabilitation provides Spectacle Miniature Telescopes and other magnification aids to help restore lost vision.
 

 
About Dr. Randolph Kinkade
 
Dr. Kinkade is a Fellow of the American Academy of Optometry Low Vision Section and a member of the Vision Rehabilitation Section of the American Optometric Association.
 
Dr. Kinkade has a master of public health degree (MPH) from the University of Connecticut where he concentrated his studies on the prevalence and treatment of low vision.
 
He has offices throughout Connecticut: Cheshire, Danbury, Farmington, Litchfield, Manchester, Norwalk and Waterford.

 

Saturday, March 2, 2013

New Treatment for Macular Degeneration and Low Vision in Connecticut

Connecticut low vision optometrist, Dr. Randolph Kinkade, is helping those suffering from macular degeneration and low vision see better.

Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) is the leading cause of permanent vision loss and low vision for Americans over the age of 55. It is estimated it affects as many as 15 million people in the country.  The number is expected to grow to close to 30 million in the next 10-20 years.  Low vision is the result of permanent vision reducing eye conditions like macular degeneration.

Advanced End-Stage AMD
 
Macular degeneration is a progressive disease that leads to damage to cells in the retina in the back of the eye.  More precisely, it affects the straight ahead vision in the macula.  When the macula is damaged people describe their vision as “cloudy” or “misty” or even “distorted”.  In the advancing stages there are “blind spots” or “missing pieces” in the central vision making reading the newspaper very difficult or impossible.
 
“People with living with macular degeneration often have difficulty with important everyday tasks we all take for granted.  This takes its toll physically and mentally on patients and their families,” says Dr. Kinkade.
 
Dr. Randolph Kinkade and
External Telescopic Simulator
 
In the past, patients have heard from their doctors there is nothing more that can be done for their macular degeneration.   Now with pioneering changes comes new hope.  Medical treatment offer injections for wet AMD.  
 
“Rehabilitation options like Spectacle Miniature Telescopes and Implantable Miniature Telescopes provide better vision,” says Dr. Kinkade.  “Electronic magnification aids improve contrast and reading ability.”
 
Spectacle Miniature Telescopes (SMTs) are emerging as a tremendous option for many patients with vision limiting conditions.  Tiny telescopes, providing magnification and clarity, are prescribed into glasses with the patient’s prescription built in.  Dr. Kinkade is using newly designed SMTs.



Patient with SMT
 

Implantable Miniature Telescopes (IMTs) are providing a new surgical treatment for some older patients with advanced macular generation.  A micro-telescope replaces a developing cataract in one eye.  Dr. Kinkade is part of the first doctor team in Connecticut to offering the IMT.


Patient with IMT

Electronic Magnification Aids offer tremendous magnification and improved contrast for reading.  They are available in hand-held and desk-top units.  The monitor size varies depending on the design and application.
Patient with Electronic Magnifier
.
 
About Macular Degeneration

There are two form of AMD. Dry (atrophic) AMD is caused by a slow breakdown of the light-sensitive cells in the macula at the back of the eye.  There is no current treatment for this form of AMD

Dry AMD

 
In wet (exudative) AMD, fluid and blood leaks behind the macula damaging the photoreceptors needed for vision.  A series of injections can now often stop the advancement of this form of AMD.



Wet AMD
 
In their later stages both wet and dry AMD cause legal blindness.
 
The true causes of macular degeneration remain unclear.  It is known that advancing age is the greatest risk factor for this disease.  Contributing factors are believed to be nutrition, smoking, genetics and possibly exposure to ultraviolet light.



About Dr. Randolph Kinkade
Dr. Kinkade is a founding member of the International Academy of Low Vision Specialists. Beside his optometric degree, he has a master of public health degree (MPH) from the University of Connecticut where he concentrated his studies on the prevalence and treatment of low vision.

Dr. Kinkade is a Fellow of the American Academy of Optometry Low Vision Section and a member of the Vision Rehabilitation Section of the American Optometric Association.

He has offices throughout Connecticut: Cheshire, Danbury, Farmington, Litchfield, Manchester, Norwalk and Waterford.

Videos and additional information can be found on his website www.lowvisioneyeglasses.com and blog http://lowvisioneyeglasses.blogspot.com.   He can be contacted at 800.756.0766.

Friday, March 1, 2013

Connecticut Low Vision Doctor Restores Sight


Dr. Randolph Kinkade, founding member of the International Academy of Low Vision Specialists, treats vision loss in Connecticut.  Low vision is reduced vision impacting your ability to see and do the things you need to do.  It is caused by vision limiting conditions like macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy, glaucoma, optic nerve disease and others. 



Dr. Kinkade with low vision External Telescopic Simulator



Published: Thursday, February 14, 2013 
Link to Torrington Register Citizen's Interview with Dr. Kinkade


(800) 756-0766






Cheshire - Danbury - Farmington - Litchfield - Manchester - Norwalk - Waterford

Low Vision Rehabilitation in Connecticut

Low vision, most often due to macular degeneration, is the term used to describe a permanent reduction in eyesight  that cannot be fully corrected with eyeglasses or surgery that negatively impacts daily life.  Dr. Randolph Kinkade, a Connecticut optometrist and a founding member of the International Academy of Low Vision Specialists, evaluates the degree of low vision and prescribes treatment. 
 

Dr. Randolph Kinkade with External Telescopic Simulator

 
The primary causes of low vision are eye diseases, such as macular degeneration, glaucoma and diabetic retinopathy. But low vision also can be inherited or caused by an eye or brain injury.

Age-related macular degeneration, also known as AMD, is a the second-highest cause of irreversible blindness in the world and the leading cause of blindness in Americans over the age of 55.
 
AMD is the deterioration of the macula, the part of the eye that is responsible for our sharp central vision. Usually the loss of vision is slow, but in some cases the vision loss can occur much more rapidly.
 
Low Vision Binocular Spectacle Miniature Telecopes

A person with low vision is not blind because they have some useful sight.  The degree of their visual loss can make daily tasks, such as reading and driving, difficult or impossible.

Though children as well as adults can be visually impaired, low vision is most common with seniors. Loss of eyesight after a lifetime of good vision can be devastating. Frustration and depression are common with people with significant vision impairments.  Not being able to read fluently, drive safely, or see images on a television or computer screen clearly can cause people to become isolated.

A person with low vision is not blind since they have some useful sight, but the degree of their vision loss can make important daily tasks, such as reading and driving, difficult or nearly impossible or even completely impossible.
 

Though children as well as adults can be visually impaired, low vision is mostly a problem that afflicts seniors. Vision loss after a lifetime of good eyesight can be very traumatic, leading to frustration and depression.

The cause of AMD is not fully known, but it is believed to be caused from multiple factors Age has certainly been shown to play a significant role in AMD. The older one gets the more likely one is to get AMD. Genetics is certainly another factor for some and the condition occurs more frequently in Caucasians than those of African descent. Studies have also found that smoking increases the risk of
 

Low Vision Bioptic Spectacle Miniature Telescope

 
Patients with permanent vision can be helped with Spectacle Mounted Telescopes (SMTs) as well as optical and electronic magnification.  The goal in low vision rehabilitation is to maximize and adapt the remaining vision.
 
(800) 756-0766
 
 

Cheshire - Danbury - Farmington - Litchfield - Manchester - Norwalk - Waterford



 

Prismatic Magnifying Readers for Macular Degeneration Treatment

Prismatic Magnifying Readers (PMRs) for macular degeneration glasses can improve, but not restore lost vision.  Dr. Randolph Kinkade, a Connecticut optometrist and  founding member of the International Academy of Low Vision Specialists, understands low vision. 
 
High power reading glasses that include  strong prism are designed to get both eyes reading together (both eyes must have similar vision).  They can improve vision by moving the image to healthier parts of the retina in both eyes simultaneously.




 


 
 
The macula is a small part of the retina that is responsible for the detail vision (i.e., reading and writing). Macula is very sensitive and it gives us the ability to read small prints or thread a needle or find the slot in a screw. Macular degeneration is the leading cause of vision loss for people over 55.


 

 
Link to more information regarding prismatic eyeglasses and other low vision rehabiliation options

It might develop as symptoms of vision blurred or distorted central vision. How fast vision declines and how much vision is lost varies amount those with macular degeneration.
 


Regular glasses cannot fix vision damaged by macular degeneration. Regular glasses can only focus images onto the damaged retina.  Magnifying prismatic macular degeneration glasses can improve vision by magnifying the image to undamaged parts of the retina in both eyes.
 

(800) 756-0766


Cheshire - Danbury - Farmington - Litchfield - Manchester - Norwalk - Waterford