Author: Healio ophthalmology

Read articles from OSN’s Aug. 10 issue online

The cover story in the Aug. 10 issue of Ocular Surface News focused on dry eye therapeutic and diagnostic devices. Here are five more articles from the issue you might want to read:
Challenges in Ophthalmology with April Steinert
Contemplating retirement and the years surrounding it
Richard L. Lindstrom, MD, explains his challenge of passing the baton while remaining active in ophthalmology. Read more.
Complications Consult
Flap motility sign helps determine extent of anterior capsular tear
Surgeons can decide which steps to take based on the sign, reducing complications and resulting

Iridex posts $3.3 million net loss in second quarter

Iridex reported a net loss of $3.3 million, or $0.28 per share, in the second quarter of 2018 compared with a net loss of $2.75 million, or $0.24 per share, in the second quarter of 2017.
Revenues for the quarter increased to $10.3 million from $10 million in the previous year’s second quarter, according to a press release.
The company’s operating expenses were $7.6 million compared with 2017’s second quarter costs of $7.2 million.
Iridex had cash and cash equivalents of $16 million as of June 30.

VIDEO: Physician leadership development ‘now more than ever’ imperative

AUSTIN, Texas — In this exclusive video perspective from GI Outlook 2018, Karen L. Woods, MD, of Houston Methodist Gastroenterology Associates, discusses her presentation on how to develop leadership in a medical practice.
“This is a very important topic,” Woods told Healio Gastroenterology and Liver Disease. “I think many people don’t have a good understanding of [leadership]. There’s a lot of science behind leadership and developing leadership traits. One very important aspect is the root of your own personality.”
Everyone has several personality

VIDEO: ASGE works toward movement on MIPS, MACRA

AUSTIN, Texas — In this exclusive video perspective from GI Outlook 2018, Steven A. Edmundowicz, MD, FASGE, interim Division Director of Gastroenterology and Hepatology at University of Colorado School of Medicine and president of the ASGE, discusses how to best build a leadership team.
Additionally, Edmundowicz highlights a discussion from the conference that reviewed the new CMS proposal regarding E&M coding.
“This is a very important issue for all of our members and I want to assure you that we are working very hard with our reimbursement committee to try (Read more...)

FDA approves Eylea 12-week dosing for wet AMD

The FDA has approved a supplemental biologics license application for a 12-week dosing schedule of Eylea injection in wet age-related macular degeneration patients, Regeneron announced in a press release.
The FDA previously issued a complete response letter to Regeneron regarding the sBLA, which is based on data from the phase 3 VIEW 1 and 2 trials, in which wet AMD patients received Eylea (aflibercept) injections at least every 12 weeks, with additional doses as needed.
“We are pleased that the FDA has approved an updated label for Eylea,” George D. (Read more...)

CMS 2019 proposal offers new coding options to GIs

AUSTIN, Texas — In this exclusive video perspective from GI Outlook 2018, Glenn Littenberg, MD, FASGE, chair of the ASGE reimbursement committee and chief medical officer at inSite Digestive Healthcare in California, discusses a new Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services proposal that would change the way services are documented and paid for starting in 2019.
The revised plan would loosen paperwork requirements for reimbursement, giving physicians more time with their patients, Littenberg told Healio Gastroenterology and Liver Disease.
“Their idea was to try to reduce the burden

At Issue: Ensuring LASIK success and minimizing complications

Earlier this summer, LASIK was the topic of a New York Times article in which patients described negative side effects and complications after the procedure, including dry eye, aberrations, blurred vision and burning.
The American Academy of Ophthalmology responded to the article, saying that while complications are possible, the risks are low.
“The risks of LASIK surgery are known in the ophthalmology community and have been studied consistently since the FDA approved the procedure 20 years ago,” AAO President Keith Carter, MD, said in the statement. “More than 300

When treating patients with age-related macular degeneration, do you perform bilateral same-day intravitreal injections?

Click here to view the Cover Story to this Point/Counter.

“Git-R-Done!” That is what my patients say to me whenever I ask them if they prefer bilateral intravitreal injections on the same day. This is the sentiment of the vast majority of my patients with bilaterally active choroidal neovascularization or diabetic macular edema undergoing intravitreal injection therapy. As many of the patients require 4 to 8 weeks of follow-up and depend on transportation to the visits, the ability to reduce the number of appointments is essential. It is not only (Read more...)

What is Acthar?

Welcome to another edition of CEDARS/ASPENS Debates. CEDARS/ASPENS is a joint society of cornea, cataract and refractive surgery specialists, here to discuss some of the latest hot topics in ophthalmology.
In recent years, there have been numerous new medications evaluated for treatment of ocular inflammation. As with all new medications, there has been the issue of cost. This month, Melissa Toyos, MD, FACS, discusses a controversial new “old” anti-inflammatory medication that, while it may have tremendous potential to treat many conditions, may be cost prohibitive. We hope you

Treat-and-extend increasingly gains favor for individualized, proactive management of neovascular AMD

An appropriate treatment modality is key to the success of anti-VEGF therapy in neovascular age-related macular degeneration.
Over time, based on the results of clinical trials and their extensions, the revealing outcomes of real-life studies, and the long experience and consensus statements of many experts, the attitudes and habits of retina specialists have changed. In the United States, a treat-and-extend (T&E) regimen was favored by 66.2% of respondents to the 2015 American Society of Retina Specialists Global Trends survey, a combination of treat-and-extend and as-needed (PRN) by

Information on angle alpha allows more accurate IOL predictions

Centration of implants — particularly multifocals, extended depth-of-focus lenses or moderate to high toric models — is critical to achieve maximum optical performance. Therefore, when implanting these types of IOLs, proper centration is vital to good visual outcomes. A myriad of issues may result from decentered implants, including glare, halos and a decline of visual acuity. Toric lenses, if not aligned properly, may also result in residual astigmatism and reduced visual quality. The best way to center these IOLs remains, however, a topic of debate.
The terms angle kappa and

Gonioscopy: A necessary skill

Proficiency in performing gonioscopy is an asset not only to glaucoma specialists but also to cataract surgeons who undertake microinvasive glaucoma surgery.
Gonioscopy, which enables visualization and magnification of the iridocorneal angle through the use of a gonioscopic lens, “is very important for the diagnosis of glaucoma in terms of our major divisions of glaucoma, open angle and closed angle. The only real way you can ascertain that is through gonioscopy,” OSN Glaucoma Board Member Douglas J. Rhee, MD, said. “It should be done for anyone you suspect of having (Read more...)

Follow the money: A possible solution from D.C.?

Do you read financial news? You know, the Wall Street Journal, Investor’s Business Daily or at least the business section of your local rag? You really should. There is all kinds of stuff in there that is important and affects your everyday practice experience no matter what kind of practice you may have.
As you know, I have long railed against the outsized influence and immoral financial practices of the largest health care organizations in the U.S. Big vertically integrated providers (think your local massive medical system with Man’s Best (Read more...)

Elderly man presents with severe, intermittent left eye pain

An 80-year-old retired firefighter with a history of wet age-related macular degeneration since 1990 presented to the retinal specialist for new intermittent severe left throbbing eye pain over the past month. The pain woke him up from sleep and was so severe at times that he wanted to “pluck [his] eyeball out of the socket.” He denied flashes or floaters. He reported his vision was slightly dimmer at times in this eye. He was pseudophakic in both eyes, and he had been followed by his retinal specialist regularly for the (Read more...)

DREAM study reflects ‘real-world’ dry eye disease patients

The 1-year Dry Eye Assessment and Management study was designed to include “real-world” dry eye disease patients and determine if omega-3 oral supplementation affected their dry eye symptoms.
The study design, the decision to allow all participants to remain on their current dry eye therapies and the use of olive oil as the trial placebo have been questioned by some ophthalmologists after the results of the trial were released in April.
The majority of patients with symptomatic dry eye disease are treated for their disease before trying omega-3 supplementation. By (Read more...)

3 take-aways on payment models at GI Outlook 2018

AUSTIN, Texas — In this exclusive video perspective from GI Outlook 2018, Colleen M. Schmitt, MD, MHS, FASGE, president of the Galen Medical Group in Chattanooga, Tennessee, highlights a few talks on payment models presented at the meeting.
“We had the opportunity to have some of our experts on MACRA and MIPS give us an update on the status of those new rules and regulations and how they apply to our practice,” she told Healio Gastroenterology and Liver Disease.
She explained how the presenters detailed each category and how the (Read more...)

Astellas Pharma acquires Quethera

Astellas Pharma has acquired the U.K.-based gene therapy company Quethera, which is developing novel treatment for ocular disorders, Astellas announced in a press release.
The transaction includes Quethera’s ophthalmic gene therapy program, which uses a recombinant adeno-associated viral vector system to introduce therapeutic genes into target retinal cells to treat glaucoma, the release said.
“This acquisition demonstrates Astellas’ commitment to proactively incorporate state-of-the-art scientific and technological advances and turn them into value for patients,” Kenji