During Eye Injury Prevention Month: Beware of Cosmetic Contact Lenses and Scleral Tattoos

Every year, during Eye Injury Prevention and Halloween Safety Month, I begin to get questions from friends and colleagues about the safety of decorative (also called “cosmetic,” “circle,” “costume,” or “non-prescription”) contact lenses. For the uninitiated, “circle lenses,” which first became popular in Asia about 10 years ago, are contact lenses that give the wearer … Continued

Can a New Type of Blood Test Identify Macular Degeneration Much Earlier? New Research Says Yes

New research led by the AMD Center of Excellence at Harvard Medical School, the University of Coimbra, Portugal, and Brigham and Women’s Hospital has used an emerging field of study, called “metabolomics” (explained below), to test patients’ blood and identify blood profiles that are associated with age-related macular degeneration (AMD). According to study co-author Joan … Continued

The FDA Officially Cracks Down on Stem Cell Clinics Offering Unproven and Dangerous Treatments

On Monday, August 28, 2017, Scott Gottlieb, M.D., Commissioner of the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA), announced a crackdown on stem cell clinics offering unproven and potentially dangerous treatments. Commissioner Gottlieb stated that he “will not allow deceitful actors to take advantage of vulnerable patients by purporting to have treatments or cures for … Continued

New Research: Medicaid Recipients with Glaucoma Receive Substantially Less Testing Than Persons with Commercial Health Insurance

Glaucoma often is called “the sneak thief of sight” for good reason: Many people are unaware that glaucoma has few symptoms or warning signs in its early stages. Early treatment for glaucoma can usually (but not always) slow the progression of the disease. However, as of yet, there is no cure for glaucoma. Because glaucoma … Continued

A Class-Action Lawsuit Against CVS Yields a Decision: Not All Eye Health and Macular Degeneration Supplements Are Equally Effective

Many VisionAware readers write to us, inquiring about the effectiveness of supplements for treating age-related macular degeneration (AMD). Many readers also request clarification of the claims made by companies that produce a now-staggering array of eye health supplements: Do these supplements cure AMD? Do they slow its progression? Can they prevent it from developing? Do … Continued

Readers Beware: Are All Clinical Trials Legitimate? Learn What to Look for and How to Protect Yourself

Of all the eye research developments reported on the VisionAware blog, it is stem cell research for eye disease that generates the most inquiries from our readers. Many readers request information about stem cells, assuming that this is an established and widely-performed treatment for eye disease; others ask for help in finding a doctor who … Continued

The Reality and Costs of Gene Therapy for Eye Disease: Who Will (or Can) Pay?

As our readers know, VisionAware is committed to providing current and reliable information about eye and vision research that is relevant to adults and older adults, many of whom experience late-life vision loss resulting in low vision. During the past several years, gene therapy has gained traction and offers promise for treating (but not yet … Continued

New Research: A Potential Eye Drop Treatment Could Take the Place of Injectable Drugs for Wet Macular Degeneration

Currently, there are a number of treatments for wet age-related macular degeneration, including the drugs Lucentis, Eylea, and Avastin, administered by injection with a very small needle directly into the eye after the surface has been numbed (also called “intra-vitreous injection”). From a patient’s point of view, however, the “gold standard” for treatment would be … Continued

Treating Macular Degeneration with Gene Therapy: New Research Shows Promise but Also Has Limitations

Currently, there are a number of treatments for wet age-related macular degeneration, including the drugs Lucentis, Eylea, and Avastin, administered by injection with a very small needle directly into the eye after the surface has been numbed (also called “intra-vitreous injection”). There are also a number of treatments that have proven to be inconclusive or … Continued

New Genetic Research in Diabetes Identifies a Protein That May Stop or Reduce Abnormal Blood Vessel Growth in the Retina

New genetic research in diabetes, led by a team from Harvard Medical School, has identified a potential new therapy targeting RUNX1 (explained below) that significantly reduced abnormal blood vessel growth in the retina, which is a hallmark of advanced diabetic eye disease. Although the research has been conducted only with “in vitro” (explained below) laboratory … Continued