Optometrist Perspective

C&E Vision Corporate Logo

Harvey Yamamoto, OD

Believe it or not, I’m still in denial that it is 2017. I better quickly get off that stick as this is already spring of 2917. It’s planting time. Yes, seeds of joy to water, watch growing and then providing fresh home grown veggies for my family and friends as well. Many of my friends are great gardeners and they are always sharing their crops with us. Yummy. Nothing like organic fresh veggies.

Last winter, I worked on my hillside, cleaning up the weeks. I bought a small cultivator that I could carry up the hills and do some serious ground work. My little green monster worked well until it would hit rocks and stop working. I quickly learned to wedge out the rocks and keep on churning the earth. It was a labor of love but great exercise. Some years ago, I planted a small cactus. It has grown to a huge bush that my wife asked me to trim. I took out 20 barrels of cactus. Wow. If only our practice would grow like that.

I thank my readers for jogging my memory a bit. I tend to get lost in my writing and thus my readers reminded me to focus on my review. Each year for the past 32 years, I’ve written in my January newsletter on what I accomplished the previous year. I apologize for that oversight. Thus, I will spend a few moments going over my previous years challenges that I was faced with The beauty of our profession is that we have so many facets to select from for our specialization. i.e.: Some like myself have chosen to dedicate their practice to contact lenses. Others have chosen to specialize in Pediatric Optometry. Still others have elected to become involved in Vision Development. I have several colleagues specializing in Dry Eyes. Yes, Dry Eyes is a specialty area today. Some of my colleages have limited their practices to Geriatric patients. We will see more and more various area’s of specialties in the future.

As for myself, I have spent my entire 50” years focused on contact lenses. I have seen the development of many different types of contact lenses. I told my staff during 2011, that our practice will begin to specialize in the difficult to fit patients in contact lenses.

I chose an area of expertise that suited my interest in Optometry. During pre-optometry classes, one of my professors invited students from Optometry college to give us a lecture. That was back in 1957. One of the students placed a hard lens on his finger and inserted the lens into his eye. My eyes nearly became bug-eyed watching this demonstration. I moved to the front row where I could get a closer look. The optometry student then popped the lens out of his eye. The lens landed a couple of inches from my feet. I was hooked.

From that moment on, I wanted to become an Optometrist and most of all, I wanted to become a contact lens fitter. I never forgot that demonstration for the balance of my pre-optometry studies. I began to study in earnest. My application was accepted right away. I would lay awake at nights dreaming of placing a lens on my eye and popping it out just like the demonstration.

4 years later, I found myself standing in front of many parents and young students. I placed a lens on my eye and the room buzzed with excitement. I then popped the lens out of my eye and that drew even more awe’s and ooo’s from the audience. It was my turn to turn on the charm and get students interested in Optometry.

Zipping forward some 50 years later, I find myself still conducting that very same process in front of patients. The excitement is still the same as it was 5 decades earlier. Today, we are fortunate to have custom made Scleral lenses. I enjoy showing as many patients that come into my office a sample Scleral lens. It catches everyone’s attention and it bring in many more patients. I must admit that the learning curve in fitting scleral lenses was quite steep for me. Learning how to master insertion and removal was more difficult than fitting soft lenses. Fitting patients who have become keratoconic is most difficult. Scleral lenses are the only way to go for these patients. The results are instant gratification. The smile that comes on the faces of these patients is priceless.

Our practice has our share of post-lasik failures like so many of your practices. Finally, we have the solution for these unhappy patients. The lens is called Yamakone IC. The Yamakone IC lenses are a huge blessing for these groups of patients. Becoming a specialist in contact lenses have been so much more practical with the advent of these lenses.

We also have many patients who are concerned with their childrens vision, They are constantly asking: ‘doctor, why do my child’s vision keeps getting worse? ‘Can’t we do anything about that?’ The answer today is: ‘Yes, we can.’ With Ortho-K lenses, we can finally introduce concerned parents about these specialty lenses that will give their child a lens that will remold their precious child’s vision while they sleep.

We have placea a large POP banner in the waiting room that can be seen by parents as they fill out their paperwork. The banner raises many questions. ‘Can my child be fitted with these lenses. ‘yes, Yes, they can.

Thus today, if you are thinking about specializing in the fitting of difficult patients. We have all the answers for you. Fitting speciality lenses do take time but your time will be handsomely rewarded. GP Specialists have all the specialty lenses which we need for our practice.

So in reflection of my previous year, we have fitted many specialty lenses during 2016. The referrals are our best source of new patients. Happy patients will go out of their way to refer patients to you.

During 2016, we have also added more equipment into our lens finishing dept. We believe in providing excellent service in order to spoil them to return again and again. Sending us their neighbors and friends is a must for a growing practice. Having good equipment goes a long ways toward meeting those goals.

Patients always notice new pre-testing equipment. Having the best equipment helps our doctors make quick and accurate diagnosis of our patients condition leading to happier patients who in turn are happy to refer their friends and family members to our practice thus sustaining our steady growth.

© 2017 C&E Vision's Industry News Feed. All rights reserved.
Service Provided By CandE Vision Services.