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GIVE THANKS FOR GOOD VISION By Dr. Mark German, Optometrist at Lakeshore Eye Care Professionals with offices in Mequon & Saukville, Wisconsin

By editor
November 20, 2014

Most of us pretty much take our vision for granted but maintaining good vision does take some effort on your part. You should be sure to have a complete eye examination with dilating drops at least every two years.  If you have diabetes, then you should come in every year.  We generally see glaucoma patients every six months.  Warning signs that would warrant an immediate eye examination include eye pain, light sensitivity, blurred vision, loss of side vision or an increase in floaters.

You may have good vision but what about your relatives or neighbors?  If you are starting to think about holiday gifts, consider something that would make their lives easier.  They probably have enough “stuff” but could really use a ride to the store, doctor’s appointment or just out for some fun.  There are options, although limited, to get around if you don’t drive in Ozaukee County.  But the loss of freedom is pretty distressing to many seniors who can no longer drive due to vision or other medical problems.

The above is just something to reflect upon during the Thanksgiving holiday.  And while you are at it, don’t forget to schedule those eye appointments for yourself and your family!  Remember that we provide advanced medical and surgical eye care for patients of all ages: everything from complete eye examinations to LASIK vision correction and small incision cataract surgery. We are certainly thankful for all our wonderful patients at Lakeshore Eye Care and wish a happy Thanksgiving holiday to all.

Dr. Mark E. GermanDr. Mark German is an Optometrist at Lakeshore Eye Care Professionals specializing in comprehensive eye care for patients of all ages. He particularly welcomes the challenge of those with hard to fit contact lens problems.

From more eye care information, call 262-241-1919 or visit www.LakeShoreVision.com.


LASIK VS CATARACT SURGERY: WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE? By Dr. Martha Jay, Ophthalmologist at Lakeshore Eye Care Professionals with offices in Mequon & Saukville, Wisconsin

By editor
November 15, 2014

Confused about the difference between LASIK and cataract surgery? You are not alone. LASIK is a laser procedure intended to eliminate your need for glasses or contact lenses. Cataract surgery is done to remove the cloudy lens in the front of your eye and replace it with a clear plastic implant. If you have cataracts, LASIK is not an option for you because your vision would still be blurred afterwards due to the cloudy cataract.

LASIK is done at an outpatient laser center with mild oral sedation. We begin by using a laser to make a small flap on the surface of the eye. Once this tiny flap is lifted, we use a second laser to alter the shape of the eye to improve you vision without glasses.  Each laser is pain-free and runs for less than a minute per eye.

Cataract surgery takes place in an operating room with I.V. sedation.  We use a tiny ultrasound to liquefy and then remove the cloudy lens inside the eye, behind the colored pupil. We then replace that lens with a clear plastic implant to improve your vision.  There now are a number of implant options, all of which will be thoroughly explained at the time of your cataract evaluation. The procedure takes 10-15 minutes.

How can you tell if LASIK is a possibility for you? Just come in for a free LASIK screening exam. We will evaluate your vision and eyes to see if LASIK is right for you. How can you tell if you have cataracts? Cataract symptoms include blurred distance vision, especially at night, along with seeing halos around lights and glare on sunny days.  However, a complete eye examination is the best way to determine if cataracts are a significant problem for you. See you soon!

Dr. Martha F. Jay

Martha F. Jay, Ph.D., M.D.

Dr. Martha Jay is a board certified Ophthalmologist (Eye Physician and Surgeon) specializing in medical and surgical eye care including blade-free iLASIK and small incision cataract surgery.

For more eye care information, call 262-241-1919 or visit www.LakeShoreVision.com.


REFRACTION EXPLAINED By Dr. Mark German, Optometrist at Lakeshore Eye Care Professionals with offices in Mequon & Saukville, Wisconsin

By editor
October 27, 2014

What is “Refraction" and why is this service often not covered by Medicare or some private insurance companies?  If you are confused about this topic, you are not alone.  Refraction is the part of the eye exam where you look through a machine called a phoropter at the eye chart.  We than flip different lenses in place and ask, "Which view is clearer, number one or number two?"

Why is Refraction necessary?  Many think that refraction is only necessary if you want to purchase new glasses.  While we do need the refraction information to write a glasses prescription, this is not the main reason our doctors want this portion of the exam completed.

Refraction is a key part of a comprehensive eye examination and should be done at each and every complete eye exam. Without this testing, our doctors cannot determine your best possible vision. Many patients think their vision is just fine but then a change is noted during the exam. Without doing the refraction, we have no way of knowing if the change is simply due to an outdated glasses prescription or if something more serious has occurred like progression of cataracts or macular degeneration.

Dr. Mark E. GermanWhy does Medicare generally not cover refraction? Medicare and many private insurance companies do not cover aspects of your medical care that they deem as “routine.”  While this aspect of your eye exam is routine, that does not mean it is not vital in allowing our doctors to optimize your vision.

Still confused? Ask any member of our staff at your next appointment.

Dr. Mark German is an optometrist specializing in general eye care and hart-to-fit contact lens patients. He accepts patients of all ages into his practice and most insurance plans. For more eye care information, call 262-241-1919 or visit www.LakeShoreVision.com.


WHAT IS A SECONDARY CATARACT? By Dr. Martha Jay, Ophthalmologist at Lakeshore Eye Care in Mequon & Saukville, Wisconsin

By editor
October 21, 2014

A common question from patients is, “Do cataracts come back?” The answer is yes and no. Once you have cataract surgery, you do not have to go back to the operating room at a later date to repeat the procedure. What can happen is that you may develop a secondary cataract. This is a clouding behind the implant and is easily treated with a quick laser procedure.

The lens in the eye is shaped like a tiny pillow, rounded on the edges and flattened on the front and back. It is covered with a thin membrane, measuring less than 5 microns thick. At the time of cataract surgery, we carefully remove a circular area from the front of this membrane and gently vacuum out your cloudy lens. We then use this remaining membrane, known as “the bag,” to support the plastic intraocular lens which allows you to see clearly after surgery.

In about 10% of cases, this membrane becomes cloudy over time and we call it a secondary cataract.  It usually takes 3-5 years for this to happen and the symptoms are very similar to those noticed prior to the original surgery: blurred distance vision, glare and halos around lights.

Dr. Martha F. Jay

Martha F. Jay, Ph.D., M.D.

As previously mentioned, the treatment is a quick laser. You wear street clothes and put your chin on something that looks just like what we use in the office during your eye exam. Afterwards there are no activity restrictions and the potential risk for complications is minimal. So if you start to notice that your vision has become blurred several years after cataract surgery, come in and we will determine if this is your problem.  If so, you are just a quick laser away from resuming your clear vision.

Dr. Martha Jay is a board certified ophthalmologist specializing in medical and surgical eye care including small incision cataract surgery and blade-free LASIK vision correction.

For more eye care information, call 262-241-1919 or visit www.LakeShoreVision.com


WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU COMBINE CHICKENS, LASIK AND FLEX PLANS? By Dr. Martha Jay, Ophthalmologist at Lakeshore Eye Care with offices in Mequon & Saukville, Wisconsin

By editor
September 30, 2014

Each fall these three factors combine, motivating those “chickens” to arrange LASIK for the coming year. They have wanted LASIK for years but were frankly a little afraid of the procedure. They then did their research and calmed down when they realized that our blade-free LASIK is extremely safe, making it almost impossible to have a complication during this pain-free procedure.

Those “chickens” also insist on a well respected, experienced local doctor they can trust. They know that I was the first doctor in the Milwaukee area to perform laser refractive surgery and thus have consistently offered the safest and most precise technology available. That includes the exclusive use of blade-free LASIK since 2005.

When you combine the “LASIK for Chickens” concept with the annual Flex Plan enrollment period, you have a perfect mix.  Whether the goal is to spend down your 2014 funds or you are planning for 2015, be sure to include LASIK in your calculations.

Don’t despair if a Flex Plan is not available to you, you can still take advantage of our other finance options. We offer interest-free financing through CareCredit and accept most major credit cards.  LASIK is a sure investment in your future and over time represents a considerable savings over the expenses associated with contact lenses.

Dr. Martha F. Jay

Martha F. Jay, Ph.D., M.D.

Motivated now? Then call today to arrange your complimentary LASIK screening exam before your Flex Plan enrollment period expires. See you soon!

Dr. Martha Jay is a Board Certified Ophthalmologist specializing in medical and surgical eye care.  For more eye care information, call 262-241-1919 or visit www.LakeShoreVision.com.


HOW TO AVOID TROUBLE WITH CONTACTS By Dr. Mark German, Optometrist at Lakeshore Eye Care Professionals in Mequon & Saukville, Wisconsin

By editor
September 18, 2014

Contact lenses are a great alternative to glasses for sports and everyday wear. You can avoid fogged up glasses, expand your peripheral or side vision, wear off-the-rack sunglasses or non-prescription sports goggles, and avoid the annoying “slide down the nose” syndrome.  Contacts, however, do take a bit more care than just throwing on a pair of glasses each morning.

Staying out of trouble with contacts starts with being sure you have an accurate fit and prescription by having a complete eye exam every one to two years. If your eyes hurt, become red or your vision changes suddenly then an emergent appointment is indicated as something more serious may be occurring.

As for daily care, start by making sure that your lens case is very clean. Wash it out daily and let it air dry in a clean place. Change the solutions every day. Be sure you are not just using saline to clean your contacts.  You need a product that disinfects as well as cleans the contacts to prevent eye infections.  In addition, discard the contacts according to the schedule advised by your eye doctor. Finally, NEVER sleep in your contacts as this greatly increases your risk of developing a severe infection called a corneal ulcer.

Dr. Mark E. GermanIf your goal is to wake up with clear vision in the morning and avoid taking the time to properly care for your contacts, then you might want to consider seeing my colleague Dr. Martha Jay about LASIK vision correction. As for avoiding problems such as infections and injuries, you may be surprised to learn that we see far more problems in contact lens patients than in those who have had LASIK.

Dr. Mark German is an Optometrist at Lakeshore Eye Care Professionals with offices in Mequon & Saukville, Wisconsin. He specializes in first time contact lens fits and those with challenges such as astigmatism or exploring bifocal contact lens options. For more eye care information, visit www.LakeShoreVision.com or call 262-241-1919.


CATARACTS & MACULAR DEGENERATION By Dr. Martha Jay, Ophthalomologist at Lakeshore Eye Care Professionals with offices in Mequon & Saukville, Wisconsin

By editor
September 2, 2014

Many people have both cataracts and macular degeneration as both conditions are more common later in life. Cataracts are caused by a clouding of the lens in the front of the eye and are treated with surgery. Macular degeneration is an aging change in the back of the eye.  There are two types of macular degeneration: “dry” and “wet.”  The dry type is less severe and may just be noticed during a routine eye examination. The more severe wet type usually causes blurred or distorted central vision. Sometimes the wet type is treated with injections into the eye on a regular basis.

If your vision is impaired by macular degeneration and you also have cataracts, you may wonder if having cataract surgery would be of any benefit.  A recent study in the medical journal “Ophthalmology” looked at this very question.  The study followed 800 patients and came to the conclusion that cataract surgery did improve vision in patients with all levels of macular degeneration.  Expectations should be guarded, however, about how much improvement could be expected.  The retinal is like the film of a camera, so if it is damaged by macular degeneration you cannot expect to get a perfect picture even with a perfectly clear lens.

Dr. Martha F. Jay

Martha F. Jay, Ph.D., M.D.

Every situation is different so the decision to proceed with cataract surgery is one that you make with the assistance of your eye physician.  While cataract surgery is a relatively quick and easy procedure, you want have reasonable expectations. We can thoroughly discuss your options and explain what visual improvement you could expect with cataract surgery the time of your next complete eye examination.

Dr. Martha Jay is a board certified ophthalmologist specializing in medical and surgical eye care including cataract surgery and macular degeneration care. For more eye care information, call 262-241-1919 or visit www.LakeShoreVision.com.


WHY VISUAL FIELD TESTING IS IMPORTANT By Dr. Martha Jay, Ophthalmologist at Lakeshore Eye Care Professionals with offices in Mequon & Saukville, Wisconsin

By editor
August 11, 2014

If you have glaucoma or are at risk for glaucoma, we have probably suggested that you return for a visual field test at least yearly. That is a test where you look into a large bowl-like machine and hit a clicker when you see small lights in your side vision. We generally have the technicians do the testing and then one of our doctors sends you a report about the results in the mail. At the same time we take a picture of your optic nerve in the back of the eye, called an OCT test.

While we don’t get many complaints about the OCT, some patients balk at the idea of the visual field test. Recent comments have been: “I’ve had glaucoma for years, why do I need this test?” Or, “I just had one last year, why do I need to repeat it?”

Dr. Martha F. Jay

Martha F. Jay, Ph.D., M.D.

Why is this test so important? Glaucoma is evaluated by monitoring several things: your eye pressure, the appearance of the optic nerve in the back of the eye AND your side vision. The idea of the visual field is to detect very small changes in side vision BEFORE you become aware of them so we can appropriately start or alter your glaucoma treatment. You can lose up to 40% of your side vision without it becoming obvious to you.

Should we notice small changes on the visual field, glaucoma is easily treated with eye drops. Laser or surgical treatments are also available if drops alone are not adequate.  No one should lose vision from glaucoma today with appropriate monitoring.       Now that you know how important this test is, you won’t be tempted to put it off.  As an extra bonus, we are now using an even quicker version of this test lasting only 2-4 minutes per eye, this is HALF the time it took before! Help us help you preserve your vision.

Dr. Martha Jay is a board certified ophthalmologist specializing in medical and surgical eye care. She welcomes patients of all ages into her practice and accepts most insurance plans, including Medical Assignment. For more eye care information, call 262-241-1919 or visit www.LakeShoreVision.com


BOARD CERTIFICATION IN OPHTHALMOLOGY By Dr. Martha Jay, Ophthalmologist at Lakeshore Eye Care Professionals with offices in Mequon & Saukville, Wisconsin

By editor
July 28, 2014

Most patients may not be aware if their doctors are “Board Certified” unless they notice a fancy plaque on the wall. But what does this mean exactly?

In ophthalmology, a “Board Certified” doctor has successfully completed 4 years of medical school and then another 4 years of an Ophthalmology Residency to learn the specifics of medical and surgical eye care. They are then challenged with a series of tests that take a minimum of three years to complete.  The first is an intensive written qualifying exam. This 250 question test has seven sections, each covering a different aspect of eye care. Each question requires knowledge of obscure as well as common eye problems.

Once you make it passed that by doing well in all seven sections (and many don’t), it is on to the oral exam a year or so later. Wisconsin doctors are tested in San Francisco.  Imagine the scene: scores of anxious young doctors sitting in the hallway of an upscale hotel. They are individually called into regular hotel rooms where an examiner shows them photos of eye problems and gives them some history. You are asked what you see, what you are going to do. “Are you sure? Is that so?” are common responses just to throw you off. The oral exam has 6 sections, again you must do well on all of them.

Dr. Martha F. Jay

Martha F. Jay, Ph.D., M.D.

I am very proud to say that all three Ophthalmologists at Lakeshore Eye Care (Dr. Jay, Cueto and Costakos) are Board Certified! But the certification only lasts 10 years. During that time, we keep informed about new aspects of care by attending medical education meetings and reading professional journals. The testing the first time is the most challenging, however. You can be proud of our doctors here, we sure are!

Dr. Martha Jay has been board certified in ophthalmology since 1994 and successfully re-certified twice since then.  She specializes in medical and surgical eye care including LASIK vision correction and small incision cataract surgery.

For more eye care information, visit www.LakeShoreVision.com or call 262-241-1919.


SUMMER AND BACK TO SCHOOL EYE CARE By Dr. Mark German, Optometrist at Lakeshore Eye Care Professionals with offices in Mequon & Saukville, Wisconsin

By editor
July 24, 2014

Summer has finally arrived!  The children are out of school.  We’re spending our time outdoors at picnics, swimming, boating, camping, biking, playing baseball and taking long walks.  During the summer we can plan vacations with the family to either view local sites or far-away places.  We look forward to July 4th celebrations and fireworks displays.

Shortly after we celebrate the birth of the United States, however, the department stores remind us that summer will end soon and ‘back to school’ sales become the topic of conversation.  The list of school supplies for each school and grade gets printed and parents flock to the stores to purchase them before the supplies run out.

Missing from this to-do list is the annual eye exam.  Since children continually grow, a yearly eye exam is recommended.  Glasses prescriptions change as fast as outgrowing last year’s school clothes.  If you are considering contact lenses for your child, summer is a good time for them to learn insertion and removal of the lenses since they are under no pressure to get to school on time.

Dr. Mark E. GermanCollege bound students tend to have a shortened summer as they head off to school by mid August.  Have they updated their prescriptions?  For contact lens wearers, are their backup glasses up- to-date?  We hope back to school sales should get parents thinking about back to school eye exams.  Call us now to schedule those important appointments.  Be sure your children are primed for success with clear vision at the start the new school year.

Dr. Mark German is an optometrist at Lakeshore Eye Care Professionals with offices in Mequon and Saukville, Wisconsin. He welcomes patients of all ages into his practice and accepts most insurance plans. Call 262-241-1919 or visit www.LakeShoreVision.com for appointments or more eye care information.


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