May 11, 2009 |
Most Wednesday afternoons are painful. That is when I work with resident physicians in the glaucoma clinic of Wills Eye caring for patients, sharing experiences I have had during the last 40 years. Because many patients who come to the clinic cannot see well enough to make it there on their own - glaucoma is the leading cause of irreversible blindness in the world and even in the United States - they often are brought here by friends or relatives, sometimes even by a grandchild.
October 28, 2013 |
Imagine a bathtub with the faucet running all the time. When the drainpipe gets clogged, the water backs up in the tub. When the drain completely closes, the water collects until it overflows the tub. The analogy is imperfect, but that's sort of what happens in glaucoma, the leading cause of irreversible blindness. Poor drainage causes fluid buildup in the eye. Except that the eyeball, unlike a tub, is a closed structure, so fluid pressure builds up, harming the sensitive optic nerve.
December 24, 2000 |
It was a beautiful day; summer had just turned to autumn, the sun shined brightly, and the sky was a cloudless blue. Only one heart-wrenching thought crossed Melissa Gomes' mind as her husband navigated the family car through the city streets after a visit to the Scheie Eye Institute. "Such a pretty day, and I was just hoping that Miles would be able to see a day like that one," Melissa said. Wayne Gomes vividly remembers the painful emotions of that sunny afternoon. "We cried a lot that day," the 27-year-old Phillies relief pitcher said.
May 11, 2001 |
The other day, Miles Gomes' parents found him under the bed. Testing his newly found crawling skills and eager to explore the world, Miles skittered right underneath where his mommy and daddy sleep. He's at that curious stage, a typical 8-month-old who grabs for everything and anything, and who squeals in delight at life's daily discoveries. "He's a miracle," Melissa Gomes said, expressing the same sentiment felt by every parent who gazes upon his or her personal bundle of joy. Except there is a deeper meaning in the case of Miles Gomes.
February 11, 2000 |
Wayne H. Dunn had a very personal reason for becoming an eye doctor. Growing up in Jamaica, he saw two of his grandparents suffer progressive sight loss from cataracts and glaucoma. "They became virtually blind," said Dunn, 37, who now lives in Wallingford, Delaware County. "I initially got interested in the field because of what happened to them. " Dunn had other personal incentives for studying ophthalmology. Both his parents suffered from diabetes, an illness that often causes eye disease as arteries deteriorate from its effects, he said in an interview this week.
April 18, 1996 |
Minnesota Twins outfielder Kirby Puckett yesterday underwent the first of what may be a series of operations to stave off the effects of glaucoma. Bert Glaser performed the operation at the Retina Institute of Maryland, which is part of the St. Joseph Medical Center in Towson. Puckett, a 10-time all-star who has not played this season, first complained of poor vision during spring training. It turned out that blood vessels feeding the retina in his right eye became partially blocked because of increased pressure caused by glaucoma.
January 5, 2001 |
Celestine White has something in common with baseball great Ted Williams, the last man to hit above .400 for a season. Like Williams in his prime, White has outstanding 20-10 eyesight. This was news to the 56-year-old, who yesterday received a free eye exam in a makeshift clinic in the lobby of the Life Center of Eastern Delaware County, a homeless shelter wedged along Upper Darby's border with Philadelphia. "I don't remember the last time I had my eyes checked," White said.
January 24, 1993 |
The U.S. Postal Service will issue a 29-cent Black Heritage Series commemorative Friday in Chicago for Percy Lavon Julian, an Alabama-born chemist who helped discover drugs for the relief of glaucoma and arthritis. Julian (1899-1975) was the son of schoolteachers, though his father later worked as a railway mail clerk. He graduated from the State Normal School for Negroes in his home town of Montgomery, Ala., and enrolled at DePauw University in Greencastle, Ind., living in the attic of a fraternity house that hired him as a waiter.
June 30, 1999 |
Lucille Washington is 79 now, and her husband, Edward, is 90. They live in a rowhouse in Southwest Philadelphia. She has glaucoma; they both have arthritis. They worked all their lives - she as a nurse, he as a court clerk - but they weren't in unions and don't have private health plans, and today, they are among an estimated 15 million Medicare recipients who don't have any prescription-drug coverage. All their prescription expenses are out of pocket. And like most retirees, they are on fixed incomes: part Social Security, part pension.
December 18, 2011 |
Fifteen years ago, when Nani and John Chong had an opening for an optometrist at their Center City optical boutique, they wanted Dr. B. Herbert Behrmann had a following. Patients raved about his calm instructions and corny jokes. After refracting thousands of glasses and contacts, Behrmann's old-school training and precision awed younger admirers. Dr. B was 75. He'd survived World War II and managed care, outlived two wives, and witnessed seismic changes in his profession, but could see no reason to stop working.