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Key insights from Academy 2023 New Orleans

Our optometrist, Heather, has just returned from the world leading optometry event, Academy 2023 New Orleans.

Some of the best minds in optometry, vision science and research gathered for four days of continuing education and research insight at the American Academy of Optometry’s annual meeting.

The benefits of a holistic approach to eyecare was a hot topic throughout the conference whilst notable product discoveries included an innovative nasal spray treatment for dry eyes that works by triggering the trigeminal nerve to produce tears.

More findings were presented on the effectiveness of antioxidant vitamins and minerals in helping to slow the progression of age-related macular degeneration (AMD). The Age-Related Eye Disease Study (AREDS) found that patients diagnosed as being at medium or high risk of progression of AMD, who took the "AREDS formula" reduced their progression by 25%. Whilst AREDS do not reduce the risk of developing AMD, diet is important at ALL stages of AMD. A high GI diet increases the risk of developing AMD as much as smoking and genetics. Research also showed that including fresh vegetables and fish regularly in your diet slows the progression of AMD.

The potential of retinal imaging to detect a range of different conditions was also explored during the conference. An OCT (optical coherence tomography) scan uses light waves to take cross-section pictures of the retina and is currently widely used to help identify eye diseases such as glaucoma and age-related macular degeneration. However, recent data has suggested these 3D eye scans could help to identify people at high risk of developing other neurological conditions up to seven years before they have symptoms.

Here at Auerbach & Steele, we offer the option of an OCT scan during your eye examination. To book an appointment with Heather or another member of our expert optometry team, just click here.