Article Date: 6/1/2008

Offer Patients the ‘Wow Factor’ With New Technology
Tech Connection

Offer Patients the ‘Wow Factor’ With New Technology

If you want to grow your practice, becoming high-tech is the way to go.

By Jacqueline Campisi, O.D.
Mystic, Conn.

WHEN I OPENED MY PRACTICE in 2003, I needed to find a way to stand out—to offer patients what I call the "wow factor." That's when I learned about the optomap (Optos Inc.). I was convinced this high-tech tool was just what I needed to help grow my practice.

The optomap allows doctors to inspect the layers of the retina and create a digital image without having to dilate a patient's eye. It allows me to detect early signs of diabetes, impending stroke, age-related macular degeneration, melanoma—and even Lyme disease.

The Boost I Needed

For me, investing in the optomap paid off in spades. Patients left my office saying, "I've never seen anything like this!" The word quickly spread and practice growth skyrocketed.

However, as more O.D.s purchased the optomap, I knew I had to introduce newer technology to maintain my competitive edge and keep patients coming back.

Focusing on the Cornea

During that time, LASIK surgery was growing in popularity. However, reshaping the cornea to improve vision was nothing new. I was already doing that with the aid of a topographer I'd purchased in 2000.

My instincts told me there had to be a less invasive technology that could achieve the same result as LASIK—and I was right. Newly designed computer software, called the WAVE Contact Lens System, enabled my topographer to digitally map a corneal image. I could perform corneal molding in my office, and have a lab manufacture a WAVE contact lens that would duplicate every meridian of the cornea. Advanced contact lens materials, such as Boston XO (Bausch & Lomb), allowed patients to wear the lenses to reshape their corneas at night.

In the morning, the patient removes the lenses and retains crystal clear vision all day. I prefer this approach to LASIK, because it's reversible and can be altered to suit older patients. Even better, these lenses have been proven to slow myopic progression in children.

High-definition Eyewear

As I approached my third year in practice, I began searching for a new piece of technology. My research led me to the Z-View Aberrometer (Ophthonix).

This Star Wars technology collects and processes data from the eye's higher-order aberrations to produce a customized prescription for eyeglasses. We use the data to create lenses that correct imperfections never before detected.

Because I was the only O.D. in Connecticut offering this technology, I promoted my practice on the local news as the first location to offer high-definition vision. Ophthonix quickly recognized my marketing prowess and opened doors for me to be interviewed for radio spots and additional newspaper coverage.

You, too, can receive the same exposure. Stay up to date on the latest technology and be the first to introduce it in your neighborhood. You'll attract new patients because of the "wow factor," and watch your practice grow. nOD

Dr. Campisi graduated from Pennsylvania College of Optometry. She's in private practice at Visions Sight and Learning Center in Mystic, Conn. You can visit her Web site, drcampisi.net.


Optometric Management, Issue: June 2008