Workplace Eye Wellness Month / Focus on Eye Donor Awareness
It is uplifting to consider one might give the gift of eye sight to someone less fortunate. There is a website that showcases many of the “catchy slogans” used to solicit your registration as a donor. Allow me to quote several: “Celebrate the Gift of Sight – Register, Recycle, Restore.” Or consider this one: “One Eye Donation Can Make Two Blind People See.” The following link provides additional entertaining slogans: https://images.search.yahoo.com/yhs/search?p=eye+donor+awareness+month+images&fr=yhs-pty-pty_email&hspa
Quite a bit can be inspired and accomplished with a great quote or slogan. The one used by AAO is “Protecting Sight. Empowering Lives®” It is so true that empowerment awakens the conscience and stirs up motivation and energy. But if the eye-sight of the donor is not protected, the donation might not occur. Purchasing and using good eye gear is one way to protect your vision. Eye protection can prevent particles in the air from entering your eye, sometimes harmful debris can be flying through the air, not to mention use of or working around chemicals. Consider what you do for your skin when out in the sun - the use of lotion is a given, but eyes can also be harmed if the rays of the sun are too strong. A good pair of “shades” is a vital part of any fashion statement.
What if you don’t plan to visit the Division of Motor Vehicles soon but want to register as a donor? You can accomplish this by going to the website organdonor.gov. You can select which state you live in and you can decide for yourself which organs you want to donate.
https://www.organdonor.gov/register.html?gclid=EAIaIQobChMI-fmBof-O4QIVkp-fCh1IqA-1EAAYAyAAEgLPL_D_BwE. Try it out and see what you learn.
Taking donor awareness further, how do you envision the transplanted eye? Is it the whole eye or a part of it? AAO tells us that whole eyes are not transplanted at this time (although there is a group of researchers hoping to perform this within 10 years). This is because the optic nerve is what communicates with the brain and there are more than 1 million tiny nerve fibers to connect. Instead it is the cornea that is transplanted. A corneal transplant is a procedure that has been used for more than a century. Other transplants related to the eye are amniotic membranes which can be grafted on the surface of the eye or used as a dressing or bandage. Eyelash transplantation has also occurred and this is great news for those have suffered burns. Lastly, there is now more hope for those suffering from macular degeneration and Stargardt disease as researchers are replacing damaged retinal cells with healthy transplants. https://www.aao.org/eye-health/treatments/transplantation-eye
EPS is proud of our own eye transplant surgeon – Dr. Jeffrey Minkovitz. Dr. Minkovitz takes care of cataract surgery, LASIK vision, as well as many corneal issues.
Protect your vision because when you can’t see very well you suddenly realize that it means to be handicapped. Empower yourself and family by gathering and sharing good information. Above all – make and keep your routine eye appointments. You never know what your ophthalmologist will find at your exam – the good part is that early discovery of vision concerns make for better outcomes.