Complex contact lenses keep disabled vet rolling
Teamwork Saves A Child's Vision
UAB program opens doors to drivers who are sight-impaired
Protect your eyes: A baseball player's story
UAB pilot program brings glaucoma screenings closer to home
  • UAB identifies functional biomarker for age-related macular degeneration

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    Adults whose eyes are slow to adjust to the dark have a greater risk of developing age-related macular degeneration, according to new findings from the University of Alabama at Birmingham published online in Ophthalmology. AMD is the leading cause of blindness in older adults in the United States.

  • Downs receives a second R01 grant to study glaucoma

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    J. Crawford Downs, Ph.D., has received a four-year, $1.88 million grant from the National Eye Institute to further explore the underlying mechanisms of glaucoma and bring the relationship between age, intraocular pressure and glaucoma development into focus. This award is in addition to a three-year, $1.23 million grant Downs received in May 2015 to investigate the role of intraocular pressure fluctuations in glaucoma.

  • Eye site offers new insight on age-related macular degeneration

    ProjectMacula Curcio

    Over the past 14 years, Christine A. Curcio, Ph.D., a professor in the UAB School of Medicine’s Department of Ophthalmology, has collected images from hundreds of donor eyes in her search for the basic mechanisms underlying age-related macular degeneration. AMD is the leading cause of severe vision loss and legal blindness in Americans age 60 or older, affecting up to 15 million people in the United States today and almost 200 million people worldwide by 2020. As the population ages, those numbers will only increase. AMD occurs when the central portion of the retina, known as the macula, deteriorates. But the exact cause is unknown, and new treatments are desperately needed.

  • Understanding how glaucoma can impact driving ability

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    Glaucoma is a leading cause of irreversible blindness among older Americans, characterized by optic nerve damage and associated visual field defects. Despite its significance in public safety, the association between glaucomatous visual field loss and motor vehicle collision has been unresolved.

    However, a recent retrospective, population-based study by MiYoung Kwon, Ph.D., assistant professor in the UAB Department of Ophthalmology, and her colleagues showed that older drivers with glaucoma are at increased risk of involvement in an at-fault motor vehicle collision compared to those without glaucoma.

  • UAB study looks to improve medication adherence in African-American glaucoma patients

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    Researchers at the University of Alabama at Birmingham are hoping a telemedicine-based health promotion intervention can improve medication adherence rates among older African-Americans with glaucoma. Glaucoma is the leading cause of irreversible blindness among African-Americans, who are more than three times more likely to develop glaucoma than are Caucasians.

  • UAB Renews Vision for Renowned Sculptor Frank Fleming

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    Vision is precious to all of us, but for people who are especially oriented toward visual stimulus, or whose livelihood is dependent upon exceptional visual acuity, healthy vision has perhaps a deeper significance. UAB Medicine patient and Birmingham artist Frank Fleming can attest to that.

  • End-of-Summer and Back-to-School Eye Safety

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    August is Children’s Eye Health and Safety Month, which emphasizes healthy vision for children by encouraging eye examinations to detect vision problems, and by preventing eye injuries at home and at school.

  • Dreer participates in panel discussion about concussions

    Laura Dreer, Ph.D., associate professor of ophthalmology, will participate in WBHM’s Issues and Ales panel discussion on Thursday, July 23, from 5:30-8pm. The topic is “Concussions and the Price of Playing Football.” Much of Dr. Dreer’s clinical research focuses on head injury, and she is chair of the Alabama Statewide Return-to-Learn Task Force, which aims to develop guidelines about when it is safe to return to school or work after a concussion. She will discuss specific strategies that can be used to help promote concussion awareness, prevention, and recovery.

  • UAB study finds that seniors in subsidized housing have higher rates of vision impairment

    Older adults living in subsidized housing facilities have higher rates of vision impairment than their peers, according to a study from the University of Alabama at Birmingham Department of Ophthalmology.

    The findings, published in The Gerontologist, were based on vision screenings for 238 residents of 14 federally subsidized senior housing facilities in Jefferson County, Ala. Forty percent of those surveyed failed distance vision screenings, and 58 percent failed near vision screenings, considerably higher than the rate of visual impairment in the general older adult population, which is typically between 10 and 20 percent.

  • Grandmother’s vision struggle motivates young woman to make a difference

    Curcio Owsley AseemAs a young girl in Afghanistan, Fazila Aseem watched her grandmother struggle to complete daily tasks independently due to vision loss. Her grandmother was unable to see well enough to prepare a simple meal for herself, and there was nothing Afghan doctors could do to restore or repair her vision.

  • A lifetime of insights gained from a few hours without sight

    For 23 diners in Birmingham last Thursday, Dinner in the Dark was a real eye-opening experience, especially since the diners were blindfolded. The event gave sighted individuals some understanding of what it means to be visually impaired.

  • UAB researcher awarded $1.23 million grant for glaucoma research

    Downs newwebJ. Crawford Downs, Ph.D., vice chair of Research in the University of Alabama at Birmingham Department of Ophthalmology, was awarded a three-year, $1.23 million grant from the National Eye Institute to explore intraocular pressure fluctuation as it relates to the development and progression of glaucoma, a potentially blinding disease that affects more than 2.2 million Americans.

  • UAB faculty to participate in visual rehabilitation symposium

    UAB faculty members MiYoung Kwon, Ph.D., assistant professor of ophthalmology, Cynthia Owsley, Ph.D., M.S.P.H., professor of ophthalmology, and Kristina Visscher, Ph.D., assistant professor of neurobiology are speaking at a Visual Rehabilitation Symposium hosted by the Atlanta VAMC Rehabilitation Research and Development Center for Visual and Neurocognitive Rehabilitation and Emory University Eye Center on Wednesday, May 20, 2015.

  • Grytz receives glaucoma award from BrightFocus

    Grytz SamulesRafael Grytz, Ph.D., associate professor, received the Thomas R. Lee Award for Glaucoma Research from the BrightFocus Foundation recognizing his grant, “Quantifying Collagen Remodeling of the Optic Nerve Head”, as the second-highest rated proposal received by the National Glaucoma Research Program in 2015. The award was presented at the Association for Research in Ophthalmology and Vision Science (ARVO) annual meeting on Monday, May 4, 2015. 

  • Compassionate neuro-ophthalmology care

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    Jennifer Doyle, M.D., a graduate of the UAB Department of Ophthalmology residency program, wrestled with the same tough decision that confronts many medical trainees. She’d known since a 10th grade shadowing project that she wanted to be a doctor, but what kind of doctor was a harder question to answer.

    An Arkansas native, Doyle attended medical school at the University of Arkansas. Her first exposure to ophthalmology was when she worked for the Arkansas Lions Eye Bank & Laboratory during medical school. For three years she helped procure recently donated eye tissue for transplant and research.

  • Young Scientist Makes Strides in Reengineering the Eye

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    For research pursuits, Rafael Grytz, Ph.D., has always blazed his own trail. That may explain how a civil engineer from Germany became as an assistant professor in the UAB Department of Ophthalmology.

    Grytz applies to the eye principles he first learned as a civil engineer studying shell structures, such as church domes or cooling towers of nuclear power plants. Early in his career Grytz realized he wanted to pursue biomedical research. Having graduated at the top of his class, he earned the chance to choose any area of study for his doctoral research. He made the unobvious choice and selected the eye, specifically diseases that impact the structure of the eye, such as glaucoma myopia and keratoconus.

  • Colorful Agam sculpture returns to Callahan Eye Hospital

    by Bob Shepard

    “Complex Vision” has returned to its place on the side of the Callahan Eye Hospital at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. The kinetic sculpture, originally installed in 1976, was taken down for restoration last April. The sculpture was created by famed artist Yaacov Agam, often called the father of kinetic art.

    “Alston Callahan, the founder of the hospital and the primary force behind acquiring ‘Complex Vision,’ had a passion for art, and a passion to help people with eye disease,” said Brian Spraberry, CEO of Callahan Eye Hospital. “He wanted to give them an experience that they could appreciate.”

  • J. Waid Blackstone, M.D., joins faculty

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    J. Waid Blackstone, M.D., joins the UAB Department of Ophthalmology as an assistant professor. Dr. Blackstone, an alumnus of the UAB Ophthalmology residency program, has more than ten years experience as an eye care specialist. Dr. Blackstone is a member of the American Academy of Ophthalmology, the American Medical Association, the Alabama Academy of Ophthalmology and the Medical Association of the State of Alabama.

  • Ocular biomechanics expert joins faculty

    Fazio webportraitMassimo Antonio Fazio, Ph.D., joins the UAB Department of Ophthalmology as an assistant professor. Dr. Fazio holds a joint appointment in the Department of Biomedical Engineering. As a mechanical engineer, Dr. Fazio has dedicated his career to developing customized methods and non-contact optical techniques to measure deformations in loaded materials to gain a deeper understanding of the biomechanical properties of ocular tissues. His work is currently focused on investigating how intraocular pressure (IOP) drives structural changes in the eye in relationship to age, race, and ocular diseases like glaucoma.

  • As glaucoma cases soar, researchers focus on solutions

    Lindsay Rhodes

    Ernest Murry saw glaucoma steal his mother’s vision, just as it had robbed sight from many other family members. There was a time when it seemed the same might happen to him. “When I went outside to walk, I would have to pat in front of me to keep from falling,” he says.