Welcome to the October 2010 edition of At-A-Glance, Lighthouse International’s low vision newsletter. October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month. Enjoy our feature article on helping people with disabilities find employment. 


Featured Story

Lighthouse International Helps Employers Hire People with Disabilities with New Book, "Perfectly Able."

According to a new study by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the 2009 employment-population ratio, which is the proportion of the population that is employed, was only 19 percent for persons with a disability. Among those with no disability, the ratio was 64 percent.

These statistics reflect the magnitude of employment challenges facing people with disabilities, such as low vision or blindness. With October being National Disability Employment Awareness Month, Lighthouse International seeks to help companies hire talented people who have a vision impairment by promoting our new book, "Perfectly Able: How to Attract and Hire Talented People with Disabilities."

Written by former Lighthouse International contributor, Jim Hasse, "Perfectly Able" educates companies on the benefits of hiring disabled employees. "Someone who is disabled is just as capable as someone who is not [disabled]," said Barbara Frankel, Director of Career and Academic Services at Lighthouse International. "Studies have shown that people with disabilities are often more loyal employees, more dedicated to their jobs, and have similar job performances."

In these difficult economic times, it’s imperative that people with disabilities are given the same opportunity to succeed as everyone else. Visit Lighthouse International for more information on our Career and Academic Services.

Technology Corner

Questions Remain over FDA Approval of Implantable Telescope

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration announced it has approved a new device, the Implantable Miniature Telescope (IMT), for patients suffering from end-stage age-related macular degeneration (AMD). IMT is a small telescope that replaces the eye’s natural lens and provides a magnified image. The device is surgically implanted in one eye in order to restore the patient’s central vision, while the other eye is untreated and used for peripheral vision. IMT, which is manufactured by VisionCare Ophthalmic Technologies Inc., is only used in patients over the age of 75.

Even though IMT has been approved by the FDA, questions still remain over the device’s side effects. "The company manufacturing the intraocular telescope raises some serious concerns for users of these telescopes," says Dr. Bruce Rosenthal, Chief of Low Vision Programs at Lighthouse International. "They state that implantation of the IMT may result in: double vision, decreased peripheral (side) vision, decreased contrast sensitivity, difficulty seeing in dim and bright light, as well as having a magnified image in one eye and a normal image in the other eye."

"Therefore, one of the concerns that need to be addressed is the decreased depth perception that results from having a large image in one eye and a normal image in the other eye in those implanted with the IMT," says Dr. Rosenthal. "This is an especially serious concern since the scientific literature reports that vision loss is a leading cause of falls in the elderly. Further research and clinical-based evidence [is needed to] substantiate whether the risks far outweigh the benefits in the use of the IMT."

Ask The Expert

Every month, Lighthouse International’s staff of industry leading experts will answer your vision related questions. Visit the Ask the Expert form to submit your questions for next month!

Q: I have started seeing spider-web-like figures floating across my right eyeball. Is this something that will pass or should I be worried about this?

A: If the white spot in the corner of your eyes is located on the actual eyeball itself, it is most likely a pinguecula or pterygium .... Read on for the answer to this question and the rest of October’s Ask the Expert selections.

Product of the Month

clock photo - link to productThe Lighthouse Store is your source for the latest products that can make your day-to-day life easier. Offering a vast selection of helpful, vision-friendly products, the October product of the month is a TimeVision Low Vision Alarm Clock with a large 1.8" LED display. This TimeVision Clock is one of our best sellers!



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