Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Spanish Cataract & Eye Surgery Help

Providing cataract, eye surgery, eye disease and eye care problem information in Spanish is recognized as an important part of today’s eye health and vision patient education process. According to results from the Los Angeles Latino Eye Study (LALES), Hispanics have higher rates of developing visual impairment, blindness, diabetic eye disease, and cataracts than non-Hispanic whites. The risk for glaucoma in Latinos is four times higher than it is in whites, and three times higher in Latinos who have siblings with glaucoma compared to those without any family history of glaucoma. Most importantly, the study found 75 percent of the Latinos with glaucoma were unaware of their eye disease, and almost half of all Latinos with diabetes had diabetic retinopathy.

“Recently, the American Academy of Ophthalmology launched a Spanish eye health web site to help combat eye disease in Hispanic communities,” remarked Fairfield County Cornea, Cataract & LASIK Surgeon Leslie Doctor, M.D. “This is a pretty good indication of how important it is for us to provide Spanish language information about eye diseases, eye surgery and eye health conditions that have a higher predilection for the Hispanic community. From our reception desk to our associate Ophthalmologists, we have simply integrated Spanish speaking staff to make these discussions about cataract surgery, diabetic retinopathy and glaucoma that much more effective.”

“At The Eye Clinic of Texas, we too have a number of staff members on our clinical team who routinely educate patients about their eye problems or conditions in Spanish,” added Bernard Milstein, M.D. a Galveston and Houston Cataract & LASIK Surgeon. “We tend to be pretty fluent in Spanish presentations about their eyes and especially when we are discussing eye surgery such as cataract surgery and lens implants, LASIK or glaucoma treatment. Even for routine eye exams for Houston patients, if we can help patients be better patients by engaging them in clinical decisions we find it to be quite beneficial.”

“Our practice serves a south Florida population that draws cataract patients from throughout greater Ft. Lauderdale, Miami and also Palm Beach County,” noted Ft. Lauderdale Cornea, Cataract & LASIK Surgeon Ray Gailitis, M.D. of Ophthalmology Consultants. “We have Spanish speaking staff members well trained in patient education for those who prefer learning about LASIK in Ft. Lauderdale in a familiar Spanish language discussion. Now, as more and more of our cataract surgery is being performed with astigmatism correcting toric lens implants as well as near vision correcting multifocal lens implants, our need to provide patient education and counseling for our cataract surgery patients in Spanish has increased quite a bit as well.”

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