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Welcome to the Ophthalmic Photographers' Society Blog! The posts on this blog are authored by a myriad of individuals in Ophthalmology. Posts are not always authored by those directly affiliated with the Ophthalmic Photographers' Society and opinions may not be those of the OPS; however, all posts are submitted to a review process and have been approved by the OPS before being posted. Comments are open to the public. New posts are added every Friday, so make sure to check back often!


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My First Internship Experience

Posted By Joyce Kasab, Friday, August 19, 2016
Updated: Friday, August 19, 2016

After spending four years in snowy Rochester, New York, a summer in North Carolina is quite the change of pace. As a student of the Biomedical Photographic Communications major at RIT, a co-op or internship requirement was my last requirement to fulfill before officially graduating and entering the workforce. Sarah Moyer, an RIT alum, graciously agreed to take me on as an intern this summer at the prestigious Kittner Eye Center at UNC Chapel Hill. Because UNC is such a teaching and research-based institution, I knew that the opportunities to observe and learn would be great. Thanks to the innovative clinical studies and patients traveling from all over the state, I was finally able to apply my academic studies and image a wide variety of pathology, ranging from macular degeneration to Stargardt’s Disease, on all types of instruments. It has been thrilling to implement my knowledge in a real-world clinical environment, where my actions directly impact and help patients every day.


 Patient care is vital to ophthalmology, a field with a high amount of geriatric patients. After imaging over 200 patients in just 5 weeks, I’ve realized that the top three essentials to providing a positive experience are patience, clarity, and comfort. An ophthalmic imager must be calm and patient, which puts the patient at ease. This allows the patient to ask you questions so they are not in the dark about their own medical care. Clarity is a skill I’ve honed over time- when I first began speaking to patients, I would quickly speak in detail about the test. As I’ve continued working, I’ve learned what the patients want to know most, and whittled down my pre-imaging "spiel” to the essentials, speaking slowly and clearly. This ensures they aren’t overwhelmed by the information I’ve just given them. My final realization is that a comfortable patient is a happy one. If the patient is struggling physically or emotionally, it will affect their cooperation with the imaging.

In college, I learned about and practiced with mydriatic fundus cameras and one spectral domain OCT machine. When I got to the Kittner Eye Center, I was trained on two OCT machines, in addition to a non-mydriatic, a mydriatic, and a widefield fundus camera that I now use on a daily basis. I was also exposed to anterior segment OCT, corneal topography, specular microscopy, full-field and multi-focal ERG, slit-lamp imaging, external photography, visual fields and even animal imaging. My biggest struggle on the mydriatic fundus camera was adjusting my working distance to avoid artifacts in my images. As for the widefield camera, learning to hold patients’ eyelids and achieve the largest field of view was something I had never done before, and proved to be challenging. There are so many instruments being utilized every day by the rest of the imaging staff, and through careful training, I have been able to expand my technical skills and knowledge. While learning these new processes can sometimes be frustrating, I have learned to take mistakes in stride and continue to ask questions. No one starts off perfectly, and remembering that has been both humbling and encouraging.


As I wrap up a very hot but wonderful summer here at UNC, I’d like to thank Sarah Moyer, Houston Sharpe III, Rona Esquejo-Leon, Debra Cantrell, and the rest of the Kittner Eye Center staff, faculty, residents, fellows, and patients for being so welcoming and supportive. I am sincerely appreciative and grateful for everyone who has helped me get here, and cannot wait to take the next step into the world of ophthalmic imaging.






About the Author: Joyce Kasab is a recent graduate of the Rochester Institute of Technology Class of 2016, majoring in Biomedical Photographic Communications. Originally from Long Island, New York, she is interning at the UNC Kittner Eye Center in Chapel Hill, North Carolina until August 2016.

Tags:  blog  education  Internship  Kittner  Meaningful Use  New Life 

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ICOP- the tradition continues

Posted By Paula Morris, CRA, FOPS, Friday, June 17, 2016
Updated: Friday, June 17, 2016

Once upon a time there was a brilliant and talented group of ophthalmic photographers in the U.S. who were on a quest to improve their skills and build their fledgling profession.  A society had already been formed which was dedicated to furthering their field and educating ophthalmic photographers about new instruments, new techniques, and what the role ophthalmic photography would take in the practice of treating patients with eye disorders.

But this intrepid group understood that if wonderful new things were being developed and were happening in North America, even more could be learned from photographers across the globe! 

So they set out to establish a meeting that would bring together international practitioners in this new profession of ophthalmic photography to exchange ideas, learn alternatives, and expand their collective knowledge.  This dedicated team, which included OPS members Don Wong, Marlene Fishman, Larry Merin, Albert Aandekirk, and Sadao Kanagami, produced what was called the first International Meeting and Technical Workshop in Rome, in 1986. It was a tremendous success as a common meeting place for imagers from North America, Asia, Europe, the United Kingdom, Australia, and New Zealand.

And thus the international meeting that was soon to become known as the International Conference on Ophthalmic Photography, ICOP, was born.  It was decided that such a large undertaking was could not be accomplished often, so the tradition of holding ICOP meetings every four years was started.  And it was also determined that the meeting needed to move around the globe in order to give better access to photographers from different hemispheres.  The result has been a delightful collection of exciting meeting venues:













San Francisco









And now, dear reader, ICOP consists of collaboration between four imaging societies:  the Ophthalmic Photographers’ Society, the Ophthalmic Imaging Association of the UK, the Australian Institute of Medical and Biological Illustrators, and the Ooghelkundige Fotografie Nederland – Ophthalmic Photography Netherlands.  Each group brings their expertise, knowledge, and enthusiasm for ophthalmic imaging and it has been a very successful partnership!  Yes!  Some venues have been visited twice, and happily, ICOP will return to Singapore next March, 2017!  The tradition continues!

The Singapore National Eye Centre has graciously agreed to host the next ICOP at their wonderful facility.  A three day meeting of lectures, scientific papers, exchange of ideas, and comradery with old and new friends and colleagues is planned – a wonderful educational experience in a beautiful setting.  What more could one want?  There is no better way to start globetrotting than to build your journey around an outstanding educational program!

OPS members have already received a "Save the Date” notice via email, and the ICOP website link is coming soon with information about the meeting schedule, the excellent venue, accommodation, registration, and the delightful city of Singapore!  Start planning now!

Tags:  2017  education  Educational Meeting  ICOP  Singapore  Special Events  Travel 

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Fort Worth + Foodies = “GastroTour”

Posted By Brittany Jackson, CRA, OCT-C, Tuesday, May 10, 2016
Updated: Tuesday, May 10, 2016

A what?  A Gastro-Tour!  It’s just so much more fun than sitting in one restaurant for the whole meal, after all, you’re visiting a new city and you’ve got a chance to explore, right?  So this a great way to make the most out of your trip!  Your accommodations for the Mid-Year Program are located in Fort Worth’s West 7th District, which makes for a perfect location to restaurant hop.  So bring on the Gastro-Tour!  

West 7th is one of Fort Worth’s "Restaurant Rows”.  I highly recommend getting together with friends and doing a gastro-tour in this easily walkable area of fun, refreshing and new urban development. Here’s how it works: Pick one restaurant for appetizers, another for your second course or appetizers part II, your third location for the entrée and a fourth for desserts.   

When my husband and I restaurant hop, we always share the food on small plates and enjoy a cocktail.  Most of our servers want to skip their shift and join us as we venture to a handful of places and explore the menu of 3-4 area restaurants. This was our most recent Gastro-Tour:  

First Stop: Times Ten Cellars – they source grapes from Napa Valley and ferment on-site in huge steel tanks, visible from the "tank room”. We sat in causal oversized upholstered chairs with and oversized coffee table and enjoyed the Cabernet Franc with a selection of cured meats and cheeses.

Second Stop:  Waters Restaurant.  This is a fine dining establishment with an incredible seafood menu, but we just go straight to the bar! No reservation or tie needed.  We grabbed two chairs and small pub table near the big windows facing Crockett Street while we indulged on the ridiculously decadent lobster stuffed avocado and a glass of pinot grigio.

Fred’s Texas Café (Featured on Diners, Drive-ins and Dives) –  We shared a cheeseburger with our choice of fixins’ made to order, skipped the fries, and washed it down with a small soda or draft beer.

Tillman’s Road House– Table side S’mores and decaf coffee – Yes, we saved the best for last! The chocolate bars, graham crackers and flavored marshmallows (orange, maple and coffee flavored) are all made in house. Served with skewers and a small table top flame, you toast them and assemble your classic campfire treat.

Other great places for the adventurous foodie:  Mash’D, Kona Grill, FW Market + Table, Velvet Taco, Rodeo Goat, Salsa Limon, Thirteen Pies, and Terra Mediterranean.  

If you’ve got time for a brunch, make sure you pick Max’s Wine Dive, a short walk from the hotel.  

This small, bistro style pub is a go-to place for Brunch. It has a great wine and champagne list and even better food, as it is famous for its low and slow fried chicken, with (brace yourselves) a glass of champagne.  The two actually pair amazing well together.  Max’s slogan of "Brunch without champagne is just a sad breakfast” has never been so true.  Definitely order the fried chicken but get the Tiramisu French toast as an appetizer to share while you await for the fresh made fried chicken, and it’s also available gluten free. I suggest making a reservation via Open Table or call ahead!

Enjoy your trip to Fort Worth and leave with a happy and full belly. See you at the Mid-Year!

Tags:  2016  blog  cute  education  Educational Meeting  Fort Worth  Interactive  Mid-year  PDC  Special Events  Texas  Travel 

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A Mid-Year Vendor Forum

Posted By Stuart Alfred, CRA, OCT-C, Friday, April 29, 2016
Updated: Friday, April 22, 2016

Of my many identities:  partner, dad, photographer, healthcare provider…there is one identity:  consumer, that is among my lesser favorites.  It implies somehow giving up on a duty or chore.  Except as an OPS ‘consumer’. The modicum of money I spent is much more an investment than an expense.       

The Mid-Year meeting for example, what value and purchasing power. In my experience Mid-Year meetings have tended toward easily accessible.  Yet!  fewer days on my calendar expended. The somewhat longer annual programs can be …turbulent.. in comparison.  The Mid-Year offers a stellar line of global speakers, on facets wide ranging, in one room.  Someway I find the condensed nature provides a more relaxed environment.       

Some brilliant OPS volunteer or board recently came up with the idea to create a vendor forum– allowing me unconstrained access to vendor reps, instruments, all while providing CECs for the face time!  If you aren’t familiar with this new vendor forum, not familiar with these industry leading reps., shake hands with some fountains of support!      

At the Mid-Year meetings you need to be prepared...  These vendor colleagues are leaders in the industry competition, or Clinical Application Specialists, they know clinically how we implement our devices.  Therefore they share techniques with us we may not be aware of.  How can this service exist in our otherwise fettered consumer interactions:  because the majority of them has years of service in clinic roles precisely like ours, and serve as vibrant OPS members.      

My Institute administration will thankfully ask me to weigh in on new instruments and modalities; now back to being a ‘big’ consumer.  Vender Form is the place to bring that exact administration inquiry from your practice. Get business cards and pass requests for demos. You are now in the driving seat for major financial investment at the backing of your physicians.  You consume, but, in fact support your reps careers and that vital industry.      

It can be said I’m a consumer of these vendors and their talented and generous personnel.  Name another ‘product’ where year after year the ‘seller’ supports your learning at an OPS level?  ZEISS Meditec and Greg, Gary and Kevin Langton. Then Dale Brodsky at Fundus Photo, LLC, S4OPTIK, Heidelberg Engineering, Optos, Topcon, Optovue, Regeneron, Sonomed Escalon Nidek ​and the list goes on.    

In Ann Arbor 2015 –and as planned in Ft. Worth 2016 - the Vendor Forum provides a small group of 5 random attendees a rotation through all the visiting vendors one table at a time: Heidelberg Engineering , Zeiss… are all currently slotted to bring their newest technologies and teams.   We in effect purchase these structured and accredited times to pick their brains while they pick ours.    

These orchestrated meeting are just the first royalty check.  During the meeting’s breaks, all of lunch, after hours at the watering hole, these rock star representatives become friends.      

Our profession and society are unique in many ways.  The reps and CASs we enjoy allow us ongoing support, encouragement and training with not much effort from ourselves.  Why is that?     

To describe vendors as valuable assets in an understatement.  Like we innovate in our clinics, they innovate at their HQ, much of it based on our feedback to them.  A vital, valued and –obviously- symbiotic relationship.

Tags:  2016  blog  education  Educational Meeting  Fort Worth  Interactive  Meaningful Use  Mid-year  PDC  Special Events  Texas  Travel 

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KEYNOTE SPEAKER: OPS Mid-Year Educational Program, Fort Worth TX, May 13-14, 2016

Posted By Brittany Jackson, CRA, OCT-C, Friday, April 1, 2016
Updated: Friday, April 8, 2016
The Ophthalmic Photographers Society is incredibly excited to announce the Saturday, May 14th, 2016 Mid Year Meeting Keynote Speaker,  Dr. Alan Kimura from Colorado Retina Associates in Denver, Colorado.

"Restoring Vision by Replacing and Engineering Cells: The Promise of Stem Cells & Regenerative Medicine” by Alan Kimura, MD, MPH.

Date:  Saturday, May 14, 2016 11:15 – 12:15pm
Fort Worth Botanic Gardens
Dorothea Leonhardt Lecture Hall

Dr. Kimura is a member of the American Academy of Ophthalmology and serves as one of a handful of oral board examiners in the Western United States. He is also a member of ISCEV, ARVO, AAO and other professional organizations and continues an enthusiastic involvement with research pursuits as a co-investigator in many studies, as Medical Chair in Denver for the Foundation for Fighting Blindness and his numerous publishing and authoring endeavors.   

A wonderful contributor to previous OPS Educational programs, Dr. Kimura is a gem that we are beyond excited to welcome back for what we know will be a fantastic lecture in terms of dynamic and new content, infused with Dr. Kimura’s unique and enthusiastic style of public speaking.  He’s an entertainer, folks!

Dr. Kimura attended the World Stem Cell Summit in Atlanta, Georgia in December of 2015 and has designed his talk to comprehensively cover the latest and greatest pearls of wisdom and discoveries from the recent Summit.  The course will review of the science behind stem cells research in the field of ophthalmology.  A review of the translational research into restoring vision will also be presented as well as a discussion on society’s role in regulating stem cell research.


Stem cell advancements are a key component of advancing medicine for the treatment of visual loss.   With Dr. Kimura’s Keynote address we know all attendees will have a better understanding of the science behind stem cell research and the advancement efforts to use stem cell technology to begin to restore vision loss.  

The OPS Board of Education is proud to offer this exciting program that was designed to cover the "Future of Medicine” with 16 OPS Credits and 13 JCAHPO-A Continuing Education Credits during this two day Educational Program.    

Don’t miss out on this event -> Register Today!

Tags:  2016  blog  education  Educational Meeting  Fort Worth  Keynote Speaker  Mid-year  PDC  Texas  Travel 

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