Treatment for Macular Degeneration in Raleigh-Durham NC Area

June 29, 2014

There are several highly qualified Ophthalmologists in the area trained to treat Wet Macular Degeneration.

The Duke Eye Center
2351 Erwin Rd,
Durham, NC 27705
(919) 684-6611

The Raleigh Eye Center
3320 Executive Dr
Raleigh, NC 27609

NC Retina Assoc.
5107 Southpark Drive
Suite 201-B
Durham, NC 27713

Kelly Eye Center Brier Creek
8851 Ellstree Lane
Suite 200
Raleigh, NC 27617

Remember to discuss the comparative value of injections of Lucentis and Avastin. Pazopanib, a new drug still under development, can be administered as topical eye drops. The active molecule in Pazopanib works to prevent irregular blood vessels and subsequent bleeding under the macula. If this medication is proven effective in subsequent clinical studies and is approved by the FDA, patients with macular degeneration may be relieved of the nightmare of receiving monthly eye injections.

Currently there is no effective medical treatment for Dry Macular Degeneration. Special vitamin cocktails such as AREDS2, not smoking and wearing Amber tinted glasses can sometimes help. But the best help comes from various assistive technologies, such as electronic magnifiers. The NC Assistive Technology Center can give advise, demos and perhaps loaners. Since Medicare does not provide monetary support, check before you buy. There are many alternatives.

NC ATP Center
2801 Mail Service Center
805 Ruggles Dr.
Raleigh, NC 27699-2801
Lynne Deese, 919-855-3519


Smartphone App Could Replace Seeing Eye Dogs for the Visually Impaired

June 21, 2014

LONDON, June 16, 2014 /PRNewswire/ — EYEBRIDGE ( ), a first-of-its-kind mobile app from EyeBridge Limited, will provide 27/4 on-demand remote visual assistance for people who are blind or otherwise visually impaired. Within thirty seconds of opening the EYEBRIDGE app, a live operator connects to the customer and his or her smartphone’s rear-facing camera, ready to provide video assistance with everything from navigation and product identification to written word interpretation or device operation. As a blind EYEBRIDGE beta tester commented:  “I travel a lot and locating power outlets or figuring out climate controls in hotel rooms is often tricky, and EYEBRIDGE could be a very useful solution.”

The EYEBRIDGE app in development will be available on both Android and iOS platforms and connect via Wi-Fi and mobile networks. Individual customers and corporate employers will have a variety of subscription plans from which to choose starting from £19 ($29) per month for sixty minutes of remote visual assistance. EYEBRIDGE technology is also forward-thinking: the app is fully compatible with Google Glass, and will no doubt be adaptable to further advancements in wearable devices.

EyeBridge is a Silicon Roundabout start-up founded in 2014 to provide on-demand, remote visual assistance for blind and visually impaired customers via their mobile device. Using the EyeBridge platform customers can connect via mobile video with trained staff who can assist with tasks such as internal and external navigation, product identification and product operation. The WHO estimates there are 285 million blind people worldwide.

For more info:

Frustration at the Apple Store

June 15, 2014

The following is by Lauren Tappan.

 I am still in search of a small, hand-held, portable AT unit.  I want to be able to take a picture of text and have it read to me. The Smart Phone screen is too small for me to read so I thought that I would have a better chance reading an I-Pad screen.
I went to our local Apple store and was told that our local Apple store has a blind employee who can help me with Apple AT solutions.   It was almost impossible to find out this gentleman’s name and when he planned to be at the store.
After much effort,we met him at the Apple store only to discover that he was not able to demonstrate the AT aps for low-vision users as they are not installed on the floor models.  The only recommendation he could make was that I purchase an I-Pad costing
around $499 and then come to ther classes for I-Pad users.
It is hard for me to consider paying $499 and somehow downloading an AT ap and then struggling back to the store for classes when
I don’t know  if I can read the text and the navigational tool bar. I don’t know unless I can see the screen in person
read Whether I can the text or not,  transportation is always an issue for people with low-vision and the thought
of trying to make it to store on a regular basis is daunting.
The Apple Store staff were very accommodating and did the best they could with what limitations were imposed on them. It seems that Apple is missing the boat for us low-vision customers.  It would be very helpful if Apple could  make their blind employee
more accessible to potential low-vision  customers.  It would have been more helpful if  this young gentleman was able to show
me his  I-Pad aps and demonstrate to me how easily he is able to navigate through the system. I think that  any informed AT program has to include Apple products along with other Vendor devices but how do we do it when it is so impossible to see them in person?