Charles Bittel III, O.D., Inc.

Charles Bittel, O.D. Newsletter

Contact Lenses for Presbyopia

November, 2011
Charles Bittel III, O.D., Inc.


We hope you found the last newsletter on Progressives helpful or at least informative. But a few of you did remind us that they are definitely not for everybody. So what is a person who is sick of putting on and taking off reading glasses all day to do? Well if Progressives aren't your cup of tea, then maybe you should consider contact lenses? Even if you are 47 years old and have never worn a contact lens in your life, there may be hope yet for you to go out to dinner and read a menu without pulling out the dreaded drug store readers. Contact lenses are also not for everybody, but here's a little more information for you to digest if you're at all curious.

And Happy Early Thanksgiving to all our wonderful patients. You have given us much to be thankful for over the years and we wish you all a Happy Holiday!


Charles Bittel O.D.

Charles Bittel III, O.D.


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In This Issue
Featured Article
Presbyopia Contact Lens Options

So I should probably start by defining presbyopia. Basically presbyopia is the natural loss of the eyes' ability to clearly focus near objects. If patients have excellent uncorrected distance vision, they will likely begin to experience the effects of presbyopia between 40-45 years of age. The first concerns we hear are typically the inability to read a menu and the fact that one's arms are no longer long enough to read.


The 3 main ways to correct for the effects of presbyopia are: 1. Single-vision reading glasses       2. Multifocal glasses (Bifocal and Progressives) and  3. Contact lenses. In this newsletter we will focus on option 3.


The first presbyopia contact lens option is something called monovision. Monovision basically means that one eye is focused for distance viewing, and the other eye is focused for near viewing.  The brain will pay attention to the eye that is seeing better for the task that you are performing. If you are driving, the brain pays attention to the distance eye. If you are checking email on your iPhone, it will pay attention to the near eye. Previous non-contact lens wearers and current contact lens wearers are both candidates for monovision if near vision is a problem. Studies have shown that anywhere from 65-75% of patients that try monovision will ultimately be successful. 


In some cases where a patient has excellent distance vision in one or both eyes, they can get away with only wearing 1 contact lens in monovision.


The next contact lens option for presbyopic patients is a multifocal contact lens. Each contact lens manufacturer has their own design for multifocal contact lenses which in some way or another resembles a dart board, or concentric ring design. Basically there are alternating distance and near zones as illustrated below:

Multifocal contact lenses are tricky, but when they work they have an advantage over monovision in that the eyes are working together at distance and near, just as they have done for the first 40+ years of your life. Initial success with multifocal contact lenses is in the 30-40% range, but after a few follow-ups and adjustments they can be just as successful as monovision.

Flex Spending: This is the time of year where many of you are getting ready to spend your remaining flex account dollars. Glasses, contact lenses, and even LASIK do fall under the umbrella of flex spending accounts.
Optomap: Many of you are aware that we have a digital retinal camera that takes a detailed picture of the back of the eye. The retinal image gives Dr. Bittel a view of the back of the eye that he would not be able to see unless he dilated your pupils. We are recommending baseline photos for all new patients (even kids/teenagers) and for existing patients that have yet to take the pictures. This test is still not completely covered by insurance, but Dr. Bittel offers ALL patients the insurance discounted price of $39. 
Medical Insurance: Dr. Bittel now accepts most PPO plans as well as Medicare for medical office visits. If you have a red eye, allergies, or any other eye related medical concerns we are happy to help. If you have a PPO or Medicare, we will ask to make a copy of your card for our records.
Contact Lens Rebates: Many contact lens companies are offering rebates with the purchase of an annual supply of contact lenses. This can significantly reduce the price paid per box of contacts, especially when used in conjunction with vision insurance. Please ask us if your contact lens manufacturer is presently offering any rebates.
* Shipping to your home or office is FREE when ordering a year supply!
Glasses: Some vision insurance plans offer 20-30% off a second pair of glasses. If you need to update your primary care glasses but are interested in a second pair such as sunglasses or computer glasses, please ask us if your insurance offers these discounts. And remember your flex dollars!


About Us

Dr. Chuck Bittel (Senior) has been practicing in Yorba Linda for over 25 years. His son, Dr. Charlie Bittel (Junior) has been practicing in Yorba Linda for the last 5 years and has just joined his father's practice full-time.


Learn more about Dr. Bittel Senior and Junior and about their practice on their website and Facebook page. Also visit the blog for Computer Vision Services to learn more about Computer Vision Syndrome.


For appointments call 714-779-8521

Charles Bittel III, O.D., Inc.
20399 Yorba Linda Blvd.
Yorba Linda, California 92886

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next Optomap pictures!           

"Check In" on Facebook at the time of your exam and receive $10 off your Optomap retinal images (normally $39).  Simply advise the front desk that you have done so and we'll apply the discount on your way out!
Offer Expires: Enter 09/30/12