Living with Glaucoma :Tips and innovative technology solutions

Living with Glaucoma :Tips and innovative technology solutions

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Rebecca Clark -Quantum: I think we'll get started, so thank you everybody for joining our webinar today, which is living well with glaucoma tips and innovative solutions. innovative technology solutions, and this World Glaucoma Week Quantum is delighted to be partnering with glaucoma Australia to bring you this webinar. We have Sapna Nand, Orthoptist educator with Glaucoma Australia, who will be presenting today and talking about.

glaucoma and how Glaucoma Australia support people, and we also have Gillian and Saarah here as well, and we have Rob Drummond. Business Manager and Senior Low Vision consultant from Quantum who will be talking about how aids and different equipment might be able to help you if you have got low vision, so my name is Rebecca Clark and i'll, i'll just do a quick introduction so. First of all, I'd like to acknowledge the traditional owners of the land from which this webinar is being presented.

and pay my respects to elder's past or present and for me it's the Darug people of the Eora nation and if if you're in Australia, and you know where you you're the lands which you're on then feel free to put that in the chat. And so just a bit of webinar housekeeping if you've not joined our any of our webinars before your microphone will be muted, but. We will have a question and answer session at the end, and if you do have any questions to put them either in the Q and A area which you can click on or tab to. there's also you can put them in the chat which the keystrokes so that is Alt+H if you are ou are a windows user or command K if you're a MAC user. And if you've got any technical difficulties you can also put that in the chat and I'll monitor that and we are recording the webinar so that will be made available by YouTube link after afterwards. So just a bit of an overview of today's session,

first of all we will have a presentation by Sapna Nand who is an Orthoptist Educator with Glaucoma Australia and she's also a qualified Orthoptist and has been in clinical practice for many years and then we'll have a presentation by Rob Drummond. explaining how Quantum can help with Low vision aids and different things, and how that can help you and then we'll have time for question and answers so. I will now hand over to Sapna, and she can begin her presentation and tell us about Glaucoma and Glaucoma Australia, so thank you Sapna Sapna Nand - Glaucoma Australia: Thanks Rebecca so we'll just get our presentation started so good morning everyone it's World Glaucoma week and it's great to be able to join in this morning to raise awareness of the condition. So, today I will go over some facts about glaucoma and we'll have a look at the risk factors types of treatments available and lifestyle tips on living with glaucoma. Okay, so we'll start off with a short video to better understand the impact Glaucoma can have over time. (Music playing) So what is Glaucoma, Glaucoma is the name given to a group of it diseases, where the vision is lost due to damage to the optic nerve.

As you can see from the previous video the loss of sight is gradual and a fairly large amount of sidede vision may be lost before there is an awareness of any problem at all. Unfortunately, there is no cure and vision loss cannot be reversed, our aim is to detect and start treatment to prevent any further vision loss from there on. When looking at numbers 2 in 100 Australians will develop glaucoma in their lifetime, you are 10 times more likely to develop glaucoma if a direct relative has it and 50% of people with glaucoma don't know that they have it.

It is estimated that over 300,000 people in Australia have glaucoma. But only half of them are actually diagnosed. Out of those diagnosed only half adhere to their treatment and appointments, which increases their risk of losing vision. Out of those undiagnosed half are totally unaware that they are at risk of glaucoma. Okay, so we'll have a look at another video next where we have real glaucoma patients sharing the experience what how they felt when they were first diagnosed.

How do you feel when you were first diagnosed with glaucoma and how do you feel now. I can't really remember how I felt. I was disappointed. the idea of it makes me nervous .When I was first diagnosed with glaucoma I really didn't have a clue. Was was a very big shock shock to the system, I was scared confused because I didn't know what it was, I felt pretty upset. I didn't know if it was anything that I had done to cause glaucoma you know of course there's a time that you feel sorry for yourself, you have to go all through the emotions and now. I know better there's great things out there, great technology and medication now to help you, I think the idea of getting onto early has given me a confidence that.

There are options I've been very blessed with good health, and I can cope with the glaucoma. Sapna Nand - Glaucoma Australia: So, good news is that with early detection and with the correct treatment and management plan you can save your site from glaucoma. Okay we'll have a look at what actually causes it.

So the eye is constantly producing a clear fluid called the aqueous humour this fluid just sort of rotates within the eye. This fluid nourishes the eye and holds the eye in shape. the fluid is then drained out in an area, called the anterior chamber angle, or the drainage angle, if there is damag to the drainage angle, the rate at which the eye produces the aqueous humor. Then becomes greater than the rate that the eye can drain it, and this is where high pressure builds up so if you think of a sink the blocked drain the water will keep rising unless the drainage system is cleared and starts working again.

So this increase in pressure begins to damage the optic nerve, which lies at the back of the eye. The optic nerve is made up of approximately 1 million nerve fiber layers which connect the back of the eye to the brain. Damage to the cells to the optic nerve resulting irreversible damage to your eyesight. Okay, so glaucoma is usually caused by an increase in intraocular pressure or we say IOP, or eye pressure which can damage the optic nerve.

Normal eye pressure is between 10 to 21 but, having eye pressure within this range does not mean that you can't get glaucoma. The level of elevated eye pressure which causes progressive damage to the optic nerve does vary between people as well, so people who have glaucoma should not compare their eyeI pressure to somebody else. They can end up stressing out and thinking why the other person has a lower high pressure to themselves, and each person is different and the level of eye pressure they can tolerate is different, as well. Some people can have a high pressure and actually not have glaucoma and we know this is ocular hypertension. while other people can have normal eye pressure and have glaucoma in that is normal tension glaucoma. All forms of glaucoma treatment, will aim to reduce the pressure to a level that is safe for that person so each glaucoma patient will have a different target eye pressure.

Okay, we'll look at the risk factors of glaucoma. Okay anyone may develop glaucoma but the incidence does increase with age 1 in 10,000 babies are actually born with it, and by the age 40, 1 in 200 have glaucoma this rises to one in eight by the age 80 Other risk factors are being of African or Asian descent, having diabetes and being very long or short sighted if you've been on long term use of steroids treatment. If you experience migraine have history of eye injury or operations, if you have a history of high or low blood pressure and if you have experienced obstructive sleep apnea. Family history is one of the main risk factor of glaucoma then if there's a family history of full crema than regular I checks should start 5 to 10 years earlier than the age of onset of the affected relative.

And then also you've got thin corneas Thin corneas can give the impression of having a lower pressure than what actually is, and then we mentioned it increases with age and then this high pressure as well, but wanted to remember that we do have low, low in normal tension will come as well. To check if you at risk of developing glaucoma you can head to Glaucoma Australia website to do a quick and simple quiz. The quiz results can let you know if you are at risk of glaucoma and also advise you on how often you should be getting checked for it. Now there are two main different types of glaucoma. You've got open angle and that's 90% of cases in Australia.

And this is where the drain of the eye is wide open and the damage is usually caused by high eye pressure, then you've got closed- angle glaucoma which is around 10% of cases this is where the drain of the eye is narrow and that's just how they people are born with it. Now glaucoma cannot be self detected, only an optometrist or ophthalmologist can determine whether you have glaucoma or not. Glaucoma Australia recommends all Australians age 50 or over to visit an optometrist every two years for a full eye examination.

If there is a family history of Glaucoma or if they have Asian and African descent, it is recommended to get eyes checked every two years from the age of 40. There are a few different tests that need to be done to diagnose glaucoma and. So we'll just go over those ones here so we've got obviously eye pressure, then we've got something called Gonioscopy, which is to inspect the drainage angle of the eye. And then we have to have a look at the optic nerve at the back to determine the damage of you know if there's any damage done to it and that stand on slit lamp, which is like a large microscope. visual field test to test the central and

peripheral vision something called an OCT scan, which is actually a computerized picture of the optic nerve and then the thickness of the cornea that we spoke about before. Now, although there is no cure for glaucoma most people are able to manage their condition successfully with the use of eyedrops laser treatments surgery or any combination of all three. The purpose of glaucoma treatment is to lower eye pressure within the eye to prevent deterioration of the optic nerve which causes vision loss. It is important to know that treatment can prevent vision loss, it cannot restore sight that's already lost to it, which is why early detection is so important.

Okay, so let's see what our patients have to say about how hard it is to treat and manage your glaucoma how hard, is it to treat and manage Glaucoma? Not hard at all Well I don't think the treatment is very difficult, I think that's a very individual individual case by case situation I don't believe it's hard it's not that difficult Its pretty easy actually Its been relatively easy. to manage and treat Each case is individual You get tests pretty much every year every six months, I have field tests every six months, I get the eye pressure checks pretty regularly Once every three months I go to the opthalmlogist. Just check in with your doctor regularly Mum has special drops which help keep her pressures down. it takes less than a minute, as long as you stick with the medication you're given drops in the morning,drops in the evening, which decrease your eye pressure, It just something you do every day you clean your teeth every day you wash your face every day Treating it and managing it I think it's very easy to manage you put your drops in every day, not a problem. Okay, glaucoma eyedrops is the most common form of treatment for glaucoma eye drops work in two ways to reduce eye pressure so they reduce the amount of fluid actually made by the eye and then they also help increase the outflow of increased fluid from the drainage angle. Approximately one half of patients do not take

their kind of medication as prescribed increasing the amount of visual loss cause glaucoma since glaucoma often has no symptoms, people may be tempted to stop taking or may forget to take the medication or eyedrops. If you have any concerns about eyedrops speak to your health care professional or call Glaucoma Australia on 1800 500 880 Then we've got laser treatments so different lasers are used to treat open and close angle glaucoma. there's SLT and it's generally useful for open angle glaucoma to reduce eye pressure, then we've got something called an iridotomy it's for narrow close angle to reduce the risk of an acute angle closure, so an acute angle closure attack is a sudden rise in eye pressure Which is a medical emergency. And then we have glaucoma surgery. Surgery may sometimes be required if the disease cannot be controlled using medications or laser. Or the patient is intolerant of the laser or the eye drops, the requirement for surgery becomes more urgent and what the more aggressive or advanced the glaucoma becomes.

The three main types of surgeries we've got going is Trabeceulectomy; there's a whole group of surgeries called MIGS and that's minimally invasive glaucoma surgery, and then we've got the glaucoma drainage devices. Okay, so we'll have a look at another video and from some that patients about a question that has worried many at risk and diagnosed with glaucoma which is "Do you worry about going blind?" Do you worry about going blind? not really, yes, of course, yes, of course I wouldn't worry and then I wouldn't care yes and no. I don't think about it I think it's always in the back of your head well I think it's the probably biggest fear of any human being no it doesn't occur to me very much. Yes, very much so so I'm going blind, it's a fact I've done a few little tests myself by finding my way around the home with my eyes closed.

I couldn't picture being blind be so frightening to me Going blind obviously completely changes your life. I know that i've already lost some peripheral vision in my left eye I do my very best to keep my vision The key is early awareness, catching it early treating it early i'll do everything I possibly can to look after my eyes Regular checkups listen to your doctor I've had all the tests, I get them every year I don't miss my drop, so I don't miss my appointments I don't miss my field tests just manage it as much as you can and be mindful of any change whatsoever, you must look after your eyes. Okay, so glaucoma is a lifelong condition, we need to ensure patients are comfortable with everyone in the support network, and they are confident about the decisions made regarding the eye health. It is important to have trust in the expertise of your eye care professionals, so that you understand and adhere to treatment and management plans to save the health of your eyes and maintain your quality of life. Right so let's have a look at the health care team involved in patient care for glaucoma we have an ophthalmologist an optometrist we have a pharmacist a GP or general practitioner, and then we've got the orthoptist.

The ophthalmologist is known as the eye doctor or the surgeon. or the eye specialist and they are trained and registered to provide eye care of eyes from performing comprehensive eye examinations to prescribing lenses they diagnose the disease. And also carry out medical and surgical. procedures, so your ophthalmologists are the only providers of laser and surgical correction of eye disorders such as glaucoma.

OK, so the optometrist is usually the first person to flag that a person has Glaucoma and most people who get referred over to Glaucoma Australia, they had their glaucoma picked up at a regular eye examination with the optometrist and most people. link the optometrist with glasses, but optometrists have a unique role in providing accessible and vital eye care to the community. And they can monitor the glaucoma they can prescribe an eye drops, if needed, but they usually work together with the ophthalmologist in a shared care plan for glaucoma patients.

Right and then we've got the orthoptist and while not many people don't know what an orthoptist is, many have been helped by one The orthoptist is usually the first eye care professional you will see when you go for your appoinments with the eye specialist so they're the people who will do all the testing and before you see the eye specialist. Traditionally orthoptists work with eye movement disorders, but they also work in low vision clinics and rehabilitation and research centres as well. And then we've got our pharmacist, and so the pharmacist they're the experts on medications and drugs. Pharmacists can now also help with glaucoma screening because they some of them do have the equipment to check. Eye pressure at the pharmacy as well, and they can also help patients increase adherence to treatment by discussing about the glaucoma drops and the side effects of it.

A glaucoma patient can see the pharmacist for purchasing the eye drops, if they need help with instilling the eye drops so to go over the correct techniques and to learn how to use aids for glaucoma eyedrops installation. If you have questions about other medications interacting interacting with look him eyedrops if they have questions about how will come eyedrops can affect their other health conditions. If they need help choosing things like lubricating eyedrops for dry eyes, assistance with lid hygiene and leferitis, so your pharmacist can help out with quite a few things. And then we've got the GP, which is a family doctor they usually the first person to go to if you have a health issue and they have a broad knowledge and skills to treat all health issues throughout the patient's life. The GP can provide a referral to see a specialist and they can coordinate the shared care plan between several different health professionals .Glaucoma patients can go to the GP for a new script of the glaucoma drops, however it's important to remember that your

GP does not have the equipment that the optometrist or ophthalmologist has to determine. whether a treatment is working for you. So, at some point you do need to go back to your eye Specialist to ensure that the drops that you are getting from the GP is still the correct ones for you. Okay now. So Glaucoma Australia is also here to support you,

and if you haven't done so please consider joining up to start receiving free education and support on glaucoma. Our purpose is to improve the lives of people with glaucoma and those at risk by increasing early detection and positive treatment outcomes through education. advocacy and research we empower individuals to take an active interest in and understand their own eye health and we promote research, innovation and work with eye care health professionals. Alright, so here's a list of common topics of discussions that we come across over our freehelpline and online support groups and vitamin B3, yoga and glaucoma, weightlifting and swimming, impact of caffeine on eye pressure, deciding about laser or surgery If eyedrops have stopped working for you, if you have side effects of eyedrops. recovery after surgery, so what to expect before and after and then COVID vaccinations and glaucoma. Alright, so we'll just go through a couple of diet tips, that can be beneficial for glaucoma because optic nerve health depends on Healthy blood blood vessels ,as well food that helps to maintain blood vessel health is likely to promote visual health so a diet that is reducing saturated fats, if you can increase the intake of vegetables and fruits, which are rich in vitamin A and C green leafy vegetables, carrots berries citrus fruits and peaches, I guess foods such as peaches not just peaches.

caffeine is also thought to increase the production of fluid within the eye, so if you can limit to your intake of coffee two to three cups a day so maximum of 340 milligrams of caffeine is still considered high for a person glaucoma. We often get asked questions about vitamins and supplements that are beneficial to eye health so apart from fish oil supplements. vitamin B3 has also shown to help, there is still ongoing research, but it has shown to protect the optic nerve cells and possibly preventing glaucoma, so please speak to your pharmacist about your suitability for taking vitamin B3 and follow the instructions on the packaging.

Okay, so yoga is a hot topic on our helpline every person with glaucoma wants to do Yoga these days advice is for those with glaucoma who like to practice yoga is to avoid the downward dog position as that can increase eye pressure and we do have a glaucoma safe video. on our website if you'd like to have a look at it. For those who like swimming, swimming goggles have shown to increase eye pressure. When they are on. So the larger snorkelling goggle type that would sort of sit on the bones around the eye are safes as the smaller ones

can sort of press on the eye and increase eye pressure as well. And there's also evidence suggests that regular to moderate exercise that is brisk walking or jogging can reduce eye pressure which could be beneficial for people with glaucoma. Yes, as mentioned before it's easy to join in, to our services and start receiving the free support and education. To help in the journey with glaucoma so you can go on our website and join in, or you can also just call up 1800 500 880 and then we can help you with the process from their own. Okay, so each person that enters our patient support journey receives individually tailored phone calls and emails we support people through all stages of glaucoma from new suspects to learn to long term diagnosis. We can help you prepare for the upcoming

appointments discussing outcome of recent appointments and we also provide ongoing support for those who have high anxiety. So here's a few ways to get in touch with us, with a free support line and our website is full with resources and articles. We have a 24 hour web chat on the website as well we've got SMS you can email us, and then we also have some support group set up online, so you have to go through our Facebook for that.

we've got the Glaucoma Australia Facebook support group and then we've got a congenital glaucoma one for families with kids with Glaucoma and then we also have instagram pages well. Alright, so a little bit more about our support groups, so our Glaucoma Australia support group currently has more than 1200 members. Our congenital group, although it's around 260 members it's still the largest in the world, so that type of glaucoma is rare. And so that's a really nice supportive group we've got there. Our support groups are available 24 hours it's private and secure and it is regulated by qualified health professionals.

So patients, supported by Glaucoma Australia I have shown to have 92% adherence rate to their appointments and eyedrops. And they're compliant with their treatment they have shown to have reduce anxiety and they have also shown to have increased understanding of glaucoma and it also feel empowered to be in control of their glaucoma. Right, thank you for listening in. Please feel free to contact Glaucoma Australia, if you have any questions regarding the information

provided in this presentation. Rebecca Clark: Thank you for that Sapna that was great as a lot of information there and we've got some questions coming already but we'll we'll answer those in our. question and answer session so now we're going to hand over to Rob Drummond who's going to talk about.

different aids and how Quantum might be able to help for those who might have low vision due to call glaucoma or whatever and other conditions as well, but yet, with specific reference to glaucoma today. So Rob is our senior low vision consultant, and business manager and ha .been seeing lots of people to help them with vision aids for a long time, so how long is it now Rob? and has a background in optical dispensing Rob Drummond: Alright, okay thanks Bec and thanks Sapna for that insight into glaucoma a lot of the information that we just heard there is often I guess is either not known or is often.

not understood by people and one of the most important things with anything to do with your eyes is just to make sure if you've been given some sort of treatment plan. Please just make sure you do follow that. So I'm going to present some of the products from. our fairly vast range of low vision aids that would specifically help people with glaucoma. Now glaucoma is not the only eye disease is out there, of course, a lot of people would have heard of macular degeneration. Perhaps diabetic retinopathy, retinitis pigmentosa all sorts of other eye conditions and all the eye conditions, no matter what they are, are linked to this sort of general term we use, which is called low vision. Low vision is , to put it into some sort of perspective, is basically when glasses don't help any more. glasses may still be of assistance but they're not going to provide you, necessarily the amount of vision clarity of vision that you're required to do certain tasks so that's what we can step in with some of these products and help you out so just in terms of.

on that. These products i'm going to mention them because it's going to be fairly general. What we are going to be doing, though perhaps on a one on one with individuals and actually dig into exactly what's happening for that person and that's really the take home part of today. you know part of it is yes, there is a range of products that can certainly help. But because there is such a range it's very important that we sit down have a chat with people and figure out exactly what works. Not only to overcome that problem, but perhaps.

that problem in a different environment. So just because we need to be able to read something you know, maybe reading something at home is going to be different, the reading something so when we're out and about and shopping so. What we're doing, as I say,is fairly general. But yeah please contact us at some stage and have a deeper conversation. Alrighty, so the first thing we can do is look at how we can change what's naturally there, so if I pick up a magazine, for example, I can simply put on my glasses and magically I can read it. Now we've got pretty good lighting here in our showroom, but if I wanted to see this i'm really struggling to see

just regular print in a magazine. I must have my glasses, the other alternative is that I go outside in the sunlight and I can read newsprint and magazine print quite comfortably, and the reason for that is it's nothing particularly magical about sunlight other than it's really bright. So being really bright means there is good contrast between the print and the background that it's printed on, and I can emulate that some degree inside my getting the right sort of lighting and again there's a variety of these, but if I turn this light on here. And if I position it correctly I can now actually read this reasonably well just because we got that nice bright light there The importance of a lightthough, is that the light in this situation is quite close to the page. And if we take that further that light further away from the page the brightness level on the page actually decreases we can't quite see it so well. So many of these lights have got the ability to be adjusted for for height and d position and also you don't want that light shining into your eyes when you're reading, so you can turn that away so the lights there and it's nice and comfortable.

So good lighting is very important in the early stages. The next part is perhaps we're starting to see that That fine print is getting harder and harder to see so maybe we need a magnifier and many people might have seen something similar, and this is optional, with the lightt you can buy the light and get the magnifier later, but now I can just hold that. magazine, on the other side of the magnifying lens and that's coming up now magnified roughly not quite two times with. it depends where you hold it, but the good thing now is I've got two things working for me, one is the light.The other thing is the magnifier. So that's great, that's plugged into the mains so you can't really take that shopping with you, you might like to have one in your walker , for example in your handbag, in your back pocket or something like that, so there are portable magnifiers and, for example. there's a magnifier such as this one here. This one's quite a weak one that's we know its weak just because it's large, just like the

magnifier on that light I showed you a moment ago. If we go to a stronger magnifier typically they are smaller. Not always but normally that's the case. Both of these have lights available and that light again gives that contrast and the bit of magnification helps you out when you're reading, but obviously a lot more portable and might suit you better, for you know, some situations. Rebecca Clark -Quantum: Can you angle that at the camera.

Rob so we can see the print. Rob Drummond: I can do that, so a. bit of an it might be like. yeah okay. Okay, so, as you can see there when, if I get the magnifier too close there is not a lot of magnification but if I pull it up to the the right level, then we start getting magnified maybe one and a half to two times something like that. These sorts of magnifiers .not a lot of difference, actually, but what we've got now is something that's on a stand. So if you've got problems holding the other magnifier in just the right position the stand now holds the magnified in just the right position and we still have the light sources available there and it might be a bit hard to see on on this one. But you can get to see there that you've got

almost the column width of that magazine article in your field of view and this magnifier again fairly large it is weak it's about a two times magnifier. So those are the sorts of things that you can get in the early stages. I should also show that there's some things; people like doing craft and going to. little craft groups and things like that this is a portablerechargeable.

magnifier with light. So I can just sit there up on a table and maybe you can do whatever it is, you need to do it underneath. And it's also got. The lights there which are surrounding the lens so again i'll just use the magazine as an example. But you can just place things underneath that that's probably too bright.

But you get the idea. Same sort of thing, and I can just give you the ability. With your your hands with craft work. To work underneath it. So quite a handy thing. They can go for 2 or 3 hours, or something like that just on a single charge. Okay, so those are things that you might be familiar with you know good lights and magnifying glasses, now the sorts of things we can do is to use electronic magnifies. And they're available in quite a variety of

different formats and forms and it's all to do with the sorts of things you want to do and pretty much in the way you want to do them, these days, we have very large variety. So for something if you wanted to if you're out shopping. And you wanted to check, you know the details on yeah whatever this is some pasta sauce, I can just put the magnifier. This electronic magnifier directly on top and that's the very small print there of the ingredients that's on the side of this jar so something like this one's nice and small relatively thin. And this gives you the ability to you know, for gents pop it in your top pocket perhaps or in the handbag or whatever, but that's a nice easy way of seeing something. Now the electronic ones have got a couple of advantages.

If you recall, when we had the magnifying glass we. You can change the vision of what , or the image what you're looking at with movement of the magnifying glass, sometimes that can be distracting and a little bit hard to deal with. With the electronic magnifier as long as you've got an image on the screen. In some ways it doesn't matter where you hold it it's just sitting in this case flat on the page and that image size is now stable. So that's a lot easier to readily recognize something.

The other thing we can do with electronic magnifiers is change the print size. And that's important. If you think of a book or a menu that might have acertain print size and probably larger than you might find in a magazine or a newspaper so. we're starting to look at products like we just showed a few moments ago, so having the ability to vary the amount of magnification means that you just got the ability to see better or more information on the screen. The other thing electronic magnifiers can do is. You can also change. The contrast. So contrast is very important, with these devices and particularly with glaucoma. A lot of people in the very early stages, with

glaucoma might benefit from a magnifier but theywill benefit, first of all from good lighting. And secondly from high contrast or different color contrast, so this magnifier at the moment is just looking down at this regular black and white print.But now it's turning into black on yellow. Or, as I was showing before other colors so it's blue prints on a black sorry white background. yellow on blue.and blue on yellow, green on and black on

green etc so it's quite a range that's available and some of these are the color schemes are actually more comfortable and indeed easier to see for people so. Having the ability to not only vary magnification but also to change contrast is very important. And these electronic magnifiers as I say are available in a variety different sizes to suit different environments. So the first two i've showed you is a three and a half inch screen the little one here this last one was a six inch screen.

There is a seven, this one is a ten and you can imagine, with the biggest screen to get a lot more information on the screen and this one behind me is one with a 24 inch screen and that might be useful, because you want to see a whole variety. much bigger field of view or they might like to. read a book. And then we've got some different contrasts

and with glaucoma sometimes you're lucky enough to be able to read with the lowest magnification. Which means you get a nice big field of view and there's the full width of the page across the screen, so I can sit back, albeit at a desk, but you can sit back and read fairly, naturally. So the everything I've shown you so far is to do things visually quite often and could be for a whole variety of reasons, but quite often people do like the idea of being able to listen to things and lots of people have heard of talking books well we've got devices that can actually read things to you. From the paper. So, for example.

This little device here. So it's about size of a couple of biros I guess and there's some buttons down one side, but at the pointy end as it were there's a camera.So if I point this camera. At the page. And press a button.

It takes a picture of the page (Orcam Read heard speaking) And now it starts reading to me. So the ability to have pretty much any printed material read to you, means that no matter what situation you're in in terms of the degree of vision loss or, for that matter, the amount of ligjht that's available to you, to be able to see, or whatever degree magnification you might have. In some ways doesn't matter. Because all you know is you've got this device You can just. quickly take a picture and you listen to. (OrCam Read heard speaking "now I am retiring" ) Rob: so turning text to speech. is a wonderful thing, these days, and when you can pop it in your pocket or wear it around the neck on a lanyard just means that you can have it anywhere.And, and this sort of technology is becoming

now a lot more , well, very accessible very lightweight portable but it's turning up in other devices as well, so. This larger device I showed you a few moments ago, the 24 inch screen, you can get that, together with the speech component as well, so it can do two things for you. Much in the same way as some of these smaller devices can do it also. So that's just very briefly what is available to help people specifically to help them with glaucoma and reading and doing visual tasks So once again, good lighting in the right position, have some magnification with make magnifying glasses, or even the electronic ones, and then, lastly, the ability to have text read to you Those are the different ways we can help you and just a matter of being in touch with us, so we can discuss what might best suit you in your environment. Rebecca Clark that that was a great overview so yeah I'll just briefly share my screen again so yeah now we've got time for questions, so we have got some that people had submitted earlier and some that are in the chat and I think. Sapna's already answered some of those are provided information but yes i'll i'll just get hold of the questions that were submitted, and we will go through go through those and hopefully provide some answers.

Now there are a couple for Glaucoma Australia and Sapna probably here so somebody had asked is there a device to make administrating administering the eye drops easier for people with limited hand function? Sapna Nand : Yes, we do so, we have eye drop aids and some are quite brand specific but they're all sort of depend on what size, their bottle is and what brand of eyedrops they have. So all they need to do is just it is available on our website as well, but if you just call that help line number,so 1800 500 880. And just let the person, on the other side know exactly which drops, you have and the size of the bottle and then they can arrange for it to be sent out to you. Thank you, and I think it, yes, you have already answered this one, but somebody else what type of support groups there are available so that is it just the Facebook one. We have the Facebook ones, because obviously anyone from anywhere in the country in the world, instead of joining. And it's active daily and pre- covid we did have

face to face support groups, so we were doing sort of educational sessions. In the major cities and towns and obviously that's all been on hold it's been hard to get it going, but we are hoping that once things settle down and maybe we can get back to that. And, but you know, through the support group, we have had people sort of meet up for coffee and things like that, as well, so just keep an eye out for any events coming up on our website and we still do have.

an educational session, especially in Perth but just if you just keep an eye on our website and our Facebook page and you'll know which ones are coming up. Rebecca Clark -Quantum: Okay, thank you. For the next one that might not have been covered already here, probably for Rob. So what can I do to make the writing on the computer screen brighter for me and is there a technician that can come and set up my computer? Rob Drummond: Alrighty, so this could be very long so. I guess the short version is.

Most computers, and this is whether the windows or for apple,computers have got. quite reasonable accessibility functions built into them. So with windows there's narrator and there's things like magnifier and voiceover within the apple platforms. A lot of people get by with those quite successfully. However, where they fall down is a little bit with in the same way that say. there's a difference with a between the magnifying glass and the electronic magnifier and that main difference is that electronic magnifier has been purpose built to do a job and one of those things is to provide that high contrast.

To do that properly is a program that you can put on your sorry just windows computer called Zoomtext and Zoomtext will do for anything on your computer what magnifier would do. And it will magnify everything, not just content of email or perhaps web pages, but it will also magnify your menus taskbars and things like that that normally don't get magnified using windows, or some of the windows features. The other advantage of Zoomtext. Some of the other advantages, is that you can select larger coloured pointers and cursor enhancements.

there's even you know you can program your keyboard so that you press a certain button and that highlights exactly where the cursor or the mouse may be. You can also change the colors so rather than your normal colored screen, you can actually turn your computer into a yellow on black or black on white or whatever the case, might be again. quite similar to what we're able to do with the little electronic handheld magnifies so the the options, they just go to again figure out what works for you and your situation can someone come in and help you we can certainly talk you through how to do these things. I'm working with a lady at the moment who is about a six hour drive from us here in Sydney. And we're doing all of that remotely on the phone. She's doing things on her computer she's describing to me and we're able to get a

good result, so we don't always have to have a technician or somebody come out to visit oftentimes we can get a pretty good results. Just with them yeah remote support. We can do zoom sessions as well, for people, which we do quite frequently. Rebecca: Thanks Rob and there are probably a couple little bit similar here, might have a similar answer is "my house is dull and I keep having falls. Who can help me make my home safer? And the other one was about being nervous about going doing groceries and who can stop me what can help me stop me bumping into people? Rob Drummond: yeah yeah okay so look, around home, a lot of people have. made the change to LED down lights in their home and they sort of similar lighting to what I showed you earlier with this reading lamp, but of course the light is up in the ceiling and that's good for sort of general walking around.

In terms of being able to see things better at home and as you are walking around the home. You probably need to get a good electrician in and get some good advice and yeah there's quite a few good lighting shops around that will provide that advice and might even be able to Point you in the right direction and somebody who can make those upgrades for you. The kitchen and the bathroom are often two areas that people mention to me where they have made changes to their lighting in those areas and it's made a huge difference, you can take that to the rest of the house as well, if required. The other thing you can do is there's another group of people that can help you and they are called O and Ms, orientation and mobility. specialist. Now these people know how to get people around safely in the various environments that you might be operating in so that could be around home.It could be between home and the bus stop or the train stop or wherever you need to go and then, when you

get to your destination, they can help you can get around. You know, perhaps a shopping area, the public library, you know walk down to the bank etc so O & M specialists are not something that We get involved with we refer people to a couple of organisations, you probably know the names of, so one is vision, Australia, the other one is Guide Dogs so. that's I guess that is New South Wales specific but both Guide dogs have. Various organisations, perhaps by different names in other states but.

So in WA and also Tasmania that would be VisAbility. in South Australia is the Royal Society for the blind, but there is also Guide Dogs SA and NT And the Guide Dogs organisations are known by you know Victoria, New South wales or , to Queensland in the eastern states but everywhere, there is a Guide Dogs organisation and Vision Australia are based on the eastern seaboard and in WA as well, in Perth. Thanks for that Rob There's another one: who can I call to help me with vision aids? I guess we'd be one place Call us I guess, look call us. A lot of people, I guess, in the early stages, go through this process of. You know, trying different things, and sometimes you got helpful family members or or neighbours and whatnot who might have you know, had something themselves sitting around and they've handed it over and that's okay. And that's good and well, but if you want to start. digging down into ways to do things really well. Then that's good to see a range of what's

available; and generally, what we do when we come out to see people is, we will try people with a variety of things you know we just don't stop at the simple magnifying glass, because you can read the the food packet or something like that. : We will take that further we will show the variety of the electronic things and we certainly will show you something that. talks to you. We do that for a couple of reasons, one that may trigger bit of a memory of , yes I forgot I needed to do that. The other thing is that. Even though some something might be suitable for you today it's good to know that if your vision does drop off in the future, that there is something that is going to help you throughout any stage of that vision loss wherever that may end so.

it's good to see and have that background knowledge before you make your decisions and the number that's above Bec's left shoulder there, that 1300 883 853 phone number is there a. Line into all of our offices and the guys on on that phone number will be able to put you through to the person in your area. : Yes. Rebecca Clark -Quantum: And okay and yeah so similar answer , "I need someone to come to my health house to help me with low vision my GP doesn't know who to refer me to, but yet the. Depending on what exactly you need. it might be one of the organizations that could be you know we can come and show you the equipment at home most the time.

Rob: look a lot of GPs probably won't know.They might just say oh go to yeah whoever the peak body is in the local town or city. We can come to you and that's how we spend most of our time so when i'm not giving webinars and getting stuff organised around Quantum I'm out in the field in people's homes and. it's good for a couple of reasons, but the main thing is so guess you know when you are at home you've got a variety of things that are yours. And you know it could be tasks may be something specific you need to see.

You know people have got their little Bible say with you know ultra ultra small print.I'm struggling to read that even with My glasses, but you know with any of these devices, perhaps we've got a good result so things like that you've got a around home, we can really make our visit more pertinent to you. As I said before, if you are remote, we can do the telehealth thing and and help you in that way.

Rebecca : Okay, so and Sapna and Saarah and people have been doing a great job answering things on the chat, but I just read it out for the people haven't seen that so. There was talk about managing coffee intake for caffeine limits and does that include tea as well, and I think that Sapna had said that tea might be a bit a bit better because it's got antioxidants is that right? Sapna: Yes, tea has less caffeine than coffee and so, for those who have reached the limit of two to three cups of coffee a day it's still like a hot drink tea has antioxidants as well. But you know there's also decaffeinated coffee if you are after the taste yeah.

Rebecca : Good point and yeah there's lots of links in the chat with living with glaucoma, and I think.Rob touched on this do we allow trialing of equipment yeah we can come out and show you. equipment anyway, depending on where you are, so people can try before they buy in most instances and. Ah, the name of the reading pen that's the OrCam Read And I think we had a question about the price of that that. That one's $2499 we've got a range of different things, if you want to talk to that Rob because there's different talk to text aids. Rob yeah it's in terms of. price range, in general, the lights we've we've

got are from daylight we don't have any of the I guess cheaper sort of sorts of lamps that might look the same but they just don't give the same sort of result and that's mainly because the the lighting these things is really very, very good and high quality lighting, good even spread and just the right lighting temperature for someone who requires the contrast that people with glaucoma are particularly going to need. So they, pretty much all of these are rated at 6000 degrees kelvin and that's a temperature of light and you might notice if you've been shopping for lights, that you can get a warm lightor a cool. Light or a white light, so all of those different degrees kelvin. But anyway, the upshot is that the lighting. Depending on the device, for example, this

one here on the floor stand in, I think, even with the magnifying attachment is just a tad over $300 there abouts. other lights might only be $100- $150. Magnifying glasses, again we don't compete with the $20 ones from Bunnings and places like that, but these are all optically designed and whatnot again with the right color temperature of the lighting and these ones will range in price from about $140 up to about $300. Electronic magnifiers so it's a sort of how long's a piece of string so the little ones that you might. think would be relatively inexpensive they are so they are about $300 and they gradually go up in price, depending on the other, capabilities size, etc, and you get something like the 24 inch one behind me, for example, which is about five and a half thousand.

Talking devices as Bec said this pen one here OrCam Read is about two and a half thousand and there are other versions of OrCam. People may have seen one that clips on the side of a pair of glasses. They are re about six to 7000 but there's also talking device that just sits, that's all it does just but it sits there, it looks a little bit like an old transistor radio sits on a desk and they are about in the high threes to about $4,000. That very broadly is the price range across the board. Rebecca Clark -Quantum: yeah and yeah, I guess, we can mention. If people have got say you know NDIS funding or anything like that, or if it's something for workplace, there are various funding options out there for people with low vision Rob Drummond: yep. that's right.

that's right so there's the NDIS, there's also people with a gold card with veterans affairs. In if you're at work and you needing these things, then there's. No a scheme, which is your you can Google under the name of job access. And that works really well, they could be some funding available through commonwealth home care package. there's various funding arrangements that we're supplying. This whole variety of equipment into just depending on the criteria and conditions of those funders.

yeah great. Okay, and I don't think there's any other questions what I will do the various links that. you guys at Glaucoma Australia have provided. I can put those in the email that will be sent around with the video recording so people have got access.

to that. I will just share our contact details and are you wanted to say anything in summary Rob? No other than to thank Sapna and the team at Glaucoma Australia, for being part of today. You've probably had a really busy week, so I think you might be able to relax now. yeah many thanks for that so yeah if people are wanting information there are things on our website or 1300 883 853 or and we have got people all around the country, so can help and, yes, a really big thanks to Sapna and the team. it's great to have you aboard and learn so much about glaucoma

Sapna Nand - Glaucoma Australia: Thank you.

2022-03-22 11:12

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