AdaptDx: Patient Value and Practice Value
Glenn Corbin, OD
Dr. Corbin discusses how embracing new technology has allowed him to better serve his patients with the ability to identify early signs of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) with a simple, non-invasive test.
Embracing the Newest Technologies
What kind of practice do we have? We have a very comprehensive six-optometrist practice located in central Pennsylvania. We take a very proactive approach to our macular degeneration patients. As such we are embracing the newest technologies that allow us to diagnose the disease as early as possible; which helps us to be very accountable to our patients for managing their conditions.
Age-Related Drusen or Pathologic Drusen?
One of the clinical challenges that all eye care practitioners face is looking at a patient with macular drusen and not really knowing: Is it simply age-related drusen or is it pathologic drusen? Is there really AMD starting? And the only instrument that truly allows us to differentiate those patients is the AdaptDx. Measuring dark adaptation, knowing it’s the earliest change that occurs in the diagnosis of AMD, has really been critical to helping us catch our patients early on and to managing them more aggressively to help control or prevent further deterioration of the macula.
Poor Night Vision is an Early Warning
One of the most common presentations in an eye care practice is the symptom of difficulty seeing at night. And it’s very difficult for us to differentiate if there’s an underlying pathology that could be contributing. We know that a decrease in dark adaptation, which is the earliest sign of AMD, is one of the primary causes of night vision difficulties. Having the AdaptDx allows us to test these patients now and determine if their night vision is truly a pathological result of AMD.
AdaptDx Sets Us Apart
Patients who have AMD are fascinated by the technology. And the fact that we’re the only ones in this region who offer this technology is even more fascinating to them. I think that having this technology sets us apart from our other colleagues in the area. But more importantly, it is an attraction for people to want to come here, to know at the earliest stage if they have or are developing AMD. And our techs have learned to use the technology in a very efficient manner. It was easy for them to learn and very easy for our patients to take the test during the course of a routine visit to our practice.
Value for Us. Value for Our Patients.
I think some of the trends that we see in health care in general really drive us to technologies that are not glitzy technologies but truly can offer us valuable information that the clinical exam itself doesn’t reveal. For instance, these patients who present with drusen, we can photo document, we can do an OCT but it doesn’t really tell us if there’s functional damage. And the dark adaptation test is really the only way of telling. AdaptDx really helps drive the earliest diagnosis for our patients.