lens

Microwave oven cataracts

Microwave oven cataracts

I really wanted to write a post about microwave ovens and the very cool sparks that result from some metals that might accidently have found their way into the microwave. I think I have a lot to write about (or at least further study by me) when it comes to microwave ovens though. After reading a couple of websites and watching some fun videos I saw that microwave energy can affect the lens in our eye. I had no idea.

The lens in our eye, that many of my patients think is the outer clear part of the eye (that’s called the cornea), has no blood supply. And the cornea doesn’t either, incidently. Microwave energy, if powerful enough, could heat up the lens. The theory this could cause damage is because there’s no blood flow in the lens. If there were, ¬†blood could carry the heat away. Amazing that neither our lens nor our cornea have a blood supply.

But what are the chances of getting a cataract from a microwave oven’s radiation? I don’t know and I couldn’t find too much about the “incidence” but it boils down to this. If your microwave was dropped or somehow bent, there could be leaking microwaves coming out. I suppose leaking microwaves wouldn’t be that big of a problem unless you put your eye right in front of that leaking spot. But, no sense is putting your eye right in front of it either way unless you’re just checking your hot pockets.

Now how are you going to tell if your microwave leaks! Have I got a funny one for you. And this makes sense. The microwave energy is about the same frequency as our wireless networks wavelength at home. That’s around 2.4GHz (yeah, I know, there are other wireless frequencies too). Unplug your microwave, put your wirelessly connected laptop in your microwave with the door closed. If you can access your laptop through some sort of remote program on another computer, or just ping your laptop successfully, you have a leak. The wireless signal went through to the inside of the microwave oven. But that’s not the only way! I’ll just give you a link below to read other interesting ways.

I think the bottom line is this is all highly unlikely to happen…cataracts from microwave ovens…goes to show you that the everyday stuff has potential for harm though. And now I’ll go try one of those experiments I found you can do using a microwave oven. To my kids, don’t do this when daddy isn’t here.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Microwave_burn

http://www.wikihow.com/Check-a-Microwave-for-Leaks

microwave oven diagram

microwave oven diagram

electromagnetic spectrum

 

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Multifocal soft contact lenses, good? bad?

Multifocal soft contact lenses, good? bad?

I’ll be honest here. I’m not sure who really likes them. Oh, sure there are some fans. Is there a facebook fan page for these lenses? If there isn’t, someone start one. How would we gauge how many people are not fans though? If there was a thumbs down, I’d click it. I offer them to my patients however. The advertising (what magazines are these ads in anyway?) gets people interested and I oblige them by giving out some samples. They’re free to me, they better be otherwise I wouldn’t spin my wheels talking about them to a patient.

What is it about these multifocal contact lenses that kinda makes them work? They certainly aren’t in any way like a pair of bifocal glasses or progressive lenses. These lenses have the strangest design. I’ll include a picture below of what I’m about to explain. Someone figured out that a person (who are you?) would be able to see far and near looking through both powers at the same time! What? Simultaneous vision is a phrase that sounds pretty cool and technical. The whole concept is like playing more than one instrument at the same time. I’m trying to think of who does that all day long. There are musicians that do that but do they do it all day long? Can you use both arms at the same time to do different things all day long? Of course not. But there are some reasons why I think people do wear them.

One reason I’m sure is some people don’t want to wear glasses. What is the lesser evil then? Glasses can get in the way, fog up, block your peripheral vision, get dirty or maybe they don’t fit well and/or fall off. Another reason is cosmetic. I know people that think they don’t look good in glasses or they don’t want to be seen in them(try on virtual frames) Fine! Try these multifocal contact lenses and decide what’s more important, how you look or how you see.

Now I’m not trying to say people can’t see through these contact lenses but vision is somewhat compromised. Some contact lens manufacturers design these simultaneous vision lenses where the center power of the lens has the distance prescription and the other eye might wear a lens where the center of the lens has the near power. Say what?! Here’s another variable about these little power areas in the lens. Since our pupils change size depending on the light, a person might be looking through more of these powers at the same time or less. Now that adds another interesting affect. Changing vision based on changing pupil size. How do I account for that to give the patient the right lens? Trial and error. Like I said in another post, this is a practice. I know my patients expect a lot and I do my best. But those advertisements sure make it difficult!

And that reminds me, I want to start a facebook fan page for the air puff you might get at your regular exam. How many thumbs up will that get?

Distance center is for the dominant eye and near center for the other eye

Distance center is for the dominant eye and near center for the other eye