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Today's Practice | Jan 2012


Members of the CRST Europe Editorial Board and Global Advisory Board discuss their favorite smartphone applications and how they benefit themselves, their practices, and their patients.

Arthur B. Cummings, MB ChB, FCS(SA), MMed (Ophth), FRCS(Edin)

I use the Eye Handbook app (Cloud Nine Development LLC) most. It is comprehensive and includes many subapplications such as calculators, journals, meetings, eye atlas, medications, and eye tests. It continues to surprise me with how much information is included in the app. The calculators are particularly good, and it is easy to use.

Sheraz M. Daya, MD, FACP, FACS, FRCS(Ed), FRCOphth

I sometimes use the Eye Handbook, but this app is becoming pretty dense and unwieldy in terms of information, and users must hunt a bit to get the data needed. It features great calculators and conversion charts, such as those for radii to diopters, visual acuity equivalents, and IOP based on central corneal thickness, as well as IOL calculations. There are other features that I do not use but might be useful, including color charts and visual acuity test charts. There is some useful reference information for the ophthalmic trainee and practicing ophthalmologist who might be a bit rusty and need to look up, for instance, medication dosages and mode of action.

On the nonophthalmic front, my favorite app is Evernote (Evernote Corp.), which I use to take notes, attach files, and store all sorts of useful information. I can take notes on the fly or even dictate material, which then gets stored in the Evernote cloud. I can e-mail the relevant note to my personal assistant to handle or work on later; using Evernote on the Mac (Apple Inc.), I am able to view the same notes and act on them. Evernote also serves as a great tool for backing up vital files such as PowerPoint presentations. The search feature on Evernote is powerful, and another cute feature is the app’s ability to record the place where the note was taken and show the location on a world map.

Eric D. Donnenfeld, MD

I enjoy recommending iRead, an app designed by ophthalmologist Richard G. Davis, MD. iRead will allow you to read for a short period with your phone when you are in a situation where you do not have your reading glasses. If your phone supports the zoom function and has a built-in light and camera, iRead will enable you to read that menu! Best of all—it’s free!

Simonetta Morselli, MD

One smartphone application that I use every day for my job is FarmaciaPlus (Logica Informatica srl). This app gives users the ability to search and learn about all types of drugs and formulations.

Karl G. Stonecipher, MD

There are three smartphone-related apps that I constantly find myself using. The first is the Eye Handbook. It is the one application that is specifically for ophthalmology and ophthalmic-related issues. I particularly like the atlas for showing patients photographs of their ocular issues. Second, I am always on Epocrates (Epocrates, Inc.). It is challenging for physicians in a field like ophthalmology to keep up with all of the new drugs. Epocrates is a quick reference source, and the DocAlerts keep you on top of the latest issues in medicine. Finally, in a world of ever-changing microbes, I find the Sanford Guide to Antimicrobial Therapy app (Antimicrobial Therapy, Inc.) invaluable. With a touch of the finger, I can look up bugs versus drugs or disease processes and the latest antimicrobial options.

Carlos Vergés, MD, PhD

In my opinion, smartphone apps are a great tool in ophthalmology and have many advantages for our patients. Using smartphone apps, patients can test their vision rapidly. Apps are also useful for patients who have problems like maculopathies or who have just had surgery, as a means to control vision recovery. The best are Vision Test (3 Sided Cube Design Ltd.), Vision Training (Mogens Hestholm), and Vision (Dimitriy Glebenok), all for the iPhone.

Arthur B. Cummings, MB ChB, FCS(SA), MMed (Ophth), FRCS(Edin), practices at the Wellington Eye Clinic & UPMC Beacon Hospital, Dublin, Ireland. Dr. Cummings is an Associate Chief Medical Editor of CRST Europe. He may be reached at tel: +353 1 2930470; fax: +353 1 2935978; e-mail: abc@wellingtoneyeclinic.com.

Sheraz M. Daya, MD, FACP, FACS, FRCS(Ed), FRCOphth, is Director and Consultant of Centre for Sight and the Corneoplastic Unit and Eyebank, Queen Victoria Hospital, East Grinstead, United Kingdom. Dr. Daya is the Chief Medical Editor of CRST Europe. He may be reached at e-mail: sdaya@centreforsight.com.

Eric D. Donnenfeld, MD, is a trustee of Dartmouth Medical School in Hanover, New Hampshire, and a partner in Ophthalmic Consultants of Long Island in Rockville Centre, New York. Dr. Donnenfeld is a member of the CRST Europe Global Advisory Board. He may be reached at tel: +1 516 766 2519; e-mail: eddoph@aol.com.

Simonetta Morselli, MD, is Chief of the Ophthalmic Unit, San Bassiano Hospital, Bassano del Grappa, Italy. Dr. Morselli is a member of the CRST Europe Editorial Board. She may be reached at e-mail: simonetta.morselli@gmail.com.

Karl G. Stonecipher, MD, is Director of Refractive Surgery at The Laser Center in Greensboro, North Carolina. Dr. Stonecipher is a member of the CRST Europe Global Advisory Board. He may be reached at tel: +1 336 288 8823; e-mail: stonenc@aol.com.

Carlos Vergés, MD, PhD, is Head of the Department of Ophthalmology, CIMA, Universitat Politecnica de Catalunya, Spain. Dr. Verges is a member of the CRST Europe Editorial Board. He states that he has no financial interest in the products or companies mentioned. He may be reached at tel: +34 93 551 33 14; fax: +34 93 551 33 14; e-mail: verges@attglobal. net.