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Innovations | Mar 2014

Six Years of Eyetube

One education provider offers his personal review of the online video resource.

Online video streaming has evolved much like the universe—with a “big bang.” Over the years, the prevalence of sharing videos on the Internet has grown exponentially, and now it encompasses an endless number of possibilities.

We are all familiar with YouTube and how it revolutionized online videos, making them accessible for all Internet users. Although there are numerous ophthalmic videos on YouTube, in the past 6 years, Eyetube has become a more relevant vehicle for ophthalmic content. In addition to providing ophthalmic surgical videos, Eyetube sets itself apart from other online video sources with its business-related video posts, through which surgeons and industry alike can share pearls on a variety of topics.

GREAT VALUE

I have found great value in watching surgical technique videos. For instance, I have learned a lot about laser-assisted cataract surgery and picked up myriad pointers on how to change my technique by watching Eyetube videos posted by my colleagues. Although earlier videos were initially from LenSx (Alcon) users, they provided insights and helped me understand what to anticipate when I first started using the Victus femtosecond laser (Bausch + Lomb Technolas). Now, videos showcasing cataract surgery with multiple laser platforms can be viewed on Eyetube.

Some videos have been sources of both knowledge and amusement. A variety of videos cover patient selection and offer tips on how to get started with premium IOLs, how to optimize outcomes, and how to build practice volumes—all relevant for the modern refractive cataract surgeon.

CHALLENGING THE STANDARD

As one would expect, there are consistent themes present in the videos on Eyetube; however, some offer differing views and others help to tackle sensitive controversies in modern ophthalmology. The diversity of video content is useful, as it helps challenge what is often dogma. One hot topic is how to treat patients with astigmatism. Which is the best choice—limbal relaxing incisions, toric IOLs, or bioptics? All three methods are discussed on Eyetube, each with its own set of pros, cons, and surgical tips.

Is one algorithmic approach better than another? Obviously, without randomized controlled studies, we cannot have a definitive answer; however, it is great to see the diversity of opinions and rationales showcased on Eyetube. In some cases, the videos have made me question my own personal approach.

PERSONAL FAVORITES

Some of my favorite videos on Eyetube are interviews with colleagues and opinion leaders filmed during major conferences. These discussions of papers they are presenting or symposia they are moderating can be insightful. For many of us who are busy at conferences, this is a great way to catch up on innovations and new topics.

The other useful videos on Eyetube that I recommend are those that address practice development. Shareef Mahdavi, the ophthalmic practice development guru, has some fabulous presentations that are worth watching. Even surgeons with already successful practices will pick up great pearls.

Having Eyetube as an educational resource in ophthalmology is extraordinary, and credit must be given to the organizers and, in particular, to the ophthalmologists who contribute by uploading their creations. Making a video is not an easy task, as it often takes an hour of work per minute of video.

What is fantastic about being able to create a story from a collection of videos, images, music, and voice-over? The answer is simple: It is a great way to share our time and talents with colleagues. Congratulations to all on the 6th anniversary of Eyetube.

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

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