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Editor’s Blog: Front row seat to the stage of innovation


With all the new technology and ideas that will surface here in San Francisco over the next 4 days, Ophthalmology Times has a front row seat to the stage of innovation.

As part of Ophthalmology Times’ coverage of the American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery meeting, Editor-in-Chief Mark L. Dlugoss will post blogs with his observations of the meeting.

For live coverage of ASCRS, follow @OphthTimes on Twitter.

By Mark L. Dlugoss

San Francisco-As the 2013 meeting of the American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery (ASCRS) officially opens today, the ophthalmic community embarks upon “yet another meeting.” Yes, the community always says that because of the number of meetings scheduled in the ophthalmology space, but that is a discussion for another time.

ASCRS and its annual meeting are different. The society was established almost 40 years ago on the premise of discussing new technology and innovation and to bring those concepts to the forefront in an open forum for the ophthalmic community to see, discuss-even debate-and build on. That premise continues today.

Over the years, the amount of technology and innovation that has emerged from the exhibit halls and podiums of ASCRS (and other major organizations) is really mind-boggling. It is amazing and exciting to see how rapidly the technology changes and innovation emerges in ophthalmology.

As a member of the ophthalmic media, Ophthalmology Times has been following and reporting on “the latest and greatest” for almost the same amount of time as ASCRS has been a society.

As “the press,” sometimes we don’t have to work too hard to find those emerging technologies. Industry and physicians will reach out to all the ophthalmic media (and even to the lay press on occasions) to get the word out. The media basically is front and center to all the latest innovation.

As the ASCRS meeting opens, the ophthalmic media has already been in San Francisco for 2 days attending sessions and interacting with members of industry and physicians regarding some of the new technology that will be presented here at ASCRS.

Besides the presentations at Cornea Day and Glaucoma Day, which many readers attended Friday, another “Ophthalmology Innovation Summit” (OIS) was held Thursday. The OIS conference addresses key issues affecting ophthalmology and showcases the most-promising private ophthalmic companies.

The summit also brings every facet of ophthalmology in one place, for 1 day, including innovators, entrepreneurs, physicians, academia, industry, and venture capitalists, even the FDA. The summit is very informative if you want to see “innovation.” That’s an event you may want to participate in the future.

Over the next 4 days, Ophthalmology Times will meet with many companies in ophthalmology–large, medium, and small-to learn more about their new technologies, latest innovations, and updates to existing technologies. There also will be discussions with surgeons who want to explain their ideas and data regarding their surgical innovations and techniques.

Some areas that the editors of Ophthalmology Times will be focusing their attention on at this year’s ASCRS include: femtosecond lasers, corneal collagen crosslinking, IOLs, advances in glaucoma surgery, diagnostic imaging, practice management, and technician content.

When the editors of Ophthalmology Times attend any ophthalmology meeting, there is always a sense of excitement, enthusiasm, and expectation about what the meeting has to offer. There is a lot of hard work in “covering” any conference, but there is so much to see and learn-and we are trying cram it all in 4 or 5 days. The ultimate goal is to present the information to readers through print and e-media.

So, we don’t look at the ASCRS meeting, or any other meeting, as “just another meeting.” With all the new technology and ideas that will surface here in San Francisco over the next 4 days, Ophthalmology Times has a front row seat to the stage of innovation.

Have a great ASCRS meeting!

For more articles in this issue of Ophthalmology Times Conference Brief, click here.

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