Volume 20| June 2018

Dr. Karen Grucci Brown
Chicopee Eyecare welcomes Karen Grucci Brown, O.D. to our practice! Dr. Grucci, as we’ll call her in the office, will be joining our practice in July, working three days a week along with helping our colleague and owner of Ludlow Eye Associates, Dr. Katarzyna Babinski, two days a week. (Dr. Babinski, who speaks fluent Polish, works in our practice one Saturday morning a month.)

Dr. Karen L Grucci Brown is a native of West Springfield, Massachusetts. She received a Bachelor of Arts degree, cum laude, from Westfield State College in Westfield, Massachusetts. She then went on to complete her Doctor of Optometry degree in 1996 at the New England College of Optometry (NECO) in Boston, Massachusetts. 

 Since graduating from NECO, Dr. Grucci has been practicing optometry in North Carolina. She began her career at Coastal Carolina Eye Clinic, a group ophthalmology practice in Wilmington, North Carolina where for 13 years, she was the contact lens specialist. Since 2009, Dr. Grucci has been practicing with Risk Optometric in Hendersonville, just outside of Asheville, in the mountains of North Carolina.

“I will miss my patients in North Carolina, but I feel it is time to come home,” says Dr. Grucci. “Chicopee Eyecare has a longstanding reputation for providing the highest quality and advanced care to its patients. I have known Dr. Momnie and Dr. Latka for many years before becoming an optometrist myself. I am delighted for the opportunity to work with them.”

Dr. Grucci is a member of the North Carolina Optometric Society and former treasurer for the Mountain District chapter. She is also a member of the American Optometric Association. Dr. Grucci has been married for 19 years to David Brown and has 2 children, Connor, 16 and Jillian, 10. She is happy to that she and her family are now able to spend free time with extended family. 

Dr. Grucci looks forward to seeing patients at Chicopee Eyecare starting this summer. 

Please do us a favor and like us on  Facebook.  Thank you again for choosing our office. Our goal is to safeguard your eyes and help you achieve a lifetime of clear and comfortable vision.

David C. Momnie, O.D.
Camille Guzek-Latka, O.D .
Julianne M. Rapalus, O.D.   
Karen Grucci Brown, O.D.
Dark chocolate improving your vision?
Researchers in two separate studies found that when participants consumed dark chocolate and milk chocolate, they tended to have better contrast sensitivity two hours after eating the chocolate. The specific mechanism for the visual improvement was not found but scientists speculate that an increase in blood flow to parts of the eye could be the reason. “Improvement in visual acuity and contrast sensitivity was small and short lasting, and hence, further research must be done in order to determine the relevance of its use in clinical practice,” commented Luis Silva, M.D. of the New York Eye and Ear Infirmary.

Sipping red wine for my heart and now munching on dark chocolate for my eyesight...I’m just following my doctor’s recommendations!
Restoring sight to a nine year old boy
In a March, 2018 article in Newsweek (online edition), a legally blind nine-year-old boy in Florida was scheduled to become one of the first people in the country to receive a gene therapy treatment to restore his sight. The boy, Creed Pettit, has a rare eye disease called Leber congenital amaurosis which is cause by a genetic mutation. A virus injected under the retina contains copies of a gene children with the condition are deficient in and without the missing protein, children can eventually go completely blind. The drug is called Luxturna and treatment for the two eyes costs $850,000, although the drug company and insurance are helping to make the treatment possible. Creed was diagnosed at the age of two by the Bascom Palmer Eye Institute in Miami.
His mother told reporters “He is dying to see a real rainbow.”
Chicopee Eyecare also welcomes
Diana Symiakakis
Diana is a licensed optician with over 28 years of experience in the optical industry. She has worked in both private practice and retail settings with regard to eyeglasses and contact lenses. Diana has been American Board of Opticianry Certified since 1991 and National Contact Lens Examiners Certified since 1993. She will be joining opticians Jim Moran, who has been with Chicopee Eyecare for almost forty years and Terri Nunes. We are thrilled to have someone with so much experience and expertise in fitting and adjusting eyeglasses join our practice. Diana and her husband have two children and live in Ludlow. 

Welcome, Diana!
How Might Amazon Disrupt
the Healthcare Industry?
When Amazon started in 1998, it was simply an online bookstore. Since that time, it has evolved into a massive e-commerce store and has a Prime membership of over 80 million members. Amazon entered the food industry with its acquisition of Whole Foods and its imminent entry into the pharmacy industry will radically change healthcare. They are developing a telemedicine app to connect patients with doctors and pharmacists. A virtual doctor could review a patient’s condition and direct the patient to a medication delivered by Amazon Prime Now or allow him or her to pick up the medication at a Whole Foods pharmacy. Another area Amazon is exploring is electronic medical records where millions of patients would have their health care information all stored in one location accessible to any health care provider. If Amazon has access to your medical records, they could target particularly patients with a doctor though a video conference. Fasten your seatbelts for massive transforming changes in healthcare in the not too distant future.

In an upcoming newsletter, we’ll discuss how Amazon’s innovative technology might
affect the eye care industry.
Thank You for Your Google Reviews

Thank you if you’ve given us a nice Google Review. 
If you were happy with your experience at Chicopee Eyecare, your positive review helps us spread the word and market our practice to potentially new patients. Click Here
Case Of The Month - Iritis
A patient presented to our office a couple of weeks ago with a red eye. Most red eyes are due to conjunctivitis, an infection or an allergic reaction of the clear outer lining of the eye. However, there are more serious causes of a red eye, including iritis, which is what our patient had. It’s an inflammation of the iris, the colored ring around the pupil and is more serious than conjunctivitis because the inside of the eye is involved.  Severe complications, including permanent vision loss and a particular type of glaucoma can occur if the iritis isn’t treated properly with steroid eye drops. The exact cause of iritis is unknown but often results from an underlying systemic condition like an autoimmune disease (for example, inflammatory bowel disease or psoriatic arthritis.)

The symptoms of iritis are eye redness, discomfort or mild pain, light sensitivity and blurred vision in the affected eye. Call our office immediately if you have symptoms of iritis as prompt treatment will usually prevent complications.
Optometry Humor
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In Case Of Emergency
Chicopee Eyecare provides
"24/7" coverage for emergency eye care 
for our patients.

We recommend that you do not go to the emergency room for an eye injury or acute eye problem unless it is very serious. Drs. Momnie, Guzek-Latka and Rapalus keep slots open for urgent care visits for new and established patients during normal office hours, and provide around-the clock emergency coverage for our established patients for after-hours and weekends.
Call 592-7777 before calling your PCP or visiting a hospital ER!
Office Hours
We are available when you need us 
Our office and optical department are open during the following hours:
Monday         9:00 am - 5:30 pm
Tuesday        9:00 am - 5:30pm
Wednesday   9:00 am - 5:30pm
Thursday       9:00 am - 6:30pm
Friday           9:00 am - 5:30 pm
Saturday       9:00 am - 12:30 pm

We will be closed Saturdays in July and August, resuming our regular schedule the Saturday after Labor Day .

One of our doctors is always available for emergencies on nights, weekends and holidays. Call (413) 592-7777 and our answering service will put you in touch with an on-call optometrist.

"The people in this office are committed to providing you with the highest quality of eye care and to treating you with kindness and respect. "  
If you would like to share any feedback or comments please email us at  info@chicopeeeyecare.com

©2018 Chicopee Eyecare - All Rights Reserved
Chicopee Eyecare · 113 Center Street · Chicopee, MA 01013 · (413) 592-7777 info@chicopeeeyecare.com
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