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UPIKE-KYCO faculty present poster at national meeting

March 20, 2017 12:00 AM
Pikeville, Ky.
Donald J. Egan, O.D., FAAO, and Donnie Akers, O.D., presented scientific posters in collaboration with the Western University of Health Sciences College of Optometry titled “Peripheral Corneal Shape Assessment – How Reliable is Keratometry?” and “Traditional Keratometry versus Simulated Keratometry – Do Outcomes Differ?” at the American Academy of Optometry meeting in Anaheim, Calif. Egan serves as the associate dean for academic affairs and a professor of optometry and Akers is a member of the founding faculty and faculty chair for the University of Pikeville-Kentucky College of Optometry.

Corneal shape is essential in determining the fitting characteristics for a contact lens. Traditional manual keratometry is being replaced by computerized corneal mapping however, a lot of practices still rely on manual keratometry for the assessment of corneal shape and subsequent contact lens parameter design. With the advancements in contact lens design and technology, relying on the manual keratometer is a concern when attempting to achieve optimal fits. The purpose of the studies was to evaluate the accuracy of central corneal curvature and peripheral corneal curvature assessment with manual keratometry versus computerized corneal topography. It was determined that manual keratometry was not an equivalent substitute for computerized topography and may require recalibration or adjustment in the art of contact lens designing.

The mission of the American Academy of Optometry is to serve educational needs by advancing research, promoting innovation in optometric education, encouraging visionary thinking, supporting ethical practices and affirming provocative concepts in optometric education worldwide. The academy meeting is open to all optometrists in professional practice and to scientists, educators, librarians, administrators, editors and any others who are interested in optometry and/or vision science.

Egan received his Doctor of Optometry degree from the Pennsylvania College of Optometry and completed a residency at the University of Waterloo School of Optometry before becoming a member of their contact lens faculty. Thereafter, he joined the faculty at the University of Missouri, St. Louis, developing the contact lens program for the newly established school of optometry. Prior to his appointment at Pikeville, Egan was a faculty member at Western University of Health Sciences College of Optometry serving as course leader and developing the contact lens curriculum. Akers received his Doctor of Optometry degree from the Indiana University School of Optometry. Before joining KYCO, he had a private practice in Paintsville for 15 years and has worked for the Veterans Affairs Clinic in Prestonsburg for 11 years. His current responsibilities are gross anatomy, ocular anatomy and clinical practice.

The Kentucky College of Optometry is the fourth college under the University of Pikeville banner and reflects the institution’s mission of service and strategic initiatives. The American Council for Optometric Education has granted the Kentucky College of Optometry the pre-accreditation classification of “Preliminary Approval.” The University of Pikeville is the 22nd school in the country to have a college of optometry. Construction is nearing completion on a new educational facility to house the Kentucky College of Optometry. Sixty students will be admitted per class for a total of 240. The university expects to provide for the underserved in Central Appalachia and other rural areas of the country. 


Donald J. Egan   Donnie Akers

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