Back in the early 1970's I had my first eye exam. I was considered a non-student and was removed from standard school in first grade, as the experts of the time had labeled me "Mentally Retarded" . My eye doctor, fresh from the New York optometry school & new professor at our very own Pacific University, had brought his custom built VEP (Visual Evoked Potential). His VEP was the only one of its kind in the state, and it was the same technology that was being used for neuro-plasticity research at the time. He had a crazy idea that you could change more than just visual acuity through therapy with the eyes, and relied on this technology as an OBJECTIVE measurement of visual FUNCTION. Since much of our visual pathway involves our brain, his philosophy was that by changing vision function you are also changing brain function. Much of this developmental approach to vision and vision therapy is still debated to this day in medical circles. Since doctors make so much more money selling their wares or doing surgery this approach to vision care is often overlooked. But through an intense program of vision therapy, and a little physical therapy as well, I went from banging my head against walls and drooling on myself to being a top notch student and Outstanding Graduate of my optometry class.
I can still remember my first exam, seeing flashing lights while looking at a TV screen, and the following pain &suffering I experienced doing vision therapy, day after day, for several years. I hated the whole thing! After a year or so of treatment, when my parents were wondering if I was still making progress with therapy, my mentor would run the VEP again and was able to show conclusively just how much improvement was being made. A quick Pub-Med search and you can see that our visual pathways are "set" at a young age, around 11 years from current research (using these same electrophysiology procedures) , and no further improvement can be expected. Well, my VEP studies showed steady improvement over my entire teen years until I finally achieved a "normal" response- far beyond what traditional medicine would say is possible. Later in graduate school, when many of my fellow students would roll their eyes at this technology, and its use in monitoring progress with the therapy used to improve both vision and brain function, I took this to heart and developed a sub-specialty in this field. When Diopsys brought its new NOVA VEP/ERG system to market, I immediately added it to my practice. In fact, I had the 3rd system in the state back in 2015!
As a graduate student, reading the VEP studies was a chore. We were still using the home-made unit my mentor had used on me all those years ago. Ten minutes of testing would require 1-2 hours of statistics! We had to do the number crunching on our own. With the new Diopsys system, when my staff completes the test and pushes "save", all the statistics are completed immediately using the latest soft wear programs. A simple-to-interpret printout is generated and I get to spend my time explaining the results to my patients and crafting specific therapy programs- not running the numbers!
Over the last few decades new techniques and new testing modalities have been added. Running electrophysiology on patients is fast, easy and OBJECTIVE. My mentor has long passed, and few providers have the desire and knowledge to offer this technology. Striving to provide the best care I can provide, I am currently offering 3 different testing modalities:
VEP or Visual Evoked Potential PERG or Pattern Electroretinography FFERG or Full-Field Electroretinography
I rely on electrophysiology to measure loss from visual disabilities, ocular disease, as well as head injury. This technology is invaluable to show effectiveness of therapies as well as progressive loss from disease or trauma. Diseases such as Glaucoma, Diabetic Retinopathy, and Macular Degenerations are just a few that can be monitored with a much greater sensitivity than traditional Visual Fields and Retinal Imaging. One study showed how Glaucoma loss can be detected up to 7 years earlier with electrophysiology!
* A quick overview of each test can be found under its own page
Contact Us Remy J. Delplanche, O.D. 4280 SW CEDAR HILLS BLVD BEAVERTON, OR 97005 Phone: 503-644-5665
Office Hours Mon 9:00 am - 5:00 pm Tue 9:00 am - 5:00 pm Wed 9:00 am - 5:00 pm Thu 9:00 am - 5:00 pm Fri By appt only