Alcon Labs has introduced a new lubricant eye drop, Systane Ultra. The company says the new drop's mechanism of action is unique, acting like a drop yet protecting the ocular surface like a gel, providing extended protection. Systane Ultra was formulated to make eyes feel comfortable and lubricated longer, Alcon says. The new drop is preserved with Polyquad, the same system used in Opti-Free RepleniSH. Systane Ultra comes in two sizes, a 10-ml bottle and a Home & Away Pack that contains both a 10- and a 5-ml bottle. For information, visit


Stereos Go Digital

Synthetic Optics, of Franklin Lakes, N.J., has taken 18 stereopsis vision tests, for both children and adults, and put them on a flash drive in digital form. The company says that for the first time physicians can test stereopsis at any distance, from a few inches to 20 feet, on a desktop computer or laptop. Tests are composed of random dot and line stereogram targets, including the Random Dot Butterfly exam.

The company says the user can vary a target's size and distance as well as quickly calculate disparities for each stereo target. Also, you can plug the flash drive into the USB port of any computer in your office without incurring additional licensing fees. For information, call (201) 847-0007.


New Spectralis OCT and
Spectralis HRA+OCT Software

Heidelberg Engineering has released a new software upgrade for the Spectralis product line. The version 3.2 upgrade adds new capabilities to both the two-mode Spectralis OCT and six-mode Spectralis HRA+OCT versions of the company's tracking laser tomographer, which combines spectral-domain OCT and confocal scanning laser technologies.

The set reference feature allows the user to select any image in an existing progression series as a reference in order to analyze changes from different time points. This is possible, Heidelberg says, because the unit's TruTrack eye tracking technology places follow-up scans at precisely the same location, thus enabling detection of subtle changes. The segmentation adjustment feature enables doctors to manually mark any layer of the retina for analysis.

In addition, since doctors often want to see fine detail in both the fundus and OCT images, the new version is designed so the user can customize the display on the instrument or networked viewing stations. The new printing options provide similar capabilities for hardcopy printouts. 

Heidelberg Engineering has begun shipping the software upgrade to customers at no charge. For information visit


Research Supports Safety of Iquix

Levofloxacin 1.5% (Iquix, Vistakon Pharmaceuticals) does not adversely affect the corneal endothelium in humans even after intensive dosing, according to new research supported by the manfacturer.

In a prospective, randomized, investigator-masked study in 48 healthy human volunteers, researchers at Ophthalmic Research Associates (Andover, Mass.) evaluated endothelial cell density, morphology and central corneal thickness following intensive use of levofloxacin 1.5% over a two-week period. Dosing of levofloxacin 1.5% was as indicated for corneal ulcer; in the study, 224 drops were administered over 14 days. Specular microscopy and pachymetry were conducted at baseline and on day 21.

Researchers reported that there were no significant changes in all endpoints. Mean ECD was 2,767 ±317 and 2,786 ±295 cells/mm^2; mean cell size variability was 31.4 ±5.2 and 31.8 ±5.9; mean percentage of hexagonal cells was 59.8 ±10.8 and 61.9±11.3; and, mean CCT was 560 ±36 and 568 ±46 µm at pre- and post-dose evaluations, respectively.


Rodenstock Rewards with Points

Optical Distribution Corp., the exclusive U.S. distributor of Rodenstock frame and lens products, has launched the Rodenstock Options program, which rewards practices for purchasing Rodenstock progressive and task-specific lenses.

Eyecare professionals will earn points for each pair of eligible Rodenstock products purchased through Eyefinity. These points can then be used to offset the costs of continuing education programs, association dues and other practice-building items. Practices can register for the program at The website contains the details of the program, along with a catalog of eligible items for redemption, which will be continuously updated. For more information, contact Optical Distribution at 1 (888) 407-3937.