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Sun Times Feature Story


The ChildLydia H 021320

Getting Her Vision Back - Finally!

A Lifetime Battle For Lydia Harris Comes To A Happy End With A Visit To Braverman Eye Center

Hollywood - While many of us have stories to tell about our vision, Lydia Harris can fill several volumes with what she has gone through since the age of 4.

While we can tell you that the 60-year-old south Florida resident had spring time cataract surgery to correct High Myopia and cataracts in both eyes - it’s the road that she climbed to get to the Braverman Eye Center in Hollywood that is something special.

Before she got to see Dr. Stanley Braverman and his staff in their state-of-the-art office - or be referred by her Optometrist Dr. Dan Llewellyn in Fort Lauderdale, who is the official eye doctor for the Florida Panthers - Harris had endured a lifetime of vision problems.
“Since I was in pre-school, I wore glasses,” Harris recalled. “My eyesight got progressively worse through the years - and even had to wear bifocals that looked like Coke bottles. It was not an easy childhood.”

Through the years, there was always a struggle with her vision, and when she moved to Florida and started to see Dr. Llewellyn for her routine visits, there were fewer problems. But that all started to change last year when things began to go downhill.
From the time Dr. Llewellyn suggested Dr. Braverman, Harris could see things changing once again. By the time she had both of her eyes done in March and April, this is someone who was indeed sold.

“The meeting with Dr. Braverman and his great staff was the beginning of something special,” Harris pointed out. “Every question I had, he had an answer for. I can’t talk enough about the procedure on both eyes and the way I was treated. A positive experience.”
In the months after the eyes were done, Harris is doing very well - seeing those street signs and everything better than ever before.  
As for Dr. Braverman, he said “Ms. Harris had two problems. She had cataracts, but she also had highly nearsighted eyes since birth. With today’s methods of cataract surgery, we are able to not only correct the cataract, but also, we can change the power of the crystalline lens so that nearsightedness can be eliminated.

What Are Cataracts?
A cataract is formed when the natural lens of the eye, responsible for focusing light and producing sharp images, becomes cloudy and hardens, resulting in a loss of visual function. The lens of the eye is clear at birth but is one of the first parts of the body to show the effects of aging. A cataract is painless and usually develops gradually over several months or years. The onset of a cataract in one or both eyes may cause decreased night vision, impaired depth perception, and increased color distortion.

Cataracts are the leading cause of vision loss among adults age 55 and older. In fact, poor vision from cataracts affects 60 percent of all adults over age 60. However, cataracts also can result from injury, heredity, or medications, so they can affect people of all ages.
Understanding that no two conditions or patients are the same, Dr. Braverman analyzes the patient’s symptoms, performs a comprehensive eye exam, and may test for glare disability and contrast sensitivity before making a diagnosis. The final decision to proceed with the surgery belongs to the patient.

Your optometrist or Dr. Braverman may prescribe glasses, medication or surgery depending on your symptoms, complaints and age. Usually surgery will not be recommended until glasses no longer work to make you visually happy. In the case of clear lensectomy surgery, the patient cosmetically wants to get rid of their glasses, but they are out of the LASIK treatment range.

Cataract Surgery: What To Expect
Thanks to new advancements, this is a great time to have cataract surgery. Your eye is like a camera. It has photographic paper (the retina), and a camera lens. Two excellent options exist for cataract surgery. The choice is yours. Traditional Cataract Surgery is the removal of your cloudy natural camera lens, which is usually dissolved using high frequency ultrasound through a small (less than 3 millimeter) opening. If your eye qualifies, the second option, Laser Assisted Cataract Surgery can now be done using state of the art Femtosecond Laser technology to assist with parts of the cataract surgical procedure, including softening up the cloudy camera lens.

This Femtosecond Laser Assisted Surgery reduces the amount of high frequency ultrasound needed. Laser Assisted Cataract Surgery takes a delicate procedure and refines it even more, so that the surgical precision is unparalleled. The computer-guided accuracy of the laser compliments your doctor’s skills with today’s latest technology. An artificial man made clear lens is then placed inside the eye where the cloudy lens used to be.

There are several types of high quality premium vision lenses that can be used, giving you potentially better results than with a standard basic lens. After the surgery, eye drops are given to the patient to aid in the healing of the eye, which takes a few months, but the patient is able to return to normal activity almost immediately after surgery and usually sees well within just days. If the eye is otherwise healthy, cataract surgery is successful in more than 98% of patients and they enjoy improved vision after the procedure. Cataract surgery continues to improve. Recent developments include no-stitch surgery, topical anesthesia, surgical correction of astigmatism, new upgraded premium lens designs, Laser Assisted Cataract Surgery, and Dr. Braverman's newly trademarked LACE™ procedure. The LACE™ procedure, if you are deemed a candidate, can nearly always guarantee that the patient will need no glasses for distance vision, and no glasses for distance or near vision if a multifocal lens implant is used. At the Braverman Eye Center, we are proud to offer the advanced AMO CATALYS® Precision Laser System, for unsurpassed Femtosecond Laser Assisted cataract surgery performance.

About Dr. Stanley Braverman
Dr. Stanley Braverman is a Voluntary Assistant Clinical Professor at the University of Miami School of Medicine’s Anne Bates Leach Eye Hospital/Bascom Palmer Eye Institute. He is also an Adjunct Associate Clinical Professor at the Nova Southeastern School of Optometry and the official LASIK and Cataract Surgeon for the Florida Panthers.

Along with treating patients, Dr. Braverman, a board certified ophthalmologist, has been a medical researcher, and is the inventor of several eye surgical instruments, and author of many articles for medical journals. Dr. Braverman's newly trademarked LACE™ procedure (Laser Assisted Cataract Extraction) provides the best possible cataract surgical results. He has lectured at professional meetings about upgraded lens implants, advanced cataract surgery and LASIK, both nationally and internationally. He has been recognized by Newsweek Magazine as one of the Fifteen Leaders in Laser Eye Surgery in 2011, and recently co-authored a book on Z-Lasik that is being distributed internationally. You can find it on

An initial cataract, LASIK or Collagen Cross Linking consultation can be scheduled by calling the Braverman Eye Center at: (954) 458-2112 or (305) 374-8694. For additional information please contact Regina Vasquez, Surgical Coordinator for cataract surgery, or Rosemary Hartford, LASIK and Corneal Collagen Cross-linking Surgical Coordin-ator, or visit the Braverman Eye Center website at www.braver - where you can watch a video of cataract or LASIK surgery and learn more about all of the latest advances in cataract surgery and upgraded lens implants, as well as LASIK Surgery, including Near-Far Multifocal PresbyLASIK, for patients over 40 years old who require glasses for both distance and near vision. There is plenty of information on Collagen Cross Linking too. In addition to Dr. Stanley Braverman, a Refractive Cataract and LASIK Laser Vision Correction surgeon, your other subspecialty eye care needs can also be evaluated and treated. On staff at the Braverman Eye Center are Rashid Taher MD FACS and Tirso Lara MD FACS, Vitreo-Retinal surgeons; Andre Sarraga MD FACS, Ophthalmic Plastic, Reconstructive and Cosmetic Surgeon; Aarup Kubal MD FACS, Complex Glaucoma Specialist and Corneal Surgeon; Eric Ciliberti MD, Neuro-Ophthalmologist; Alan Lane MD FACS, General Ophthalmology and Glaucoma Care; Jonathan Leon-Rosen MD FACS, Glaucoma Surgery and Oculoplastics; and Ryan Y. Hargreaves OD, Shalonda McCallum OD and Youssef Choucair OD. All sub-specialist surgeons at the Braverman Eye Center are Board Certified.

At the Braverman Eye Center in Hollywood, Dr. Stanley Braverman and his amazing staff have been able to help so many patients - like Lydia Harris - realize the dream of seeing without the use of glasses. Braverman Eye Center is located at: 1050 N. Federal Highway, Hollywood, Florida 33020. 

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