January 6, 2012 | POSTED BY | Articles, Clinical Optometry

By: Stefania Paniccia – IAUPR

Those of us who are fortunate enough to have invested in an iPad®, iPhone® or iPod touch® understand the efficiency and capacity of these incredible devices. They have transformed how we communicate and share information in our everyday, hectic lives. The familiar phrase “there’s an app for that” also applies to us ODs and future ODs, with an abundance of eye-related applications for our treasured hand-held gadgets. There are over 200,000 apps available in iTunes, and to filter out what is OD applicable is not only time consuming, but can be overwhelming to say the least. Fear not my friends, as I have scoured iTunes™ on your behalf! Many hours and iTunes™ credits later, I have generated a list of apps that I use and have found incredibly helpful with clinical rounds, study groups, and personal education.

1. Parks 3-step (Cost: $0.99)

Utilizing your device’s built-in gyroscope and accelerometer, this app will be able to predict the under-acting extraocular muscle in two swift movements! This a very quick and accurate way of performing the Parks 3-step test without diagrams. Compatible with iPad®, iPhone® or iPod touch®.

2. ICD-9 (with 2012 codes) (Cost: $0.99)

Highly rated and inexpensive compared to other apps with similar content. This app has complete offline access to more than17,500 codes with free updates. Compatible with iPad®, iPhone® or iPod touch®.

3. Optics Clinical Calculator (Cost: $4.99)

Includes streamlined, intuitive access to calculators used daily in prescribing lenses and understanding optics. Base curves, obliquely crossed cylinders, slab-off and much more are made easy with this efficient app. Compatible with iPad®, iPhone® or iPod touch®

4. Medical Lab Tests (Cost: $2.99)

Can you recall the normal value of a hematocrit or the reference value for amylase? This application will help you! Covers the most common laboratory tests and their interpretation. Compatible with iPad®, iPhone® or iPod touch®.

5. Neurology i-pocketcards (Cost: $3.99)

Concise tables that outline ocular movement disorders, ocular muscle innervations, cranial nerves, and much more. This is an excellent reference for student clinicians and those preparing for National Boards. Compatible with iPad®, and iPhone®.

6. iMedsXL (Cost: $3.99)

Over 7,300 FDA-approved medications and is the only app to provide full prescribing information. The advantage to this app is its offline access search via drug name or drug class, including contraindications. Compatible with iPad®.

7. Eponyms for students (Cost: FREE for the student version)

What’s an eponym you ask? It is the name of a person or thing, real or fictitious, after which a particular place, tribe, discovery, or other item is named. For example, our anatomy and clinical disease courses introduced us to eponyms such as Usher’s Syndrome and Addison’s disease. This app gives a short description of more than 1,700 common and obscure medical eponyms. Compatible with iPad®, iPhone® or iPod touch®.

8. Ophthalmology i-pocketcards (Cost $4.99)

Another quick reference guide for the student clinician including eye anatomy, management of refractive errors, images to test for color blindness, and much more.  Compatible with iPad®, iPhone® or iPod touch®.

9. EyeDock (Cost: FREE but requires an EyeDock membership)

Created by Todd M. Zarwell, OD, it is a companion app to eyedock.com, a website for eye care professionals. The EyeDock app contains a regularly updated database for contact lens fitting and ophthalmic medications. Dr. Zarwell has been kind to offer free membership for eyedock.com to optometry students and institutions for the duration of your attendance. For more information send a message to admin@eyedock.com or contact your school’s computer informatics department if a membership to eyedock.com is currently in effect.

10. Eye Handbook (Cost: FREE)

My absolute favorite optometry app and it’s free! With a pharmacopoeia, equipment reference, testing, coding, and media center for patient education, it is the most frequently used app on my iPad®. There are also excellent in-app purchases to add such as information for multifocal IOLs, punctal plugs, and uveitis. Compatible with iPad®, iPhone® or iPod touch®.

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Disclaimer: The opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of Apple Inc.™ or its affiliates.  Furthermore, the author of this article is not monetarily compensated by Apple Inc.™, its affiliates, or through the promotion of the products listed herein. The author has no financial interests or investments in the listed applications, and has not participated in the creation of the applications. All rights belong to the authors and Apple Inc.™.  Readers of this article should not rely solely on the listed applications in diagnosing or treating a condition. The author of this article is basing their recommendation on their personal experience, and does not hold themselves to be an expert in the use or appropriateness of each item.