9, 2010 when Olympic Gold Medalist Bobsledder
Steve Holcomb and Dr. Brian were on Dr. Phil’s
The Doctors television show, Dr. Brian announced
that the name “C3-R” will
be changed to “Holcomb C3-R” in honor
of Steve Holcomb. This marked the first
time in history that a treatment for a disease
was named after the athlete who made the treatment
here to watch the naming of Holcomb C3-R on The
is more common now than ever before. Once thought
to occur in 1 in 2000 people, it is now 1 in 500 people
(400% more common than in the past).
Dr. Brian is considered
the "Guru of Modern Crosslinking." People
regularly come from all over the United States, Canada,
and other countries for his treatments. He invented
non--surgical Holcomb C3-R® (corneal
collagen cross-linking riboflavin) that can strengthen
the weak corneal structure in keratoconus. (see
publications/ research section in right column).
method works by increasing collagen cross-linking,
which are most of the natural "anchors" within the
cornea. These anchors are largely responsible for
preventing the cornea from bulging out and becoming
steep and irregular (which is the cause of keratoconus).
Listen to Dr. Howard's
story of keratoconus.
Listen to Norris' experience
3 years after treatment.
figures above show the parallel corneal layers
(white) and the collagen cross-linking (red) which
are typically increased after Holcomb C3-R®
Dr. Brian invented
the Holcomb C3-R®
- a non-invasive 30-minute, in-office procedure
to better and safer for people than CXL which requires
disruption of the epithelium. During Holcomb
our proprietary Crosslinking Solution (containing
riboflavin and other compounds) is applied to the
cornea, which is then activated by a special light.
in 2002, Holcomb C3-R® has the longest
track record of all crosslinking techniques
in the United States, Canada, Latin America &
South America, Asia, and Europe (with the exception
of Germany). With Holcomb C3-R®,
you know you are getting “the real thing”
developed by modern crosslinking guru, Dr. Brian.
Dr. Brian developed a unique system that allows
both eyes to be treated at the same time.
You won't have to come back on another day for the
second eye to be treated which people find to be very
is special and proprietary - it is only available
at our office - it is not available anywhere else.
Removing the epithelium (as done with CXL)
creates a painful recovery and significantly increases
risk of infection, corneal haze, scarring, and corneal
nerve trauma requiring 6 months to recover.
The non-invasive Holcomb C3-R®
allows patients to return to their normal routine
the very next day!
Our studies and studies of other eye doctors in outside
countries have shown patient results are not signficantly
different with crosslinking with removal of epithelium
vs. leaving epithelium undisturbed in its place.
Therefore, it is not necessary to scrape off the
epithelium for crosslinking and is safer without
scraping off epithelium. Please visit
for more information on results of Holcomb C3-R®
vs epi-off (CXL) corneal crosslinking.
treatments can also be combined with Intacs to help
flatten the keratoconus cone even more than with Intacs
alone - a technique also pioneered by Dr. Brian.
In these cases, Holcomb C3-R®
treatments helped stabilize keratoconus from getting
worse as well the Intacs helping in part to reverse
the keratoconus steepening that had already occurred
up to the time of the treatment.
figure above demonstrates almost 10 diopters of
corneal flattening in one patient before (left)
after this Holcomb C3-R + Intacs treatments (right).
C3-R® is also helping
patients after radial keratotomy by improving stability
and reducing vision fluctuations during the day.
Please click here for further information about how
RK patients can be helped. www.keratoconusinserts.com/RK.
In 2002, Dr. Brian was the
first doctor in North America to use corneal collagen
crosslinking for Keratoconus (now called Holcomb C3-R®)
as well as being the first doctor in the world to
combine corneal collagen crosslinking with Intacs.
After Dr. Brian pioneered corneal collagen
crosslinking, he was the first doctor in the world
to present crosslinking results at a scientific meeting. There
were many "doubter doctors" in the beginning
- one doctor even told Dr. Brian that it's impossible
for corneal collagen crosslinking to work. Following
Dr. Brian's numerous presentations, doctors in
other countries finally began to take notice and started
looking at the procedure for their Keratoconus patients.
Thankfully due to Dr. Brian's dedication and hard
work, this procedure is now commonplace in many doctors
practices around the world.
Dr. Brian has been performing collagen crossllinking
for over 8 years - Dr. Brian has the LONGEST
experience in corneal collagen crosslinking in the
United States, Canada, and all other countries (except
for Germany). Would you trust your
precious eyes to someone who just learned how to do
Dr. Brian "wrote the book" on Keratoconus
- "Modern Management of Keratoconus" which
has now been translated into Spanish for all the Latin
American countries. This book is used for teaching
eye doctors around the world about the latest
advancements in crosslinking and other Keratoconus
For more extensive and detailed background
information on Holcomb C3-R®,
including research studies, please click on
REVIEW AND CONSULTATION FOR OUT-OF-TOWN PATIENTS
Many out-of-town patients would like Dr. Brian to
do a complimentary review of their medical records
and make a preliminary determination of candidacy.
This is useful before planning a trip to Beverly Hills.
These are the steps:
- Along with your last 2 or 3 eye exams, please
be sure to include a color copy of your corneal
mapping. Color corneal mapping is a very important
tool, along with your exam history, to determine
your candidacy. The last 2 years of your total eye
history will be used to make this preliminary determination.
- Inside the envelope, please be sure to include
a cover sheet with your name address, phone number
and email address and the words, “Keratoconus
Record Review”, so that we may optimize communication
- Enclose with your letter a copy
of your records.
Boxer Wachler Vision Institute
Keratoconus Record Review
465 N. Roxbury Drive, Suite 902
Beverly Hills, CA 90210
Or, you can scan your
records and email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Dr. Brian will contact you to discuss the review.
If you have any questions, please
call us at 310-860-1900.
2010 Vision Awards
Brian and Steve Holcomb were honored at the 2010 Vision
Awards for their historic accomplishments that led
to a Gold Medal at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver.
Dr. Brian received the Jules Stein Living Tribute
Award and Steve received the Athlete of Vision Award.
Many celebrities were on hand including Will.i.am
of the Black Eyed Peas, astronaut Buzz Aldrin, comedienne
Lilly Tomlin, cosmetic dentist Dr. Bill Dorfman, and
actor Billy Bob Thornton among many others.
Holcomb at the podium
Brian before the press
Holcomb with his gold medal and plaque
Dr. Brian & Steve
How Holcomb C3-R Was Developed
The first 1998 publication of crosslinking
was with epithelium removal and it showed ability
to stabilize the disease, but it reported pain in
recovery and corneal swelling side effects (future
studies would show many more side effects from epithelium-removal
crosslinking such as corneal ulcers, cornea haze,
very slow recovery, partial loss of vision, etc).
Nonetheless after this publication, there was one
peculiar thing: no one was performing crosslinking.
The publication was out there, but went largely unnoticed
by the ophthalmology community and medical societies.
It was the equivalent of a "silent shot in the
dark." Not one doctor around the world seemed
to notice this publication in 1998, except one doctor:
I was fascinated when I read this study
as I was already was pioneering the use of Intacs®
for Keratoconus as an alternative to invasive corneal
transplants that carry significant risks. After my
own research into crosslinking, I quickly realized
that scaping off the epithelium will cause a lot of
pain during the recovery and other potential problems.
I thought, "there MUST be a better way!"
worked to develop a way to perform crosslinking WITHOUT
needing to do the invasive step of scraping off the
cornea's epithelium top layer . After many, many nights
working on this after hours, I finally discovered
a method to obtain successful results. Was it possible
to have a completely non-invasive procedure that stops
Keratoconus in its tracks without the risks that epithelium
removal crosslinking inherently carries? The answer
was a resounding "YES!" After this discovery,
I could hardly sleep that night.
remember very vividly our first patient in January
of 2003. He is a very famous movie producer in Hollywood
(due to patient privacy, I cannot mention his name,
but you would know his movies and the A-list stars
of those movies), He unfortunately had Keratoconus
develop after LASIK. I explained the nature of this
new procedure that I invented. (I hadn't given it
a name then). He was open to it and trusted me. The
results were incredible: we stopped his Keratoconus
from progressing and he was very happy. And best of
all: he was back at the work the very next day after
the procedure, no discomfort, no time off work, no
change in his life. It was amazing, just a one day
I discussed with my wife Selina my excitement.
On a plane flight with Selina shortly afterwards,
I explained the nature of the procedure and that it
needed to have a simple name. It would be hard for
people to say: riboflavin in the cornea for collagen
crosslinking. A lot of great ideas have been written
on the back of a napkin. I suppose we can add the
naming of this procedure to that list. Years ago I
learned an process to help with creativity. You draw
the words of interest in a circle and then keep looking
at the words. Usually with time the solution will
hit you. On the back of a United Airlines napkin I
did this with Selina at my side.
the name of the procedure jumped out like a jack-in-box
from the circle of words: C3-R®. There were three
words with letter "C" (corneal collagen
crosslinking) and one word with "R" (riboflavin).
Eventually I obtained a United States Trademark for
C3-R®. Since the C3-R® procedure is distinctly
different from invasive epithelium removal crosslinking
and other "home grown" epithelium-on crosslinking
that some other doctors are trying to do now, I wanted
to be sure we protected our established crosslinking
By doing this, the proprietary C3-R®
procedure could never be confused with less desirable
or unproven crosslinking techniques. C3-R® now
has over 8 years behind it. People know and trust
C3-R® since it has stood the test of time and
has an Olympic Gold medal behind it.
It's like with Coke® that is a protected
brand owned by The Coca-Cola Company. When you buy
a Coke®, you know exactly what you're getting.
You know it won't taste different from what you expect.
You know Coke® is made from the secret formula
locked in a vault somewhere deep in The Coca-Cola
Company headquarters in Atlanta, Georgia. You know
if you buy a Coke, it's not a cheap knockoff from
another company they call "Coke" because
The Coca-Cola Company owns the trademark for Coke.
These are all the same reasons that C3-R® is trademarked
(and yes, our secret formula is also locked in a vault).
People know with C3-R® they are getting the "real
2007, our Keratoconus patient Steve Holcomb, the top
bobsled driver for the United States Olympic team,
regained 20/20 vision from C3-R® and Visian ICL
and came back from vision-related retirement. He won
Olympic Gold at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver,
the first Olympic Gold for the U.S. in 62 years. On
April 9, 2010 when Steve and I were on Dr. Phil's
The Doctors television show, I announced the name
modification of "C3-R®" to "Holcomb
C3-R®" in honor of Steve Holcomb. This marked
the first time in history that a treatment for a disease
was named after an Olympic athlete who made the treatment
world-famous. Because of the massive media exposure
about Steve's Olympic accomplishment and his comeback
from Keratoconus, people around the world now know
there are options besides invasive and painful cornea