On April 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 world-famous. Click here to watch the naming of Holcomb C3-R on The Doctors.
Keratoconus 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).
This 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).
|The figures above show the parallel corneal layers (white) and the collagen cross-linking (red) which are typically increased after Holcomb C3-R® treatment.
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 C3-R®, our proprietary Crosslinking Solution (containing riboflavin and other compounds) is applied to the cornea, which is then activated
by a special light.
Invented 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 inconvenient.
Holcomb C3-R® 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 www.KeratoconusInserts.com for more information on results of Holcomb C3-R® vs epi-off (CXL) corneal crosslinking.
Holcomb C3-R® 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.
|The figure above demonstrates almost 10 diopters of corneal flattening in one patient before (left) after this Holcomb C3-R + Intacs treatments (right).
Holcomb 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
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 the procedure?
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 treatments.
For more extensive and detailed background information on Holcomb C3-R®, including research studies, please click on www.KeratoconusInserts.com.
CHART 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 with you.
- 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 email@example.com.
Dr. Brian will contact you to discuss the review.
If you have any questions, please call us at 310-860-1900.
2010 Vision Awards
Dr. 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
Listen to Dr. Howard's story of keratoconus.
Listen to Norris' experience 3 years
Click below for videos.
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: myself.
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!"
I 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.
I 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 recovery.
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
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 thing."
In 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 transplants.