Laser Vision Correction Offers Independence For Man Living With Paralysis

Kugler Vision in Omaha Nebraska will provide LASIK vision correction to improve quality of life for local man through a national program for those affected by disability.

OMAHA– An estimated one in fifty Americans lives with some form of paralysis. For those with physical limitations affecting the arms and hands, relying on contacts and glasses adds another level of frustrating complexity to the daily routine. There must always be a family member or caregiver nearby who is able to help.

Meet Joey

Joey Bierman, a 23 year old Nebraska man living with the aftermath of a C7 vertebrae injury, understands better than most that everything in life can change in the blink of an eye. In 2016, the Wayne State College Senior was on vacation with classmates. An accidental fall during a friendly wrestling match led to a broken back, and paralysis that affected all four limbs.

“It’s hard to find things where you can be completely independent. My hands are affected due to the injury so putting in contacts is almost impossible for me to do,” says Joey, “After the injury I had to wear glasses every single day. That’s not something I was accustomed to doing.”

Now, Joey is looking forward to a simpler, more independent lifestyle. On Wednesday February 8, he will receive LASIK at no charge. Lance Kugler, MD, will perform the procedure through Kugler Vision’s participation in the Focus on Independence program.

What is Focus on Independence?

Focus on Independence is a non-profit that seeks to improve the lives of disabled individuals who cannot use their arms or hands to handle glasses and contact lenses. The program was founded in 2003 and offers services nationwide. Participating surgeons provide complimentary surgical vision correction for these individuals, and with it, a new look at life. “It just goes to show that people definitely care about this new community of mine,” says Joey, “It definitely sheds a bright light on something that can tend to be dark.”

“Joey experienced a sudden change in his lifestyle after his injury. Laser eye surgery is one small thing we can do to help him maximize his quality of life,” says Lance Kugler, MD. He continues, “Joey’s got a great attitude. He’s an inspiration to all of us, and it is a tremendous honor to be able to help him.”

As a former defensive back for the Wayne State Wildcats, Joey has always been an ambitious and competitive person on and off the field. Fortunately, he’s also known for his positivity. He wants others in his position to know that there are resources out there– “Half the battle in something like this is being positive. Go out and use all your resources that are available to you. That’s how I found out about this program– just trying and never really stopping.”

Dr. Kugler is available to the media to speak further on the benefits of the Focus on Independence Program and how laser vision correction can be used to improve the well-being of individuals with paralysis.

More About Kugler Vision

Kugler Vision is a world-class refractive surgery center located in the middle of the country, making Omaha a destination for incredible vision correction outcomes. As a patient-centric practice, Kugler Vision specializes in procedures to reduce or eliminate reliance on glasses and contact lenses. Dr. Kugler serves as the Director of Refractive Surgery for the University of Nebraska Medical Center, is a founder and first President of the Refractive Surgery Alliance, and participates in numerous FDA clinical trials.

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