Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Designs for Vision

Hey all,
Before I say a word I wanted to have a shout out to Dr. Ric for Monday's blog. Just awesome. The economy is real and is affecting a lot of dentists. I spoke to my Patterson rep and he talked about having to put a "hold" on seven of his dentists (meaning he is not allowed to sell them products anymore because they are so behind on their bill).Now he wasn't saying it like his profits are being cut, he was saying it like, "Oh, my gosh how bad does it have to be for these dentists if they can't pay the supply bill."
I appreciate Dr. Ric's transparency, and I hope you all liked it as much as I did. Great job Ric.
Finally I can talk about it. Gator football.
I know you all thought of me this weekend as the Gators were getting there asses handed to them. You were either all saying, "Oh my gosh, John is there, and he spent all this money and time and effort go and see the Gators play and man are they getting killed."
Or you might have said, "Ha, finally someone beat the Gators. Thank goodness I won't have to hear ESPN and John talking about them anymore, and I won't have to hear Tebow this and Gator that for at least 6 more months."
Either way I appreciate you thinking of me.
Well if you do care, I had a pretty good time in Atlanta. We went back to our favorite bar with the beer taps on the tables (Hello friend. Where have you been all my life?"). But really when you lose that night, the ride back is a bit of a drag.
We had a great run and you really can't be that upset.
Talking about being upset, there were two Gators in my section that almost came to blows twice during the game. When you mix alcohol and testosterone and a good butt whoop'n someone is bound to want to punch someone else (regardless of what team they root for).
It rained like crazy here in central Florida so the flag football games I was going to miss were rescheduled. So this week between the two teams I coach I have six games in 6 days.
Game tonight, Thursday, Friday, two games on Saturday, and the last game is on Monday.
Are you kidding me?
I wanted to talk about loupes.
In dental school I got this awesome deal on loupes. I bought the Designs for Vision 2.5.
I looked like Elvis Costello, but I could see like I have never seen before. And if you knew what kind of student I was you realized that I needed all the help I could get.
Before I go anywhere else I want to say that I am a big backer of loupes (or all types of magnification). I think they make people better dentists, and I think that if you don't have loupes you need to look at yourself in the mirror. Do you want to be the best dentist for your patients? If the answer is YES, then you need to get loupes.
I had those 2.5 for about 8 years. About 7 years ago I thought it was time to jump up in magnification, I think at my dad's pushing.
I was concerned about the decrease in field. But I made the jump to 3.5.
I have tried to go back to the 2.5 for a procedure or two, and it is like looking in the wrong end of binoculars, things are so small.
So last month I am finishing up a routine exam and I was taking my loupes off to just rap with the patient and they broke.
Mayday, mayday, we have broken loupes in room four.
The whole office stops what they are doing to help me because this is a major thing.
Because I have been using loupes for so long I just cannot work without them.
I occasionally try to do an exam on someone without my loupes, and I have to get so close to them to try to see it gets uncomfortable. "Can you please open more I need to just climb into your mouth so I can see?"
So we all realize how I rely on these things and they broke.
See the frame and the earpiece came apart. They are pretty well built and there is a cool piston on the earpiece so you can bring the earpieces out to get them around the ears when you take them off.
So you have a $1600 pair of glasses hanging on these pistons.
I tried not to panic. I have a patient in my chair.
I bust out my resin cement and put the piston back together. I put this fire out pretty quick.
I started to think about what I am going to do.
I called the company and told them that I needed my glasses repaired.
I told her the problem. She said it was my lucky day and that the frames had a lifetime warranty. See all the pistons and arms and everything were covered. So all the repairs will be free.
I said, "Awesome, so I am going to send them in."
"No problem," she said, "It will take about 7-10 business days"
"No, I don't think you understand. I use these glasses every day. I need you to rush the repair and get them back to me as soon as possible.
"Oh", she said, "in that case it will be 7-10 business days."
You see, everyone who wears these glasses is important. Surgeons, dentists, periodontists, urologists, OBGYNs, etc. Everyone who owns these glasses makes a lot of money.
There is no such thing as a rush order.
Okay so you have a product that is totally backed by the company but it doesn't do you any good because they can't repair anything fast.
So I was thinking to myself, I am going to have to go on a two week vacation before I have these things fixed. (Oh, that is going to happen real soon I would imagine...NOT).
In the meantime, I will just live with my self-repair for awhile. Just as I was thinking this the other side of the glasses broke. The other ear piece broke off the piston. This time the resin cement didn't hold. We tried it again. No luck.
So I did what any desperate person would do and cemented the pieces together with Superglue.
Don't we all laugh at our patients that Superglue their teeth together. Well I am sure the glasses people will laugh at my redneck butt when they get the glasses.
What was I suppose to do?
So I called my Design for Vision rep. She said she could send me a loaner pair.
Sounds like a good idea right?
Well the problem with that is that each pair of glasses is fitted to the individual. So the ones they will send me will be close but I wouldn't be able to see that great with them.
Does not sound like a good alternative?
So my choice is to work without them, use my 2.5's that are also glued together, or use a loaner pair, or go on vacation long enough to get these things repaired. Or the last choice was to buy a new pair.
I started to think about it. I need these glasses more than anything else in this office. If my suction wasn't working, would I think about doing anything else but fix it or replace it PERIOD. There would be no discussion.
I need them. My thought process was that if I have two pair I would never have to worry about them again. I would never have this decision to make again.
I would never have to think about vacations and glasses repair. I would never have to Superglue my eyewear ever again.
But factoring into this problem is that they are $1600. No the decimal point is not in the wrong place. Did I tell you that I am tighter than two coats of paint?
I kept saying to myself as I was dialing the reps number, "This is the best thing to do, this is the best thing for your patients, this is the right thing to do. I would like to order another pair of loupes please, this is the best thing to do. I know how much they are please just take my credit card number fast, this is the best thing for my patients, yes I know that it will take 3 to 4 weeks to have made, this is the right thing to do. Thank you, good bye."
Once you have loupes they have you by the you know whats. They should call you a month after you get your first pair and tell you that they will give you a discount on a second pair.
Because when these things break, full warranty or not, you are in big trouble.
As I sit here, it has been three weeks since I ordered my second pair. The Superglue is working like a charm (you have never seen a man be more gentle with anything in your life). And every day I tell myself, "It was the only thing you could have done."
Thank you sir can I have another.
Have a great Wednesday,

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