In 1998, Jerry Colp traveled to the Havener Eye Institute from his home in Dayton, Ohio to try to save the remaining sight in his right eye. He met with Paul Weber, MD, and through laser surgery, his vision was saved.
Since his initial surgery, he has contributed funds to the Institute to acquire new research and clinical imaging equipment to advance the study of glaucoma as well as other vision-threatening conditions. Supporting the work of the researchers and physicians at Ohio State can create hope for others struggling with devastating eye disease.
“Just saying ‘thank-you’ is not good enough for me,” says the retired real estate broker. “I want to help put the Havener Eye Institute on the map to be the finest in the United States. With this equipment, my hope is that the doctors will be able to save the eyesight of many, many people. That is what it’s all about.”
Jerry has donated several ocular imaging devices. He helped acquire the Stratus Optical Coherence Tomograph (OCT), which uses reflected light to create real-time cross-sectional images of the retina and optic nerve. Next, Jerry donated the Heidelberg Retina Tomograph (HRT), a confocal scanning laser ophthalmoscope which produces 3D images of the optic nerve head. Most recently, he donated the Optovue OCT—an ultra-high speed, high resolution OCT. Each of these machines enhances the probability of detecting subtle changes in the eye suggestive of glaucomatous progression—stopping glaucoma earlier than ever before. The OCT also is useful for monitoring a variety of retinal diseases including age related macular degeneration (AMD).
In addition to these devices, Jerry was instrumental in acquiring a Corneal Confocal Microscope, a device which produces in vivo corneal imaging used for the detection and monitoring of infectious and hereditary corneal diseases.
“If over a period of 10-15 years—through the [donated] equipment--they’ve saved maybe a thousand eyes, then what is the money worth?”
Many would agree with his words as countless number of patients have benefitted and will continue to benefit from Jerry’s generosity for years to come.