Isabelle Molle was still struggling with symptoms of a concussion following a 2019 car collision when her mother sent her a Facebook posting about the Mind-Eye Institute and its work on behalf of patients with head injuries and other neurological problems. “I was skeptical at first, but then I went to the Mind-Eye web site and learned that people from all over the world are going there for help. I also read about some of the research behind [the Mind-Eye science],” she says.
So, Isabelle gave the Institute a shot in late 2021 – even though the Mind-Eye Institute, headquartered in Northbrook, Illinois, is more than 800 miles from her home in the state of New York. And she has never looked back.
“I received my first pair of Mind-Eye glasses on New Year’s Eve 2021. Since then, my headaches – and brain fog -- have diminished; my ability to read has improved; I am no longer overwhelmed by sounds, lights, and movement in restaurants, stores, and other public places; and conversations are easier. I am able to stay engaged when talking with others,” says Isabelle.
Most importantly, Isabelle has successfully carried a 4.0 grade point average through her first year of graduate school, working toward a master’s degree in library science. “Without my Mind-Eye glasses, I would not have been at all comfortable attempting graduate studies,” she states.
“As of today (September 2023), I would say I am 85-90 percent recovered from my [head] injury."
(Isabelle started treatment at Mind-Eye December 2021)
“As of today (September 2023), I would say I am 85-90 percent recovered from my [head] injury.”
Surprising? Not to Mind-Eye optometrists Deborah Zelinsky OD and Carla Adams OD. For them, being told by patients, “You’ve helped me get my life back,” has become almost routine. Isabelle is only one of many helped by the Mind-Eye Institute team, based in Northbrook, Illinois. The practice is internationally recognized for its scientific use of therapeutic eyeglasses and other advanced optometric tools to stimulate the retina by manipulating the amount, angle, and intensity of light passing through it. Such manipulation can create changes in the brain function of patients struggling with the symptoms of concussion -- like that sustained by Isabelle, traumatic head injury (TBI), stroke, and other neurological disorders.
About TBI, Concussion, and Visual Processing
Healthy brains interpret and respond to the surrounding world at many different levels almost instantaneously. That ability is often termed visual processing – namely, the processing and interpretation of many diverse kinds of sensory signals from the surrounding environment. Visual processing is what makes us who we are. It combines incoming sensory information with previously stored experiences. That combination is then attached with emotion to enable other processes to occur – like communication, comprehension, self-expression, decision-making, organization of time and thoughts, and judgment.
But a concussion, or traumatic brain injury (TBI), alters a person’s visual processing capabilities. It interferes with mental imagery, creativity, perception, and all the other skills required for visualization. Visualization “means using your imagination.” This visual skill takes place internally on what Mind-Eye Institute practitioners term a “mental desktop.” It is one aspect of visual processing.
Specifically, injury to the brain disrupts the brain’s electrical and biochemical circuitry, causing some patients to become confused about their surrounding environment and exhibit inappropriate reactions and responses to movement or sounds. Sight and hearing systems are no longer synchronized.
At the Mind-Eye Institute
At the Mind-Eye Institute, brain-injured patients undergo thorough examination with advanced technology and testing techniques to measure visual performance and visual processing functions. The Mind-Eye team then prescribes highly individualized eyeglasses or other optometric interventions to:
- Maximize visual processing capabilities and create a more solid balance between auditory and visual localization.
- Improve perception of the surrounding environment
- Help rebuild brain pathways or develop new pathways that enhance ability to understand and interact with others.
“Customized changes to the brain oftentimes bring relief to TBI patients." -Deborah Zelinsky, OD
“Changing the way light passes through the retina can modify the dynamic relationship between the mind’s visual inputs and the body’s internal reactions and responses. The implication is that retinal stimulation with light intentionally promotes customized changes in a patient’s systems involved in metabolism, motor control, posture, mood, circadian rhythms, and decision-making abilities,” explains Dr. Zelinsky, who founded the Mind-Eye Institute, currently serves as its research director, and is known globally as an expert on visual processing.
These “customized, light-induced changes” to the brain are what oftentimes bring relief to patients experiencing the headaches, brain fog, concentration and attention difficulties, and constant fight-or-flight stress due to brain injury or genetic mutations and disease, Dr. Zelinsky notes.
Isabelle’s story begins when the car in which she was riding was rear-ended. The force whipped her head – back into the passenger seat headrest and then forward again. “I awoke the next day with a splitting headache that felt like the worst hangover I had ever experienced,” says Isabelle, who was in her mid-20s at the time.
As if the headaches were not challenging enough, Isabelle started slurring her words and stuttering, developed sound and light sensitivities, had problems reading, and experienced difficulties in talking to others. “I would be in the middle of a conversation, and suddenly I would forget what I was saying or would be unable to come up with the necessary words to express myself,” she relates.
Head injury symptoms also affected her work as an assistant at a local library. “My brain was overwhelmed. Scanning the labels on the book spines proved difficult enough, but I had to keep bending down and standing up to retrieve and return the books to the shelves,” Isabelle recalls. “Many days after work, I would come home so fatigued that I would have to lie down in a darkened room.”
Although her post-concussion symptoms decreased with time, they continued to prove troublesome, significantly impacting the quality of her life. That is until she made the fateful call to the Mind-Eye Institute.
“Before the Mind-Eye Institute, I felt stuck. Today, I am attending graduate school, no longer suffering constant headaches, and am able to participate in more things socially. Mind-Eye has helped give me my life back,” Isabelle says.
Although Isabelle Molle reports progressive symptom relief, her experience is not always the norm, nor is it guaranteed for every patient. Check out the Mind-Eye Institute at www.mindeye.com for additional information.