Shortly after Clarin Eye Care invested $50,000 in a piece cutting-edge of technology, a woman walked in for a wellness exam. After a scan on the new equipment, Dr. Adam Clarin told her she had a macular hole, a potentially blinding problem, and referred her to an ophthalmologist for surgery. The patient went to the doctor, only to be told there wasn’t a problem. Clarin then sent over the images from the scan. She was brought back into the ophthalmologist and scheduled for surgery.

“You aren’t going to find this equipment in a standard optometry practice,” states Clarin, who says the spectral domain optical coherence tomography (SD-OCT) is one of only two such machines in Miami-Dade County. “It’s an investment we made in our patients. We want to make sure we preserve their vision through advanced examination techniques.”

The technology, Clarin says, is all part of the improvements Clarin Eye Care started making five years ago when he joined the practice founded in 1981 by his father, Dr. Bruce Clarin.

Going into the family business wasn’t always part of the plan. When the younger Clarin was a child, he’d run to the chair in his father’s office and push the button that makes the machine go up and down. For most of his life, that’s about as much interest as he’d shown in optometry, until he was about to graduate from the University of Florida with a psychology degree. 

“I realized it would be nice to work with my dad and in the same community where I grew up.” Now, Clarin lives with his wife and two young children in Palmetto Bay. “I always liked people, and school was easy for me, so it all made sense. The idea that I could make my own schedule and be my own boss was appealing.”

So he surprised his father at dinner one night by telling him he wanted to pursue optometry.

“I don’t think he took me seriously because it’d been 21 years and I’d never mentioned it,” he recalls. “But I went back to school, and he got excited. He’s been teaching me ever since.”

After completing the four-year optometry program at Nova Southeastern University, he worked in retail optometry and spent a day or two a week building up his practice at his father’s office until he was ready to join him full-time.

About 18 months ago, the Clarins recruited Dr. Susan Sherr to join the practice. Their office, just south of Pinecrest at 14429 South Dixie Highway, takes most vision and medical insurance. Routine eye exams cost $85 and the wellness screening – the MRI-like scan and a scan that takes a picture of your eyes and allows the doctors to see 85 percent of your retina without dilation – is an additional $40. Also, they fit all types of contact lenses, including ones for those who don’t want to wear reading glasses, and sell fashion eyewear. 

Clarin recommends that adults get an exam once a year and children get a comprehensive eye exam before they start school. “A lot of people read the chart at the pediatrician’s office, but that misses quite a few problems,” he says.

He couldn’t be happier with his decision to join the profession consistently ranked as one of the best careers. “I like interacting with the patients,” he says. “I like the relationships I’ve developed with people in the community. And, I like problem solving, when people come in and they can’t see something and I can usually find the solution.”