New Laser Surgery Device and new Method to Correct Cataract Surgery Induced Cloudy Eye Lens

New Laser Surgery Device and new Method to Correct Cataract Surgery Induced Clou

The leading cause of visual loss in adults age 55 and older, cataracts occur when the normally clear ocular lens in an eye becomes cloudy. As the cataract progresses, a person’s vision becomes blurrier, requiring surgery to replace the lens. Age-related macular degeneration is the leading cause of visual impairment and blindness among people 60 and older. At the very end stages of this disease, vision is very poor and quality of life is compromised.


In low and middle income countries, the leading causes of blindness – cataract and trachomatous trichiasis – occur more frequently in women. Population-based surveys of blindness in Africa, Asia and many high income countries suggest that women account for 65% of all blind people worldwide. At the same time, women do not have equal access to surgery for eye diseases. Cataract blindness could be reduced by about 13% if women received cataract surgery at the same rate as men. Women are more likely to wait until they are blind to undergo surgery.

Moreover, older people who are visually impaired may be more likely to be admitted to a nursing home, accounting for the higher rate among residents, and that people in nursing homes may be less likely to either have access to an eye doctor or use prescription eyeglasses. There may also be a lack of eye care professionals serving nursing home residents, according to the researchers.

Cataract removal is a procedure to remove a clouded lens (cataract) from the eye. Cataracts are removed to improve vision. The procedure almost always includes the replacing the lens of the eye with an artificial lens. Surgery is usually recommended for people who have loss of vision or visual abnormalities caused by cataracts.

Researchers have identified the genetics behind a common form of glaucoma, opening the way to better diagnosis and treatment of the sight-robbing condition. Two variants of a gene designated LOXL 1 increase the risk of what is called exfoliative glaucoma, in which clumps of a molecular fiber called elastin build up in the eye, increasing fluid pressure that gradually destroys the optic nerve, the scientists said. The elastin fibers are cross-linked by the LOXL 1 protein. They have found the gene and have shown the biological plan of how a mutation can cause glaucoma. Genetic effects are important even in such a clearly age-related disease as nuclear cataract.

In cataract surgery, the ophthalmologist removes the clouded lens from your eye and replaces it with a clear, artificial lens. This lens is very durable and should last for the rest of your life. Your vision after cataract surgery generally doesn't deteriorate over time.

It seems that sunlight exposure throughout a lifetime may be important to cataract formation," the author’s conclude. The researchers found that high ambient solar radiation is associated with a 2.5-fold increased risk of cortical cataracts and a 4.0-fold increased risk of mixed cataracts. High ambient solar radiation also was associated with a 2.9-fold increased risk of cataract surgery.

Currently, patients experience refractive errors after cataract surgery because of unpredictable wound healing, inaccuracies in pre-operative measurements of ocular dimensions, or pre-existing corneal disorders such as astigmatism. Nearly three million cataract surgeries are performed every year in the United States. The majority of patients must wear prescription glasses after the procedure to see properly.

In normal adults, the eye's photoreceptors -- about 130 million rods and cones which enable us to see light and color -- are aligned towards the centers of the pupil, where light is brightest. Study found that like a field of sunflowers nodding toward the sun, photoreceptors - the light-sensitive cells in the retina of the eye - can apparently swiftly reorient themselves towards the brightest points of light after cataract surgery.

With trabeculectomy, the traditional surgical approach, a pathway is created through a series of incisions, by which the extra fluid in the eye can escape. The fluid is funneled to another part of the eye where it is then absorbed into the bloodstream. But unfortunately roughly 6 percent of patients who undergo a type of surgery called "trabeculectomy" for advanced glaucoma will experience severe loss of central vision, according to a report.

Many LASIK patients notice a temporary decreased in night vision with symptoms that include glare, halos, and starbursts. Some patients experience dry eyes post-operatively. Nearsighted patients who experience an overcorrection will become farsighted and will notice immediately that they can no longer see near objects as well. Conversely those who have been under corrected will notice that objects in a distance are still not perfectly clear.

Even if a glaucoma patient's eye pressure remains low overall, fluctuations in eye pressure may still be associated with a shrinking peripheral field of vision. Glaucomatous visual field damage cannot be stabilized by only lowering the postoperative IOP but also requires reducing the long-term fluctuation of the post-operative IOP," the researchers concluded.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved the first LASIK device designed to treat one eye to see far-away objects and the other eye to see things that are close up.

The CustomVue Monovision device is designed to correct all nearsightedness in the dominant eye and only part of the nearsightedness in the other eye, the agency said. This allows use of the fully corrected eye for distance, and the partially corrected eye for objects that are close.

Recently,Prof. Ehud Assia and Dr. Ami Eyel of IOPtima are testing a new laser surgery device specifically designed to make glaucoma procedures safer, simpler and faster.One of a small number of surgeons in the world who currently perform a complicated form of glaucoma surgery, Prof. Assia has developed a novel laser device that promises to revolutionize treatment of the disease. The laser, called the OTS134 for now, is expected to give most practicing eye surgeons the ability to master complex glaucoma surgery very quickly.

The most common surgical treatment in use today perforates the wall of the eye, often resulting in collapse of the eyeball, infection, cataract formation and other complications. A more effective and elegant approach, a specialty of Prof. Assia's, involves penetration of the eye wall to a depth of only about 95 percent, leaving a razor-thin layer intact. The difference between success and failure may amount to just a few microns.

This highly-specialized non-penetrating surgery, requiring years of rigorous training and great skill, is performed by only a small number of surgeons at leading international ophthalmology centers. But a small observation led Prof. Assia to think about a method that could make the procedure accessible to eye surgeons without the long and involved training.

A newly developed method for coating the intraocular lenses (IOLs) used in millions of cataract surgery procedures may prevent a common complication of cataract surgery, according to a new report. Such surgery corrects the vision loss that occurs when the lens of the eye becomes clouded.

Christine Jérôme and colleagues report development of a method for applying a polyethylene glycol coating to IOLs. In laboratory experiments, researchers showed that the coating reduced accumulation of the protein film and adhesion of cells responsible for formation of secondary cataracts.

The coating did not affect the optical properties of the lens. It also could be applied to certain other surfaces in order to discourage undesirable protein accumulation and adhesion of cells, the report states.

During the operation, a small incision in the front of the lens capsular bag is used to remove the clouded crystalline lens. The IOL is inserted into the empty capsular bag. Researchers noted that IOL replacement surgery is a safe and well-established procedure to correct the vision loss from a cataract.

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