New Treatment for Macular holes
Recent approval of Jetrea (Ocriplasmin) to treat symptomatic VMA (Vitreo Macular Adhesion) has opened up a new era in non surgical management of macular holes. Previously only a hospital based surgery was able to reverse the process of macular hole development but now a new drug can be injected into the eye painlessly in the office and within a few weeks the process reverses back to more normal vision levels.... more
FDA Approves ASRS Leader's ArgusŪ II Artificial Retina
On February 14, the FDA approved the Argus II artificial retina developed by ASRS Executive Committee and Board Member Mark S. Humayun, MD, PhD.
This breakthrough technology is the first ever to offer limited vision to patients with late-stage retinitis pigmentosa (RP).
Second Sight Medical Products (Sylmar, CA) manufactures the Argus II implant, which has 60 electrodes and a tiny camera mounted on eyeglasses to capture images.
The FDA approved Argus II for adults age 25 years or older with severe to profound RP. About 10,000 to 15,000 of the 100,000 Americans with RP will qualify for Argus II. Up to 4,000 patients a year can be treated with the device.
Macular degeneration and Aspirin?
Aspirin and Macular degeneration... is there an increase in the wet form of macular degeneration in those patients taking aspirin? The wet form develops quicker than the dry form. It may only be related to the fact that you are more likely to take aspirin if you have medical problems like stroke or heart attacks in the past and these conditions are more commonly associated with wet age related macular degeneration. ... more
The eye’s colored iris acts as a camera shutter and helps control the amount of light that enters the eye. Fluid known as aqueous humor consistently bathes and nourishes the iris, cornea and lens; leaving the eye through a drainage angle. Open-angle Glaucoma of the eye occurs when the rate of new aqueous production exceeds the rate of drainage of this fluid. In particularly severe cases, neovascular glaucoma, a form of closed-angle glaucoma, can occur. With this condition, new, abnormal blood vessels grow on the iris, causing it to completely block fluid drainage and leading to a buildup of eye pressure. A glaucoma shunt is a small silicone tube connected to an oval shaped silicone plate or disk. It is implanted on the sclera of the eye, under the eyelid to relieve pressure and help drain fluid.
If you and your physician elect to implant a glaucoma shunt, you will begin the process with work-up labs and paper work approximately one week before your surgery in the hospital. You may be given eye drops to use in the days prior to your procedure. On the day of your treatment you will go to the hospital, you will be given local or general anesthesia to numb your eye and your surgeon will use a small instrument to hold your eye open during the procedure. Small incisions are made in the white part of your eye, the tube is inserted, and then it is sutured into place, typically with an absorbable suture to protect against over-filtration. Once it is sutured firmly in the correct position, the small incisions in the eye are closed with very small, fine sutures. A patch graft of donor sclera may be used to cover the shunt to protect it. Over the next 3-8 weeks a fibrous capsule will form over the shunt and the sutures will absorb, allowing it to function normally.
Following the implantation of the shunt, patients can go home or stay one night in the hospital as it is considered out patient surgery. You may experience swollen, red or scratchy eyes, but alert your doctor if these symptoms become severe or last longer than a few weeks. After release from the hospital you may have to wear an eye patch for the first day.
- Implantation of the shunt could prevent high eye pressure and further vision loss
- This is a semi-permanent change to the eye that keeps working for a long time.
- Side effects or complications of the procedure can include over-filtration (pressure too low in the eye), under-filtration (pressure to high in the eye), infection, bleeding, retinal swelling, retinal detachment, retinal tear, cataract formation, vitreous hemorrhage, development of scar tissue, vision loss, double vision, and/or droopy eyelid. However, your physician will generally only recommend the procedure if he feels that the benefits of the procedure outweigh the potential risks.
- Other procedures may be performed in conjunction to achieve desired results.