Tiniest FDA-Approved Medical Device Can Treat Glaucoma

Qmed Staff

September 12, 2013

1 Min Read
Tiniest FDA-Approved Medical Device Can Treat Glaucoma

Researchers at the University of Rochester announced the debut iStent glaucoma treatment device. According to physicians working at the university's Flaum Eye Institute, the iStent is the tiniest device to receive approval from FDA regulators.

"This is an amazing device to use to support patients who are suffering with glaucoma and cataracts who can't tolerate the many eye drops required every day," stated Dr. Shakeel Shareef, a surgeon who has used the iStent device 18 times in patients. Patients who have undergone the operation experienced a rapid recovery and a reduction in glaucoma symptoms.

The 1-mm-long iStent is made from titanium and has a 120-micron opening. When treating glaucoma, high pressure is the only factor that surgeons can target. In many cases, glaucoma is caused by poor eye draining. When the trabecular meshwork of the eye clogs, fluid can build up over time. This leads to an increase in intraocular pressure. With the iStent, fluids can bypass the trabecular meshwork, allowing them to drain out normally.

According to one 86-year-old patient, the iStent was able to improve color recognition and visual acuity.

As of now, the iStent is not available for use in children. FDA regulators have only approved the device for adults who currently use a daily regime of prescription eye drops to treat glaucoma.

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