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Implant Could Help Blind See Light

A new electronic retinal implant could help treat blindness caused by retinitis pigmentosa. FDA has approved an Investigational Device Exemption for Second Sight Medical Products Inc. (Sylmar, CA) to conduct a clinical study of its retinal stimulator.

According to a Health & Medicine Week article on devicelink.com, the Argus II device contains electrodes that are attached to the retina and used in combination with an external camera and video processing system. The implant should be able to provide a basic form of sight for patients. Second Sight is the only manufacturer of an actively-powered permanent retinal prosthesis implant that is under clinical study in the United States, according to the article. Retinitis pigmentosa causes a gradual loss of peripheral vision that can eventually lead to blindness. This implant could be a significant development for patients with few treatment options.

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