CentraSight Treatment Program Offers New Hope for Seniors with End-Stage Macular Degenerationby Hot Off The Press (Release) on Jun. 20, 2013, under Press Releases
Tucson-based doctors first in the U.S. to implant an FDA-approved telescope in a patient’s eye
TUCSON, AZ (June 19, 2013) – The first U.S. patient was evaluated by and received the telescope implant procedure from Tucson-based ophthalmologists Henry L. Hudson, M.D., retinal specialist at Retina Centers, P.C. and Kristin Carter, M.D. , anterior segment eye surgeon. A total of five Arizona residents have now had this groundbreaking and technologically-advanced surgery for central blindness.
The first-of-its-kind telescope implant is integral to CentraSight®, a new patient care program for treating patients with end-stage age-related macular degeneration (AMD). It is the only medical/surgical option that improves visual acuity by reducing the impact of the central vision blind spot caused by end-stage AMD. The procedure is covered by Medicare.
Smaller than a pea, the telescope implant uses micro-optical technology to magnify images which would normally be seen in one’s “straight ahead” or central vision. The images are projected onto the healthy portion of the retina not affected by the disease, making it possible for patients to see and discern objects of interest within their central vision.
“After a decade of clinical trials and regulatory approvals, we are very excited to be able to offer this technology to help patients with the most debilitating form of AMD improve their vision and achieve a greater quality of life,” says Dr. Hudson, who was principal investigator in the pivotal trial for FDA approval and lead author of the trial outcomes in Ophthalmology and the American Journal of Ophthalmology. “To offer a treatment for the leading cause of blindness in older Americans is huge, and especially rewarding when you witness patients become more independent and reconnect with their friends and family. We are proud that this national milestone in ophthalmology occurred here in Tucson.”
Drs. Hudson and Carter have treated the most patients in the country at 30, between the telescope implant in clinical trials and post-FDA approval.
“It is great for Arizona patients that the device is covered here by Medicare and available,” said Dr. Carter. “It is gratifying to me as a surgeon that we can implant this little telescope in the eye to improve vision in a way that makes such a life-changing impact for my patients.”
The CentraSight treatment program focuses on comprehensive patient care. Prospective patients will undergo medical, visual, and functional evaluation to determine if they may be a good candidate. A unique aspect of the evaluation is the ability to simulate, prior to surgery, what a patient may expect to see once the telescope is implanted to determine if the possible improvement will meet the patient’s expectations. Post-implantation, the patient will learn how to use their new vision in everyday activities by working with a low-vision specialist.
To be considered a potential candidate for the telescope implant, patients must meet age, vision and cornea health requirements. The patient must have retinal and surgical evaluations to confirm the diagnosis of AMD and assess surgical candidacy. A low-vision optometrist and occupational therapist will work with patients before and after the procedure.
The telescope implant is not a cure for end-stage AMD. As with any medical intervention, potential risks and complications exist with the telescope implant. Possible side effects include decreased vision or vision-impairing corneal swelling. The CentraSight treatment program involves a patient management process and educational information for patients and providers.
Patients and physicians can find more information about the telescope implant and related treatment program at www.CentraSight.com or by calling 1-877-99SIGHT.
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