Tired of glasses? New lens technologies might offer a better way to see and experience the world.
Anyone who relies on corrective eyewear has experienced its drawbacks. Maybe you are approaching your 50’s and need glasses to see up close. Maybe you left your reading glasses at home and find yourself asking for help deciphering the lunch menu.
Maybe it’s impossible to wear glasses while pursuing your favourite hobby, like scuba diving or sailing. Wearing glasses can also be unsafe for those in some occupations, like firefighting. Contact lenses aren’t without their limitations, either, as they can get lost, be uncomfortable or put you at a higher risk for eye infection.
While options currently exist to treat vision disorders — including presbyopia, which is the age-related loss of near vision — they don’t offer individuals an optimal experience.
What eye care technologies are available for patients today?
The most common eye care technologies used by individuals with presbyopia today are glasses and contact lenses. But according to Dr. Doyle Stulting, Ocumetics’ Chief Medical Officer, these methods of correcting presbyopia have limitations, particularly if corrective lenses are also needed to see objects that are far away.
“If you need glasses to see at a distance, then you will need a different prescription to see up close as you grow older. This is done by prescribing bifocals or progressive lenses that contain your distance prescription at the top of the lens and your near prescription at the bottom of the lens. There are bifocal contact lenses as well,” says Dr. Stulting.
Dr. Stulting adds, “Patients with certain occupations need specially made lenses when they become unable to see at near distance. For example, mechanics standing beneath a car to work overhead need correction for seeing up close at the top of their glasses, in addition to the bottom of them. In some professions, glasses can be a safety risk.”
Glasses are also uncomfortable and inconvenient; individuals with presbyopia must always remember to have their glasses with them to see up close.
Dr. Garth Webb, Ocumetics’ Founder and Chief Scientific Officer, adds that laser eye surgery is another eye care technology, but it comes with its own limitations.
“Laser eye surgery is a useful tool for people who are young because their natural lens still has some flexibility. With laser eye surgery, the front surface of the eye can be reshaped to compensate for any mismatch of the eye’s optical system and produce clear distance vision,” says Dr. Webb.
How could new technology correct presbyopia?
Simply put, eye care technologies currently available to help correct presbyopia often don’t offer an optimal patient experience. A better solution is needed to elevate how people with presbyopia see and experience the world.
“There has been a dream in ophthalmology to be able to replicate the function of the natural lens of the eye, which we know is doomed to failure with age,” says Dr. Webb. “For 40 years, the ability to make that lens operate like it’s brand new has been called the Holy Grail of refractive surgery.”
In other words, replacing a stiff, presbyopic lens with one that is flexible and able to increase its curvature and power — referred to as an accommodating lens in the eye care world — would offer a significantly better patient experience without the limitations of glasses, contact lenses and laser eye surgery.
Correcting presbyopia could be “real simple,” affirms Dr. Stulting. “When you become presbyopic, you get an accommodating lens, and it goes away. That’s it.”
Are accommodating lenses available?
Accommodating lenses aren’t available quite yet. Ocumetics is developing an accommodating intraocular lens that will soon be moving into clinical trials. Ocumetics believes that its innovative lens technology could minimize the need for corrective eyewear by helping people see clearly at all distances.
For more information on the Ocumetics Accommodating Lens technologies and the Ocumetics team, visit ocumetics.com. For more information on investing in Ocumetics, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.