New Presbyopia Treatments May Hit U.S. Market Shortly

Chicago, Illinois – Last month, the joint meeting of the American Academy of Ophthalmology and Middle East Africa Council of Ophthalmology convened in Chicago. One of the items discussed was several important presbyopia treatments currently in use across Europe which may be close to receiving approval in the United States as well. Clinical trial data presented at the meeting indicate that these treatments have been yielding successful results while maintaining patient safety.

Ophthalmologists at the University Hospital of Crete in Greece reported considerable success using a new type of corneal lens implant called the Flexivue. It has been implanted in the corneas of 15 patients suffering from presbyopia. One year after lens implantation, every patient exhibited stable vision in both eyes. Doctors acknowledged that patient selection was an important factor in determining the success of the procedure.

Ophthalmologists at Durrie Vision in Overland Park, Kansas have been conducting clinical trials for corneal inlays for the past three years. During that time, 153 patients received the corneal inlay, either with a 5- or 10-micron-thick AcuFocus lens. The 5-micron group demonstrated near vision at levels of 20/20, while the 10-micron group experienced near vision at levels of 20/25. Distance vision remained strong in the eye receiving the implanted lens.

A study conducted by ophthalmologists at the University of Heidelberg in Germany presented data demonstrating the success of a corneal reshaping procedure. The two-year-follow-up data on this INTRACOR presbyopia treatment indicated that the 25 patients involved in the study experienced significant improvement of their near vision, eliminating the need for corrective lenses. Distance vision was preserved as well. Vision improvements remained stable throughout the follow-up period.

Doctors are hoping that these treatments will clear FDA hurdles shortly so that American presbyopia patients can benefit from them as well.