The US Food and Drug Administration approved the very first intraocular lens with multifocus features that will be used for cataract treatment. The device will improve the vision just like a multifocal lens would, with a lower level of halo and glare.
The multifocal intraocular lens helps the patient to have a full range of vision. They can replace glasses and contact lenses. Their only default is the halo and the glare effect that made the patients complain.
The intraocular lens is abbreviated IOLs, and they are used in cataract treatment as implants that removal of the cloudy crystalline lens affected by the disease.
The new IOLs had been developed by Abbott Medical Optics. They improve visual acuity by extending the depth of focus. The advantage they have over the traditional lens is that far-distance vision is in a concurrence with the close-up vision.
The Tecnis Symfony lens provides continuous vision with the benefit of a single elongated focus that can help prevent night dysphotopsia. The later occurs in 20% of the people that had a cataract surgery. The phenomenon includes bright artifacts, halos or shadows that impair a clear vision.
“While IOLs have been the mainstay of cataract treatment for many years, we continue to see advances in the technology. The Tecnis Symfony Extended Range of Vision IOL provides a new option for patients that may result in better vision across a broader range of distances,” said Malvina Eydelman, MD, director of the FDA’s Center for Devices and Radiological Health.
The clinical trial that concluded with the approval of the IOLs involved 148 cataract patients with Tecnis Symfony implants and 151 patients with monofocal IOLs.
The results showed that, for intermediate distances, 77% of the Tecnis Symfony patients had a 20/25 vision, while only 35% in the control group had the same clarity of sight.
In near distance, the patients who got the new lens were capable of reading two extra small lines on a standard eye chart.
Regarding far distance, both groups had similar results.
However, the Tecnis Symfony IOLs could limit contrast sensitivity, in conditions such as fog or weak light. Other side effects include visual halos, starbursts, glare, or blurred vision. As it is the case with all implants, they may cause infections and bleeding.
The new lens had been approved in more than 50 countries. They have four toric models, all of them being designed to help residual astigmatisms and eye curvature imperfections.
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