Navigation Links
Glaucoma surgery in the blink of an eye
Date:9/11/2007

TEL AVIV Prof. Ehud Assia, of Tel Aviv Universitys Sackler School of Medicine is, quite simply, a rock star in the field of eye surgery.

One of a small number of surgeons in the world who currently perform a complicated form of glaucoma surgery, Prof. Assia has developed a novel laser device that promises to revolutionize treatment of the disease. The laser, called the OTS134 for now, is expected to give most practicing eye surgeons the ability to master complex glaucoma surgery very quickly.

Glaucoma, nicknamed the silent sight thief, is the second leading cause of blindness in the West. Glaucoma is a serious problem that starts to cause nerve damage to people without them realizing that anything is happening to their eyesight, often before it is too late, says Prof. Assia, who is also the director of Ophthalmology at Meir Hospital in Israel, which treats thousands of glaucoma patients each year.

The most common surgical treatment in use today perforates the wall of the eye, often resulting in collapse of the eyeball, infection, cataract formation and other complications. A more effective and elegant approach, a specialty of Prof. Assia's, involves penetration of the eye wall to a depth of only about 95 percent, leaving a razor-thin layer intact. The difference between success and failure may amount to just a few microns.

This highly-specialized non-penetrating surgery, requiring years of rigorous training and great skill, is performed by only a small number of surgeons at leading international ophthalmology centers. But a small observation led Prof. Assia to think about a method that could make the procedure accessible to eye surgeons without the long and involved training.

Several years ago I served as a consultant for a company that produces CO2 lasers, which are used for different kinds of cosmetic and skin surgery. Because it is a relatively strong type of laser, it was not a likely candidate for use on something as delicate as the eye. However, one of the CO2 laser's unique characteristics is that it does not function when it comes in contact with liquid. It occurred to me that this would be a perfect fit for non-penetrating surgery, because the moment the CO2 laser came in contact with the intra-ocular liquid, it would automatically shut off, he recalls.

Working in partnership with the Israeli-based company IOPtima, Prof. Assia has already carried out a series of successful human trials. A larger worldwide study will take place this year before the company launches the OTS134 as it plans to do in the United States by the middle of 2008.

Glaucoma affects 3 million Americans every year, with onset around the age of 40. It is a disease that is brought on by a seemingly harmless increase of pressure in the eyeball. When this pressure builds up over time, the aging body cannot seem to correct the pressure effectively. Glaucoma eventually damages the optical nerve in the eye, with extreme tunnel vision and complete blindness ensuing.

There are drug treatments that can reduce the intra-ocular pressure, but that means life-long treatment involving two or three kinds of eye drops three times a day," says Prof. Assia. "We find that a large number of patients dont comply with this treatment, especially because the harmful effects of not taking the medicine properly are not immediately felt.

Although he counsels that surgical approaches to glaucoma also carry risks, the OTS134 is a promising tool for more widespread treatment with fewer complications.


'/>"/>

Contact: Barbara Schreibman
bschreibman@aftau.org
212-742-9080
American Friends of Tel Aviv University
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Glaucoma may be delayed by eye drops
2. Glaucoma & Ocular Hypertension more likely in patients with refractive errors
3. Progression of Glaucoma could be controlled with early detection
4. Tight necktie may raise glaucoma risk
5. Early Screening Required for Glaucoma
6. Adding An Additional Drug May Help Patients With Glaucoma
7. Heavy Computer Use May Result In Glaucoma
8. A Drop a day Can Keep Glaucoma At Bay
9. Millions Of Diabetic And Glaucoma Patients Risk Blindness
10. Glaucoma Could Cause Vision Loss In 60 Million People By 2010
11. Glaucoma Camp Held
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... 2017 , ... As health professionals work to improve their approach to healthcare, ... doing more than filling out a survey; in many cases health professionals and patients ... health care and research on the importance of active engagement with patients and members ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... October 13, 2017 , ... The ... to promote standards of excellence for the field of eating disorders, announces the ... – 25, 2018 in Orlando, Florida at the Omni Resort at ChampionsGate. ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... ... Lori R. Somekh, founder of the Law Office of Somekh & Associates ... special needs planning attorneys. “Membership in ElderCounsel helps our office remain up to date ... elder law attorneys nationwide,” said Somekh. , ElderCounsel was founded by ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... October 13, 2017 , ... The Visiting Nurse Association (VNA) of Somerset Hills ... specialty vendors and unique items from across the nation, this holiday-themed event will raise ... offered by the VNA. The boutique will be open Saturday, November 4 (10:00 ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... October 13, 2017 , ... Yisrayl Hawkins, Pastor and Overseer ... one of the most popular and least understood books in the Holy Scriptures, Revelation. ... descriptions that have baffled scholars for centuries. Many have tossed it off as mere ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:9/25/2017)... 25, 2017   Montrium , an industry ... today—from the IQPC Trial Master Files & Inspection ... that EastHORN Clinical Services has selected eTMF ... TMF management. EastHORN, a leading European contract research ... increase transparency to enable greater collaboration with sponsors, ...
(Date:9/19/2017)... , Sept. 19, 2017 HistoSonics, Inc., a venture-backed medical device company developing ... of targeted tissues, announced three leadership team developments today:   ... ... ... Veteran medical device executive Josh Stopek ...
(Date:9/12/2017)... and NEW YORK , Sept. 12, 2017 ... performance ratings for global supply chains, has published the first annual edition ... CSR performance of more than 20,400 companies evaluated by EcoVadis, based on ... 2015 and 2016. ... EcoVadis Global CSR Risk & Performance Index ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: