Navigation Links
New surgical implant tested at U-Iowa prevents total blindness
Date:2/18/2009

A work accident leaves a woman blind in one eye. As she copes with the loss, within months the vision in the other, previously uninjured eye begins to blur, and the eye becomes red and inflamed.

The rare eye condition, known as sympathetic ophthalmia, occurs when vision is lost in one eye through injury or multiple surgeries, and the body's overactive immune system attacks the remaining healthy eye. Left untreated, a person can become completely blind.

However, University of Iowa ophthalmologists and colleagues have tested and are now using a surgical implant called Retisert to prevent complete vision loss and eliminate dependence on systemic, or whole-body, immunosuppression. Before use of the surgical technique, doctors had to "shut down" a person's entire immune system to stop the attack on the remaining good eye.

"Until recently, the primary treatment option for sympathetic ophthalmia was non-surgical and involved high doses of oral steroids followed by oral immunosuppressive medication to preserve vision in a patient's remaining eye," said Vinit Mahajan, M.D., Ph.D., assistant professor of ophthalmology and visual sciences at the University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine and a retinal surgeon with University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics.

"But this treatment, similar to organ transplantation cases, subjects patients to life-long use of immunosuppressive drugs that have serious side effects such as osteoporosis, weight gain, potentially life-threatening infection and liver or kidney damage," he added.

The new Retisert treatment involves the surgical implantation into the endangered eye of a small plastic tab that contains a slow-release steroid called fluocinoloe acetonide. The insert provides immunosuppression only to the endangered eye, not other body parts. It lasts for about two-and-a-half years and then can be replaced.

Along with University of Iowa retinal surgeons James Folk, M.D., professor of ophthalmology, and Karen Gehrs, M.D., clinical associate professor of ophthalmology, Mahajan published a retrospective paper online in January in the journal Ophthalmology that documents the successful use of Retisert to treat eight patients with sympathetic ophthalmia.

The device previously was studied in approximately 300 individuals who had a different immune system inflammation of the eye. The UI-led sympathetic ophthalmia study found that with Retisert, the eight patients reduced or eliminated use of systemic medications to control inflammation. While two patients needed to resume using an oral immunosuppressive, vision improved or remained stable in all eight patients.

"Using Retisert, we are stabilizing vision in patients with sympathetic ophthalmia and getting them off the heavy-duty immunosuppressive medications," Mahajan said. "Patients had been willing to put up with the serious side effects of systemic immunosuppression because if they lost vision in their remaining good eye, it would be totally life-altering. With Retisert, we can save the eye, and the side effects are limited to treatable risks of high pressure or cataracts in the eye."

While each implant costs approximately $20,000, their use appears to be less expensive over the long-run compared to systemic immunosuppressive drugs and the required frequent hospital visits.

"If you add up the total number of patient visits, costs of lab tests and the costs of the immunosuppressive drugs, the $20,000 for the device is cheaper," Mahajan said.

Mahajan and colleagues are reaching out to retinal surgeons nationwide to make them aware of this new treatment option for patients with sympathetic ophthalmia.


'/>"/>

Contact: Becky Soglin
becky-soglin@uiowa.edu
319-335-6660
University of Iowa
Source:Eurekalert  

Related medicine news :

1. BLIS™ Announces Alliance with Surgical Review Corporation to Offer Surgical Complication Insurance Coverage for Bariatric Surgery Center of Excellence Designees
2. White patients benefit more than blacks in surviving surgical complications at teaching hospitals
3. White Patients Benefit More Than Blacks in Surviving Surgical Complications at Teaching Hospitals
4. Conjoined Twins Separated by Surgical Team at Childrens Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC During Complex, 24-Hour Procedure
5. DRE Veterinary Unveils Line of Surgical and Exam Tables
6. Navigation System Significantly Improves the Surgical Accuracy of Total Knee Replacement for Arthritis Patients
7. Womens cancer outcomes improved by surgical evaluation
8. Nationwide Medical/Surgical Unveils Flu Protection Tip Sheet
9. Surgical technique in Spain enables extirpation of benign tumors of the pancreas
10. Arizona Heart Institute Announces FREE Public Forum Featuring Live Viewing of Surgical Procedures Via High-Definition (HD) Satellite
11. Shands HealthCare Increases Operational Efficiency in Surgical Suites With Omnicell Supply Systems
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
New surgical implant tested at U-Iowa prevents total blindness
(Date:8/22/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... August 22, 2017 , ... “To Walk ... radioman on a B17 bomber named Edward Koontz. “To Walk Away” is the creation ... Scranton, who has published over two hundred manuscripts in chemistry and religion, as well ...
(Date:8/22/2017)... ... ... “Glimpses Of Light”: is a unique and thought inspiring guide toward self-discovery and ... author, J.M. Shepherd, a writer, teacher, traveler, and metaphysician, the author has spent most ... “Love is one of the least understood and yet most sought-after pleasures known to ...
(Date:8/22/2017)... ... August 22, 2017 , ... Although Labor Day is ... many communities have begun providing weekend displays, and numerous households celebrate the unofficial end ... can be downright terrifying for pets. , Kris Zambo, owner of Dynamite ...
(Date:8/21/2017)... Los Angeles, California (PRWEB) , ... August 21, ... ... Physicians is announcing the addition of two plastic surgery fellows for academic year ... is designed for candidates who have successfully completed residency in Plastic and Reconstructive ...
(Date:8/21/2017)... Milwaukee, WI (PRWEB) , ... August 21, 2017 ... ... recent years, with events taking place all over the country. , Outdoor running ... that marathon runners are at an increased risk of melanoma, and only half ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:8/1/2017)... --  CerSci Therapeutics , a non-opioid drug development firm ... received notice from the National Institute on Drug Abuse ... it has been awarded a Direct-to-Phase II Small Business ... with an additional $1,000,000 to follow in 2018. These ... their lead non-opioid drug candidate CT-044 to the Food ...
(Date:7/31/2017)... -- 7D Surgical, developer of ground breaking surgical navigation technologies, ... System to support its strategic sales plan in ... Virginia.  7D Surgical has entered into an exclusive sales representative ... facilities within those markets. ... Spartan Medical Purchases 7D ...
(Date:7/27/2017)... July 27, 2017  Zimmer Biomet Holdings, Inc. (NYSE ... ended June 30, 2017.  The Company reported second quarter ... over the prior year period, and an increase of ... basis points of contribution from the LDR Holding Corporation ... second quarter of 2016, or 0.3% on a constant ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: