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IRIDEX Granted U.S. Patent for Stepped Angled Laser Handpieces Used in Eye Surgery
Date:5/2/2011

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif., May 2, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- IRIDEX Corporation (Nasdaq: IRIX) today announced that the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office had issued to IRIDEX a patent applying to a group of specially designed laser handpieces used in invasive ophthalmic surgical procedures. The patent, No. 7,909,816 and titled "Directional Probe Treatment Apparatus," applies to a number of consumable medical devices already in the IRIDEX product line collectively known as Stepped Angled EndoProbe® laser handpieces.

"This is an important patent for us because our Stepped Angled probes are the best selling product line within our consumable product portfolio," said IRIDEX President and CEO Theodore A. Boutacoff. "Users of these handpieces consistently comment on their performance, ease of use and their longer working distance compared to competitive probes. This patent helps us further differentiate our products from our competitors and creates new barriers for competition."

"Furthermore, we intend to expand our Stepped Angled EndoProbe product line by introducing additional versions," Boutacoff added. "This is another example of us executing on our ongoing goal of increasing the number of consumable devices we offer and to further grow our revenue in that high-margin category."

Stepped Angled EndoProbe handpieces are used in invasive ophthalmic surgical procedures. A portion of the outside diameter in these devices is both reduced in diameter and formed into an arc. The incorporation of both of these features in a single device gives ophthalmologists the clinical benefits of a curved laser probe while maintaining compatibility with the straight cannulas used with today's small-gauge vitrectomy instruments.

The patented Stepped Angled EndoProbe handpiece design offers some unique advantages over alternative angled probes. The handpieces are very durable and readily tolerate the rigors of invasive laser surgery, while simultaneously delivering laser energy that has less aberration with consistently lower divergence and higher irradiance. All of these characteristics contribute to their ease of use and a consistent clinical "feel." Stepped Angled EndoProbe handpieces come available in 20, 23 and 25 gauges.

About IRIDEX

IRIDEX Corporation was founded in 1989 and is a worldwide leader in developing, manufacturing, and marketing innovative and versatile laser-based medical systems and delivery devices. We provide solutions for multiple specialties, including ophthalmology, dermatology and otolaryngology. We maintain a deep commitment to the success of our customers, with comprehensive technical, clinical, and service support programs. IRIDEX is dedicated to a standard of excellence, offering superior technology for superior results. IRIDEX products are sold in the United States through a direct sales force and internationally through a combination of a direct sales force and a network of approximately 100 independent distributors into 107 countries. For further information, visit the Company's website at http://www.iridex.com.

Safe Harbor Statement

This announcement contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Act of 1934, as amended, relating to the Company's intent to expand its product line and to increase the Company's consumable devices business and the revenue relating thereto. These statements are not guarantees of future performance and actual results may differ materially from those described in these forward-looking statements as a result of a number of factors. Please see a detailed description of these and other risks contained in our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended January 1, 2011 which was filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Forward-looking statements contained in this announcement are made as of this date and will not be updated.


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SOURCE IRIDEX Corporation
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