Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Ultra-small drainage device may replace eye drop medications for some glaucoma patients

Date:
November 13, 2012
Source:
American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO)
Summary:
A tiny medical device no larger than an eyelash may significantly reduce eye pressure in glaucoma patients and allow some to stop using eye-drop medications, according to year-one clinical trial results for the device. Results of the HYDRUS I clinical trial indicate successful control of eye pressure in all study participants.

How glaucoma restricts the visual field
Credit: American Academy of Ophthalmology

A tiny medical device no larger than an eyelash may significantly reduce eye pressure in glaucoma patients and allow some to stop using eye-drop medications, according to year-one clinical trial results for the device. Results of the HYDRUS I clinical trial, which indicate successful control of eye pressure in all study participants, will be presented November 13 at the 116th Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Ophthalmology, jointly conducted this year with the Asia-Pacific Academy of Ophthalmology.

The Hydrus stent is one of several promising mini-drainage devices now in clinical trials in the United States and other countries. If future trials confirm micro-stents' effectiveness, they could someday help protect millions of glaucoma patients from vision loss or blindness.

Open-angle glaucoma, the most common form of the disease, affects nearly three million people in the U.S and 60 million worldwide. (Click here to see how glaucoma can affect vision.) Though it is a multifactorial disease, currently the only proven way to prevent vision loss is by reducing intraocular pressure (IOP). The treatment choices are effective but less than ideal, as some patients may not use eye drop medications consistently enough to control their IOP, while others simply don't respond to the drugs. Surgical procedures to open blocked drainage channels or implant larger stents, which are used only for patients with advanced glaucoma, carry risks of infection, bleeding, deterioration of other parts of the eye, and vision loss.

In this particular study of 69 patients suffering from mild to moderate open-angle glaucoma, IOP was reduced to acceptable levels in 100 percent of participants after they received minimally invasive stent implant surgery. In 40 patients the stent was placed during cataract surgery, a procedure that also reduces IOP. Twenty-nine patients had the Hydrus stent placed without cataract surgery to assess whether the stent would be effective on its own. No significant complications occurred in either patient group. At the six-month follow up, 85 percent of combined surgery and 70 percent of stent-only patients no longer needed eye drop medications to control their IOP. Reductions in IOP were consistent among all patients and remained stable at the one year follow up.

"So far, mini-stents appear to have important advantages in that they allow us to treat open-angle glaucoma at earlier stages and with lower complication risk," said Thomas W. Samuelson, M.D., a glaucoma specialist with Minnesota Eye Consultants, who served as the HYDRUS I trial's medical monitor. "If the devices can effectively control IOP over many years, it would be a real breakthrough in combating this blinding disease."

Dr. Samuelson cited the experience of an 81- year-old retired neurosurgeon who had tried multiple glaucoma medications, then had a drainage procedure called a trabeculoplasty, but couldn't achieve safe IOP levels. In 2010, the Hydrus was implanted in his right eye during cataract surgery, followed by the same surgery in his left eye a year later. A follow-up exam two months ago, confirmed that his IOP levels remained acceptably low in both eyes, without the use of eye drops.

A number of similar mini-stents, including the MIDI Arrow, Aquecentesis, and Transcend are now in development or clinical trials. The iStent was recently approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for use in conjunction with cataract surgery. All of the stents work by providing a new drainage channel for the eye's aqueous fluid, circumventing the patient's own clogged or blocked channels. They vary in design, materials and implant site within the eye. Despite encouraging initial results, it will be several years before the long-term safety, efficacy and durability of this treatment approach can be fully confirmed.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO). Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO). "Ultra-small drainage device may replace eye drop medications for some glaucoma patients." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 13 November 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/11/121113091856.htm>.
American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO). (2012, November 13). Ultra-small drainage device may replace eye drop medications for some glaucoma patients. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 29, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/11/121113091856.htm
American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO). "Ultra-small drainage device may replace eye drop medications for some glaucoma patients." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/11/121113091856.htm (accessed July 29, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Deadly Ebola Virus Threatens West Africa

Deadly Ebola Virus Threatens West Africa

AP (July 28, 2014) West African nations and international health organizations are working to contain the largest Ebola outbreak in history. It's one of the deadliest diseases known to man, but the CDC says it's unlikely to spread in the U.S. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
$15B Deal on Vets' Health Care Reached

$15B Deal on Vets' Health Care Reached

AP (July 28, 2014) A bipartisan deal to improve veterans health care would authorize at least $15 billion in emergency spending to fix a veterans program scandalized by long patient wait times and falsified records. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Two Americans Contract Ebola in Liberia

Two Americans Contract Ebola in Liberia

Reuters - US Online Video (July 28, 2014) Two American aid workers in Liberia test positive for Ebola while working to combat the deadliest outbreak of the virus ever. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating

Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating

AP (July 28, 2014) Classes are being offered nationwide to encourage African Americans to learn about cooking fresh foods based on traditional African cuisine. The program is trying to combat obesity, heart disease and other ailments often linked to diet. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins