Hope for glaucoma patients after first trial of an eye implant in human

Belgian company, iSTAR Medical, says it has promising results from the first-in-human trial of an eye implant. The implant can decrease fluid pressure in the eyes of patients with glaucoma.

The company has six-month results that show the effects of its device on intraocular pressure in patients with glaucoma. Glaucoma is a condition where high eye pressure damages the optic nerve and leads to gradual vision loss.

The device is called MINIject, and it is an implant made of a soft and flexible form of silicone. MINIject reduces eye pressure by clearing the fluid from the region that lies between the cornea and the iris.

During the trial, the device was implanted in 25 patients with mild to moderate glaucoma. The device reduced fluid pressure in the eyes by 39%. Nearly 88% of patients were able to stop using medication that lowers eye pressure.

There were no serious side-effects, says iSTAR. It plans to measure the implant's performance for up to two years after it is put in patients.

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