An implantable eye lens for macular disease

Dr Giuliana Silvestri Royal Hospitals, Belfast - £154,706

A clinical trial into how well magnifying intraocular lens implants work for those with vision loss due to macular disease. If successful, this may pave the way for further use, including on the NHS.

What is the problem?

Magnifying intraocular lenses implanted into the eye are available to help those with macular disease see better. However, no trials have been done to prove how useful they are or who they are most suitable for. This work will run a clinical trial to understand how beneficial these lenses are for people with macular disease.

What are they doing?

Dr Silvestri and her team are recruiting 25 patients and fitting them with a magnifying lens. They will compare these patients to those without the lens, and those with a magnifying contact lens.

How can this help?

In order for treatments and aids to be available on the NHS, they need to be proven to work. This is the first clinical trial testing magnifying intraocular lenses in people with macular disease. It could help provide evidence to support further use, or larger trials.

These lenses are only available privately and we have heard stories where doctors have fitted them in people who would be unlikely to gain any benefit. Therefore, this trial could help set standards of when they should be used.

If you are considering having a magnifying lens fitted, please call our Advice and Information service on 0300 3030 111 who can advise you on what questions to ask your ophthalomologist.