FDA clears first implantable telescope for vision

July 8, 2010 | Source: AP

The FDA has approved an implantable miniature telescope to help in the end stages of incurable age-related macular degeneration.

The idea: surgically insert the Implantable Miniature Telescope into one eye for better central vision, while leaving the other eye alone to provide peripheral vision.

In a 219-patient study, the FDA said 90 percent of telescope recipients had their vision improve by at least two lines on an eye chart, and three-quarters went from severe to moderate vision impairment.

The CentraSight device, from VisionCare, of Saratoga, Calif., costs $15,000.