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Experimental Device Implant Capable of Restoring Visual Sense in Blind

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Published on : Sep 20, 2019

Research and development activities play a crucial role in the healthcare sector. It helps in discovering new ways and methods to treat diseases and assists in development of better therapeutics.  One of the most recent and significant development by researchers at UCLA Health is of an experimental device implant that helps in restoring visual perception in the blind. This device is for people who had clear vision, but lost it due to a disease or injury. However, this device does not offer normal sight, but it enhances users’ ability to move around in the surrounding by re-establishing their capacity to identify movement and differentiate between dark and light.

This is the very first incidence, when people can use a fully implantable device without any support of external device. Moreover, this device helps users to recognize places such as doorway, crosswalk, and start and end of sidewalk. A neurosurgeon at UCLA Health and chief investigator of the five-year study - Dr. Nader Pouratian, is happy about this development. He also mentioned that this device recognizes individual details that improve quality of life of blind people.

Study Shows Astounding Results after Orion Implanted in Six People

In total six people got the experimental device – Orion implanted in their brain. The first three were at UCLA Health, one at UCLA, and the rest two were at Baylor College of Medicine. All the recipients were glad that they could once again blow out candles and enjoy fireworks. The subjects who received this device were also capable of identifying people coming closer to them.

In addition, with the glasses, the device is equipped with a button, used by patients to amplify dark objects in the sun. And if they press again they can visualize light objects in the dark, for example, an oncoming car's headlights at night. Indeed this big achievement can benefit about 39 million people who are legally blind worldwide.