UK man becomes first person to have central vision restored through bionic eye

By midian182
Jul 23, 2015
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  1. A British man has become the first person in the world to receive a bionic eye implant for dry age-related macular degeneration (AMD), the most common cause of vision loss in adults.

    Ray Flynn has experienced deteriorating central vision since he developed AMD eight years ago, a condition that affects between 20 million and 25 million people worldwide. His vision problems became so severe, the retired engineer could only see clearly out of the corners of his eyes.

    In June, Flynn was given a ground-breaking operation, leaving him with an electrical implant which sends a video feed to the undamaged cells in his retina from a small camera attached to his glasses. The system was turned on for the first time on July 1, and tests showed that he could make out the outline of people and objects even with his eyes closed.

    The Argus II implant, manufactured by the US firm Second Sight, has already been successfully used worldwide on more than 130 patients with the rare eye disease retinitis pigmentosa. However those patients, unlike Flynn, had no peripheral vision.

    “I can now actually see the face of my brother,” said Flynn, “And watching Manchester United on the television is easier. I have central vision now which I haven’t had for eight years. Your eyes are the most precious thing. My brain is still trying to catch up and work out what is going on, but I have been told it will continue to get better.”

    Four more patients with dry AMD will undergo the $234,000 procedure at Manchester Royal Eye Hospital as part of a clinical trial. Consultant ophthalmologist and vitreo-retinal surgeon, Professor Paulo Stanga, hailed the operation as a success, he said: "Mr Flynn's progress is truly remarkable. He is seeing the outline of people and objects very effectively.”

    For more on the use of the Argus II System on dry AMD sufferers, see the video below.

    Image credit: Second Sight

    Permalink to story.


    IAMTHESTIG TS Evangelist Posts: 905   +239

    That is awesome... one of the many steps to being able to repair loss of vision for people. I hope by the time in that gentlemens age I'll be able to have a bionic eye with clarity nearly as good as a healthy 20/20 human eye, but with optical zoom. This technology could one day enhance our daily lives or give "super vision" to our military soldiers.
  3. Lionvibez

    Lionvibez TS Evangelist Posts: 1,080   +330

    This is the kind of stories I like seeing coming out of the UK!!

    Will be great when this gets cheaper but that will come in time.
  4. amstech

    amstech TechSpot Enthusiast Posts: 1,436   +592

    Great article, thank you for sharing.
  5. VitalyT

    VitalyT Russ-Puss Posts: 3,107   +1,376

    Must feel great being the first cyborg / eyeborg, and all :)

    Reminds me of a good old classic:

    Well, perhaps not as old and classic, but for the fact that both Andreas Katsulas and Richard Biggs and now dead, along with 5 others, may they all rest in peace.
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2015
    deemon likes this.
  6. Bobs Yer Uncle

    Bobs Yer Uncle TS Rookie

    This is most remarkable. The only negative I can see resulting from this is that movie theater chains will likely kick him out & call the cops whenever he attempts to take in a movie. And of course the MPAA will, without ANY doubt, will RELENTLESSLY prosecute him for piracy.

    Because beyond piracy there is clearly NO reason that anyone would want to have this surgical procedure. Just since July 1st the MPAA estimates that Flynn is single-handedly responsible for some $1.5 billion in lost movie industry revenues, which in-turn has resulted in some 675,000 job losses.

    Sure, Ray Flynn SEEMS to be a sympathetic & endearing character, but the MPAA has pierced this facade & knows the true nature of Flynn's dark heart!
    Tanstar likes this.
  7. Emexrulsier

    Emexrulsier TS Guru Posts: 503   +42

    You beat me to it, was just thinking about cinemas and google glasses before reading your post :D
  8. wiyosaya

    wiyosaya TS Maniac Posts: 932   +238

    Hmmm...the sarcasm seems overly ripe today...
  9. wiyosaya

    wiyosaya TS Maniac Posts: 932   +238

    JMS says we may be getting more in the next year or two, sans, of course, all those who have gone beyond the rim...
    VitalyT likes this.

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