The Argus II is a prosthesis that stimulate retina when the light-sensing cells are no longer work. The camera reacts to light and sends a signal to the array which is surgically implanted on the retina.
Retinitis pigmentosa is an inherited, degenerative eye disease that causes severe vision impairment due to the progressive degeneration of the rod photoreceptor cells in the retina. Affected individuals may experience poor vision, defective light-dark adaptations, night blindness. The progressive rod degeneration is later followed by deterioration in the retinal pigment epithelium and cone photoreceptor cells. As peripheral vision becomes increasingly compromised, patients experience progressive "tunnel vision" and eventual blindness.
Argus II prosthesis
The Argus retinal prosthesis became the first approved treatment for the disease in February 2011. The device may help adults with RP who have lost the ability to perceive shapes and movement to be more mobile and to perform day-to-day activities.
The system works from the camera on the glasses to captures a scene then the signal is sent wirelessly to the receiver in the implant. The signals are then sent to the electrode array, which stimulates the retina optic nerve brain, resulting in the perception of light.
The surgery aims to implant the Argus II retinal prosthesis in and around the eyeball. The implant consists of four parts: (1) the electronics case (2) the implant coil, (3) electrode array, and (4) the scleral band. The implant is made of metal, plastic and silicone. The case, coil, and scleral band are fixated around the eyeball. Then the electrode array is surgically implanted into the eye and tacked on the retina.(Figure 1)
The probable but uncommon complications and risks are as following:
- Retinal tear or detachment
- Conjunctival erosion
- Dislodged tack
The procedure cost is about 2,000,000 NTD, prices are subject to change without prior notice, need to pay in accordance with the actual medical expenses.