We know that the medical gadget market is one of the fastest markets on the planet. They're not only the market with (arguably) the coolest gadgets out there, but the level of improvement they see year-over-year, or even month-over-month is literally staggering. It's going to be the medical field that gets us our first androids, for sure. And now, thanks to the FDA approving this telescopic eye, we can safely say that we're one (tiny) step closer.
VisionCare Opthalmic Technologies got the final word on their telescopic eye yesterday, officially having it approved by the FDA. It's specifically designed for individuals 75-years or older. Additionally, it's meant primarily for people who are suffering from end-stage macular degeneration. And yes, as you can see from the image, that's a real miniature telescope in there. It serves as a magnification unit, projecting the magnified image to healthy parts of the retina so the person can identify what the item is. While it would be great, and dangerously similar to Inspector Gadget, to have these installed in both eyes, right now it's only capable of being used in one, as the other eye needs to be used for the person's peripheral vision.
Reports suggest that in a case study of 200 individuals, 75% of them reported that they had improved sight while utilizing the telescopic eye. But, as you might expect, as great as it would be to get these implanted for everyone out there who needs it, medical gadgets aren't cheap. And the telescopic eye is no different. At $15,000, it won't be on everyone's list this Christmas season, unfortunately.
[via CBC News]