It is one of the most irritating side effects of aging: blurred near vision or presbyopia. But a new therapy, eye drops that can improve near vision for hours on end, may help those who are tired of wearing reading glasses.
Freshly approved by the Food and Drug Administration, Vuity eye drops work in as little as 15 minutes, with effects lasting up to six hours, according to clinical trial data presented at the American annual meeting. Society of Cataract and Refractive. Surgery last summer.
“Vuity is the first and only FDA-approved prescription eye drop treatment for presbyopia – an age-related near vision disorder – in adults,” said Dr. George Waring, IV, surgeon. LASIK and cataracts and director of the Waring Vision Institute in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina. Waring was a principal investigator for the clinical trials that led to Vuity’s approval by the FDA.
Who are these eye drops for?
âAlmost half of the adult American population currently lives with presbyopia,â Waring said. “And most people over 40 struggle with age-related near vision loss.”
Clinical trials have shown the eye drops to be safe and well tolerated, Waring said, adding that no serious adverse events have occurred.
âThis is for all patients between the ages of 40 and 55 who have presbyopia,â said Dr. Ralph Chu, a Minnesota-based ophthalmologist. “So, difficulty seeing up close. It’s not just reading the vision, but it’s our daily activities. It’s eating the food on our plate. It’s putting on makeup in the morning. It’s seeing the your car’s dashboard. “
How do Vuity eye drops work?
Eye drops contain a drug that has been used for over a hundred years at a higher concentration to treat glaucoma, so it is a drug that doctors have a lot of experience in using. The low dose in Vuity eye drops works by temporarily reducing the size of the pupil.
Waring likens this to changing a camera’s diaphragm to reduce the size of the aperture allowing light to pass to film in older cameras. “It is an age-old optical principle which, by reducing the aperture, extends the range of focus,” he said. âSo it increases the ability to read up close while maintaining distance vision. “
Since the smaller pupil lets in less light, the drops are not recommended for use while driving at night, Waring said.
Clinical trials have shown that people’s near vision improves. In fact, compared to those who received placebo eye drops, 22.9% more of those treated with Vuity drops could read at least three more lines on an eye chart than before treatment.
NBC News correspondent Kristen Dahlgren has tired of eye drops TODAY. She said the drops burned a bit on entering and her eyes had turned red, but within 30 minutes her vision had improved dramatically.
âI haven’t been able to read letters this small in years without glasses,â Dahlgren said.
There are a number of products on the market that improve near vision, said Dr Tamiesha Frempong, ophthalmologist at the New York Eye and Ear Infirmary of Mount Sinai and assistant professor of ophthalmology and pediatrics at the medical school. Icahn from Mount Sinai. At New York.
“This narrows the pupil and widens the depth of field to see well at close distances without affecting distance vision or compromising peripheral vision,” said Frempong. “One thing we don’t know is whether there will be any long-term consequences.”
One advantage of the drops over other therapies, such as surgery, is that you can stop it whenever you want, Frempong said.
âI’m really excited about them,â she added. âI would like to try it myself and I would like my patients to try it. Presbyopia affects so many people and has a real impact on their ability to function and their quality of life.
A bottle of eye drops costs $ 80 and lasts about a month. They are only available on prescription and are not covered by health insurance.