Retinal Technologies for the Body’s Smallest Workspace

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Retinal surgery is the ultimate microsurgery, requiring surgeons to manipulate tiny, fragile tissues in a small space. Companies with advanced technologies in robotics and imaging could improve care by enabling earlier diagnoses of retinal conditions and safer, more predictive procedures. We speak with AcuSurgical and EarlySight.

It’s time to take a fresh look at the market for retinal disease therapies and technologies in the context of global health. While today considered a small niche of ophthalmology, where retinal specialists represent only a third of all ophthalmic clinicians with a global surgical procedure volume of just 1.6 million (not counting intravitreal injections), it is a vastly underpenetrated market given the number of people who suffer from sight-threatening diseases of the retina.

Retinal diseases are for the most part, related to aging, and if allowed to progress, lead to severe vision impairment and blindness. According to the World Health Organization, 1 billion people in the world have blindness, or moderate to severe near or distance vision impairment, that has yet to be addressed or could be prevented. In that number are 8 million people with age-related macular degeneration (AMD), 7.7. million with glaucoma, and 3.9 million with diabetic retinopathy.


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