How does a permanent set of contact lenses to correct your eye sight sound? no more glasses or dry, itchy eyes due to contacts. Well this could be possible in the very near future with the invention of UK student Devesh Mistry idea to use an auto-focusing, liquid crystal material to corrects all kinds of defects in vision.
Mistry's initial work is aimed at helping people who suffer from presbyopia, a condition normally found in people over the age of 45. The condition causes the natural lens inside a persons eyeball to become very stiff which causes a loss of elasticity of the lens, this makes it harder to bring long-range images into focus.
Amazingly the lenses are made with liquid crystals which is the same material used in modern-day televisions and computer monitors. The liquid crystals allow the lens to focus themselves in response to the eye muscles which would initially have trouble doing so.
Mistry explained to the times that "Liquid crystals are a very under-rated phase of matter. Everybody's happy with solids, liquids and gases and the phases of matter, but liquid crystals lie between crystalline solids and liquids. They have an ordered structure like a crystal, but they can also flow like a liquid and respond to stimuli."
The operation will be an implant and will be very similar to the one already used to remove and replace cataracts. The liquid crystals will help a damaged eye to effectively repair itself. It is these qualities that makes this product so promising to the future. Mistry has stated that prototype lenses should be ready by the time he finishes his doctorate at the university of Leeds in 2018. This would allow surgeons to get to work with this new lens by 2025. The procedure is likely to be quick and carried out under local anaesthetic, making an incision into the cornea and with the use of ultrasound break down the old lens; the replacement could then be inserted.
Check out the video to have a look at some other ways in which we are starting to develop material lenses to improve vision. What is incredible about these new 'Bionic Lens' is the claim they have a better ability to focus that our natural lens.
YOU MAY ALSO BE INTERESTED IN