Media Contact:
Katrina Norfleet
Posted: 5/11/2017
k3D-printed implant helps children born with small or missing eyes

Baltimore, Md. – A new, personalized and noninvasive treatment using 3-D printed implants has been developed to help children born with abnormally small or missing eyes (microphthalmia/ anophthalmia, or MICA). The research is being presented at the 2017 Annual Meeting of the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO) this week in Baltimore, Md.

The 3-D biocompatible implants, known as conformers, were well-tolerated and found to noninvasively stimulate eye socket expansion and eyelid opening growth. Without eye socket growth, further facial deformities can occur with age. While there is no treatment that will create a new, functioning eye, fitting with a prosthetic (artificial) eye for cosmetic purposes requires sufficient eye socket volume. The treatment resulted in eye cavity volumes that were on average 35% of reference eye volumes (corrected for age) whereas no treatment would have resulted in only 7.6%.

In the study cohort, four babies received the first in a series of eye orbit conformers, following MRIs and the creation of impression molds. A set of conformers of increasing size was given to the parents, who were taught to replace the conformer for a larger one as soon as it would fit into the eye socket.

Abstract title: Personalized 3D-printed conformers for the treatment of severe microphthalmia/ anophthalmia
Presentation start/end time: Thursday, May 11, 2017, 8:30 – 10:15am
Location: Exhibit/Poster Hall
Abstract number: 5138 - B0025

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The Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO) is the largest eye and vision research organization in the world. Members include nearly 12,000 eye and vision researchers from over 75 countries. ARVO advances research worldwide into understanding the visual system and preventing, treating and curing its disorders.

All abstracts accepted for presentation at the ARVO Annual Meeting represent previously unpublished data and conclusions. This research may be proprietary or may have been submitted for journal publication. Embargo policy: Journalists must seek approval from the presenter(s) before reporting data from paper or poster presentations. Press releases or stories on information presented at the ARVO Annual Meeting may not be released or published until the conclusion of the presentation.