Local doctor participating in glaucoma prevention trial, hopes to make history

Local News

A local eye doctor is taking part in an FDA trial that aims to slow down the effects of glaucoma. 

Two of the three trial procedures done in the U.S. were done right here in Dayton. 

Dr. Patrick Spencer has been working in Dayton for decades and he’s personally seen his own family lose their eye sight because of glaucoma. 

Dr. Spencer owns iWorks Laser and Vision Center. 

“The patients say it feels like a contact lens,” said Dr. Spencer of how the patients feel about the FDA trial. 

Dr. Spencer says a small pump, developed by MicroOptx should release pressure that builds up behind the eyes of glaucoma patients. 

The trial surgery takes 5 minutes opposed to a standard 30 minute treatment.

“This little device inserts into the eye and there is a small channel. The fluid in the eye is externally shunted outside of the eye,” said Dr. Spencer. 

This device won’t cure glaucoma, but if caught at the right time, it could prevent blindness. 

Glaucoma is a silent disease and pressure behind the eye is often an early indicator. 

“That’s why you lose your peripheral vision. It (the pressure) works its way in, until it’s gone (vision),” said Dr. Spencer. 

Dr. Spencer says the 2 Miami Valley based  patients that have taken part in the FDA trial are either blind or partially blind. Again, they will not  be cured, but it will be easier to tell if the device relieves pain. 

He’s hoping this will propel the trial. 

“In Dayton we do a lot of innovation. Especially with eye disease, This device has been regulated to a point where damage will no longer happen,” said Dr. Spencer. 

2 NEWS reporter Ethan Fitzgerald plans to check in with the patients that have joined the trial. 

Dr. Spencer says it could take as long as 2 years for the device to be FDA approved. 

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