If the idea of reading without the need for reading glasses, bifocal or progressive glasses is something that gets you excited, the Raindrop corneal inlay may be for you. The Raindrop inlay restores every day vision so you can see text messages, a computer screen, the time on your wrist watch and the price on a price tag at the supermarket without the constant frustration of reading glasses or contact lenses. It provides a natural range of vision – from near to far – all without reading glasses. In addition, because it does not need to be updated or changed as you age it can help to provide clear near vision over time.
We are very excited about the ability to provide this advanced technology for our patients. As a center of excellence for several device manufacturers, Will Vision and Laser Centers is one of only a handful of centers in the United States selected by the manufacturer to implant this revolutionary optical advance.
How the Raindrop Inlay Works
Raindrop is the world’s first inlay to change the shape of the cornea (the clear, front part of the eye) to improve near vision and designed to reduce or eliminate the need for reading glasses. The outpatient procedure takes about 10-minutes and patients are able to resume most normal activities the next day.
Raindrop is incredibly small – about the size of a pinhead and less than half the thickness of a human hair – and is bioengineered to mimic the natural cornea. It is made of a soft, biocompatible material similar to a soft contact lens, composed of approximately 80 percent water.
Once implanted, it provides a full range of vision from near to far by markedly increasing the depth of focus for the eye. The brain combines the distance and near images together and provides a full range of vision. The Raindrop inlay can generally be implanted in any patient, including those that have previously undergoing a laser vision correction procedure.
Raindrop works by gently changing the shape of the cornea. The Raindrop inlay is placed in the cornea of the non-dominant eye. Once implanted, both eyes work together to create one image. With the Raindrop inlay, unlike monovision, there is little if any loss of distance vision in the implanted eye. As a result, the person can enjoy natural everyday vision with the ability to focus from near-to-far. In addition, the Raindrop inlay does not need to have its power adjusted with age.
How the Raindrop Corneal Inlay Works
The Raindrop inlay is implanted in only one eye. This allows the person to see up close, while maintaining excellent distance vision in both eyes. When working together, the eyes allow the person to see from near-to-far in a continuous manner. In comparison, monovision, which corrects one eye for near and one eye for distance does negatively affect the distance vision in the eye that is set for near.
Once implanted into the cornea, the Raindrop inlay blends in with the normal pupil coloration and does not create any negative cosmetic effect. In addition, the Raindrop inlay does not affect the ability to perform eye examinations or eye surgery should a patient develop cataracts later in life.
Here is a photograph of an actual eye with the Raindrop® inlay implanted. The inlay is found in the center of the pupil (dark part in the center of the iris). Even under high magnification the inlay is barely visible.
It is easily done as an outpatient procedure and takes about 10-minutes. Patients should be driven home after the procedure and should take it easy the rest of the day. Most patients return to normal activity the next day. Most people who have had the Raindrop implanted, see an improvement in their near vision by one week and it continues to improve for several weeks. Patients need to use eye drops for several months for comfort and healing.
In the FDA clinical study, within one week after the procedure patients on average gained 5 lines of near vision on an eye chart without the need for reading glasses. Their vision continued to improve over the next several weeks and months.
It is a tiny disc, about the size of a pinhead. It is comprised of approximately 80 percent water and is placed just beneath the surface of the eye. It works by gently changing the central curvature of the cornea, clear front part of the eye. Raindrop® is made of a soft, biocompatible material similar to a soft contact lens, which has similar properties and water content as the cornea.
Numbing drops are given for the procedure, but most patients do not experience any pain.
While Raindrop is implanted in one eye only, both eyes work together to create one image. The Raindrop eye provides an improvement in near vision associated with a slight decrease in distance vision. With both eyes working together there is not a compromise for distance vision and patients still have a significant improvement in near vision.
Extensive trials and usage show that it is safe. This was confirmed by the US FDA. Raindrop is bioengineered to facilitate the transport of nutrients and fluid to the eye.
Yes, the Raindrop can be removed and most patients go back to their vision before Raindrop.
Very well! Since Raindrop is transparent 99.7% of light passes through the inlay reaches the back of the eye where the image is processed. Raindrop offers patients good performance in all lighting conditions.
The company that developed manufactures, and markets Raindrop is ReVision Optics, Inc. based in Southern California. The company focuses on the research and development of custom optical solutions dedicated to presbyopic vision correction.
The Raindrop Near Vision Inlay has received approval by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, authorization to affix the CE Mark for the European Union, license approval by the Ministry of Food and Drug Safety (South Korea), approval by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (Australia), and registration with the Medicines and Medical Safety Authority (New Zealand). Other country-specific registrations are pending.