15th August 2018
Beijing ophthalmologist makes 3D printed spectacles to treat deformed corneas
By Umair Iftikhar
Dr. Song Hongxin, an ophthalmologist and researcher at the Beijing Tongren Hospital, China, has 3D printed spectacles to help patients with deformed corneas.
The 3D printed optical lenses are designed specifically to treat keratoconus, a progressive eye disease which deforms the cornea. The idea is that a 3D printed customized lens could fit the deformed cornea accurately and stabilize the sight of the patient.
The keratoconus-affected cornea loses its natural roundness and bulges out to form a cone-like shape. The light entering the eye to the retina is deflected which is the cause of distorted vision.
According to the Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB affects 1 in 2,000 people in Britain and is more common in South Asian people.
Dr. Hongxin explained that a blueprint of a patient’s cornea can be used to fully customize the 3D printed spectacles to fit corneas of different shapes. This will correct the distortion of the eye-sight. “Normal corneas have a smooth and convex surface, while their [keratoconus patients] corneas are bumpy with many irregular concaves,” Dr Hongxin told Beijing News.