Smart contact lenses, the newest in technology for our health -


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Thursday, 14 December 2017

Smart contact lenses, the newest in technology for our health

Smart contact lenses are a product of the evolution of biotechnology that is ushering in a new era of "consumer electronics" that will lead us to be permanently connected. Technology moves from our equipment to our bodies.

Google, Samsung and Sony, among others, are developing sensors and compact integrated circuits, biocompatible enough to be used in digital contact lenses

These devices could be used to capture photos and videos , increase reality, improve night vision, image stabilization and even in the diagnosis and treatment of diseases.

Eye movements, such as blinking, could also be used to interact with digital contact lenses. Sony already has a patent that describes a technology that can distinguish between voluntary and involuntary blinks.

The design of these new intelligent contact lenses presents many challenges. The first is the size since this type of device must be compact in diameter and thickness. Another challenge is batteries, since these are currently manufactured using chemical products are too large and are a risk to be used in future intelligent contact lenses. Researchers seek to couple short-term solutions that could involve capturing solar energy, converting tears into electricity or using a piezoelectric device that generates energy thanks to the movement of the eyes.

Although this technology is still in development, they are already beginning to appear in combination with compact screen glasses (HUD) developed by Innovega. Called 'eMacula' (formerly 'iOptik'), the prototype has been purchased by DARPA and combines digital contact lenses with a set of glasses that essentially serve as a projection screen. The contact lens has a special filter that allows the eye to concentrate on a projected image of the glasses and at the same time to see the surrounding environment. In addition to military applications, if the FDA approves it, Innovega says that its kit could be useful to watch games or movies in 3D.

On the other hand, the FDA has already approved Sensimed contact lenses that can measure eye pressure in patients with glaucoma, Google has filed contact lens patents , such as those that could track glucose levels, and UNIST researchers They are exploring the same subject. While the University of Wisconsin Madison is working on contact lenses with autofocus they could replace bifocal or trifocal glasses .

Technologies in this field will depend to a large extent on the availability of extremely compact and affordable biosensors. In addition to external lenses, the Canadian company Ocumetrics is conducting clinical trials with an injectable and upgradeable bionic autofocus digital contact lens that claims it could improve vision 20/30 times. Future improvements may include a slow drug delivery system, augmented reality with a projection system in the eye that can wirelessly access device screens, and human vision.

In its latest press release of June 2017, Ocumetrics states that clinical approval should be achieved in the next two years for Canada and the European Union, and two to three years for the US FDA. UU Speaking about the potential disadvantages of technology during its presentation at Superhuman Summit 2016, the founder of Ocumetrics, Dr. Webb Garth, stated that not having these new intelligent contact lenses could end up being the biggest disadvantage.

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