Macular degeneration is a group of illnesses that involves the loss of photoreceptors in the central area of the patient’s retina, resulting in blindness. However, several patients’ eyesight was recently restored with a bionic eye.
A bionic eye is a device with a microchip that has to be installed behind the retina. A special device that identifies visual digital signals and transmits them through the optic nerve to the brain is also implanted into the patient’s eye. The aforementioned systems are set in motion with a pair of smart glasses equipped with a camera.
When the camera records an image, it is converted into infrared signals which are sent by the microchip and implant through the optic nerve into the brain, where they are transformed into an image. This system was recently tested by French company Pixium Vision. Five patients volunteered to participate in this study.
The experiments were successful: all patients had their eyesight restored. They gained full spatial awareness and could identify objects and people, and also regained their ability to read. By the company’s evaluation, the bionic eye will be mass produced within the next five years. During this time, the technology will improve in both quality and price.
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