Information for the public
What has NICE said?
Short-term studies in small numbers of patients show that miniature lens system implantation for advanced age-related macular degeneration can improve central vision and is adequately safe. But there is not much good evidence about how well this procedure works or how safe it is in the long-term. It should only be used if extra care is taken to explain the risks and extra steps are put in place to record and review what happens.
NICE noted the importance of carefully assessing patients thinking about having the procedure, to predict how well they will cope with the changes in vision afterwards. It also noted the need for visual training and therapy after the procedure.
What does this mean for me?
Your health professional should fully explain what is involved in having this procedure, and discuss the possible benefits and risks with you. In particular, they should explain the uncertainty about the evidence on how likely it is to improve your symptoms and possible side effects including early complications. They should also explain that you will need to adapt to having a lens system implanted into 1 eye and the need for visual rehabilitation. You should be told how to find more information about the procedure. You should only be asked if you want this procedure after having this discussion. Your health professional should ask you if details of your procedure can be collected.
Other comments from NICE
NICE noted that comments from patients were mixed. Some patients reported good improvement in their vision. Others reported difficulty in coping with highly magnified images, and said that the improvement in their vision was not satisfactory.