Scientists have reportedly developed a therapeutic contact lens to expedite the treatment of certain severe corneal wounds.

For years, scientists have been developing different techniques to boost corneal injury treatments. The cornea is a highly sensitive and important part of the eye. Treating it often results in complications with poor chances of recovery. However, a team of researchers has allegedly created a therapeutic contact lens that could boost corneal wound treatments.

Researchers from the Queensland University of Technology’s Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation and the Queensland Eye Institute have developed a bandage eye-contact with a range of “wound-healing factors.” The Australian scientists reportedly used cells with unique wound-healing properties to create the contact lens.

“These cells, known as limbal mesenchymal stromal cells (L-MSC), would be isolated from donor eye tissue and subsequently attached to the inner surface of a special type of contact lens known as a scleral lens,” Damien Harkin, a professor from the QUT, said in a statement.

Contact Lens with Healing Factors

According to Harkin, the donor cells are “readily accessible from tissue that is usually discarded after routine corneal transplants”. The team’s data revealed that the donor cells discharge a range of wound-healing factors. These factors can reportedly boost a damaged eye surface’s repair.

“Our therapy could provide welcome relief for patients suffering from chronic conditions such as corneal ulcers and persistent surface defects that have not responded to conventional therapies,” Harkin added.

Patients with corneal damage could reportedly receive the therapeutic contact lens within hours of visiting an eye clinic. In general, the lenses will provide relief to people with chronic eye injuries like corneal ulcers. However, the contact lens could also be useful as a first-line treatment of acute eye injuries.

“The new treatment could also become useful as a part of the first-line therapy in the management of acute eye injuries experienced in the workplace or at home arising from exposure to caustic chemicals, scalding liquids or excessive heat,” Harkin went on to say.

Harkin also said that the new eye treatment could be accessible to patients within the next few years. This is dependent on the treatment also passing rigorous clinical trials.

Do you believe that therapeutic contact lenses could one day eliminate the need for eye surgeries?

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