JUN 18, 2014
Researchers at the University of Washington have developed a sensor that could one day be embedded into a capsular tension ring to detect IOP changes instantly, and transmit the data wirelessly using radio frequency waves.
The researchers’ results were recently published in the Journal of Micromechanics and Microengineering. Patents have been filed on the initial prototype of the device, which is intended to be permanently implanted during cataract surgery. The sensor includes an antenna, a radio frequency chip and a pressure sensor assembled on a printed circuit board with several circuit components used for testing and calibration. The monitoring device is powered at 2.716 GHz from a distance of 1 to 2 cm.
The researchers say the chip’s processing mechanism is actually very simple, leaving the computational heavy lifting to the nearby receiver, which could be a handheld device or possibly built into a smartphone.
The current prototype is larger than it would need to be to fit into an artificial lens, but the research team is confident it can be downscaled through more engineering. The team has successfully tested the sensing device embedded in the same flexible silicon material that’s used to create artificial lenses in cataract surgeries.