STENTS IN THE EYE, PART 2
… The stents iStent and Cypass – it’s like comparing the Blackberry to an iPhone.
And this “iPhone” is covered by insurance, as well, at the time of the removal of cataracts?
I don’t know exactly, but it seems to me yes.
So you have become a master of this new innovation?
Readers should not get the impression that Benjamin Eye is reaching for every novelty treatment that comes by and rushing head-on into traffic. I’m pretty conservative. It often happens that this or that new thing is presented as being perfect, but it doesn’t take long to figure out that’s far from the case. We never blindly introduce new, innovative products and only accept new methods that have been approved. And in order to find out if something like this is as good as it’s advertised, you sometimes wait a year-and-a-half.
How does it all work? There’s a new and well-proven method, similar to Cypass for example. Do you need a license?
The company will approve surgeons based on their experience with stents and general expertise. A representative of the company comes to see how you operate, what kind of instruments you have, and what results are like. And if they see that this doctor can be entrusted with this new technology – considering their reputation, as well – they will teach you how to use it, starting with a series of operations on hogs’ eyes. Then you operate on patients under supervision. If everything goes well, you get a license. Patients are told right off-the-bat, “This is the first, fifth, tenth time, etc. that this doctor has performed the operation”. Here, that period of time has long since passed and the procedure is in full-swing.
If I understand correctly, a representative of the company is actually present during the initial operations?
Yes, that’s the standard. A clinical instructor comes who has a lot of experience with different doctors implementing this technology. Companies like Alcon choose reliable surgeons; they don’t go to just anyone. Life goes on, and in ten years it’s already being taught in residencies, and this former innovation becomes a regular medical procedure. But our patients, fortunately, do not have to wait this long.