Professor Tova Lifshitz – Head of the Department of Ophthalmology, Soroka University Medical Center, Beer Sheva, Israel
Dr. Nadav Belfair – Head of the cataract surgery facility at the Soroka University Medical Center, Beer Sheva, Israel
Eli Besharim – Technician, Sheva Enaim Lanegev, a private multidisciplinary medical center in Beer Sheva, Israel
An expandable lens-capsule shielding device configured to provide shielding of the lens capsule during phacoemulsification and is easily retrieved following the procedure.
THE NEED In order to replace the affected lens its nucleus needs to be fragmented inside the eye in order to be easily removed. The most common technique of nucleus fragmentation is mechanical, where the nucleus is chopped into segments by using a hand held chopper and extracted from the eye with a phacoemulsification (Phaco) device. During phacoemulsification cataract surgery, the surgeon employs a Phaco device to further disintegrate the lens and apply suction to extract the lens fragments through the Phaco device. It is important to preserve enough distance between the Phaco tip and the posterior capsule of lens to prevent inadvertent suction to the capsule thereby rupturing it causing serious complications to the entire procedure. This complication can occur at any stage of the phacoemulsification; however, the final stages are particularly prone because of the need to further fragmentize remainder lens nucleus pieces through the application of ultrasound (US) energy. During the fragmentation of remainder lens nucleus pieces, there is no lens material present that could provide a natural shielding between the phaco tip and the posterior lens capsule while application of US energy to further fragmentize the nucleus pieces.