Roger Pontz, a 55-year old former competitive weightlifter, is one of the first people in the United States to receive a ‘bionic eye’.
Pontz has a degenerative eye disease called retinitic pigmentosa, and he has not been able to see for years. Pontz is only one of four people in the whole country to receive the artifical eye since it was approved by the FDA in 2013. All of the four surgeries took place at the University of Michigan Kellogg Eye Center.
How Does the Argus II ‘Bionic Eye’ Work?
Science Daily breaks it down:
Argus II works by converting video images captured by a miniature camera, housed in the patient’s glasses, into a series of small electrical pulses that are transmitted wirelessly to an array of electrodes on the surface of the retina. These pulses are intended to stimulate the retina’s remaining cells resulting in the corresponding perception of patterns of light in the brain. Patients then learn to interpret these visual patterns thereby regaining some visual function.