Eye drops that could replace reading glasses for millions FDA approved

Millions of Americans who squint on their smartphones may soon have the option to ditch their reading glasses and opt for eye drops that provide sharper vision for up to 6 hours.

In October 2021, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) quietly approved VUITY eye drops to treat presbyopia, an age-related condition that causes progressively blurred vision when focusing on objects. loved ones, according to the biopharmaceutical company. AbbVie. On December 9, the drugmaker announcement that the treatment is now available by prescription at pharmacies across the United States.

VUITY is a one-of-a-kind eye drop that provides clear near vision in 15 minutes for up to 6 hours, without affecting distance vision. Its active ingredient, a medicine called pilocarpine, works by causing the pupil of the eye to narrow, which helps to see things up close.

Presbyopia occurs as people age because the lenses in our eyes become less flexible, making it harder to focus on things up close. Most people begin to notice this effect in their 40s and 50s, with near vision subtly deteriorating over the next several decades. With the drug finally approved by the FDA, pharmaceutical company AbbVie hopes the treatment could provide more options for the 128 million American adults affected by this incredibly common disease.

“Many Americans cope with presbyopia, which typically begins around age 40, by relying on reading glasses or resorting to workarounds like zooming in on their digital devices to see up close” , Dr. Selina McGee, an optometrist and member of the American Academy of Optometry, said in a declaration. “With VUITY now available, it’s a good time for those who suffer from age-related blurred near vision to see their eye doctor for an exam and discuss their options for managing this common condition.”

The FDA approval follows two randomized Phase 3 placebo-controlled trials testing whether VUITY safely improves myopia using a total of 750 participants with presbyopia between the ages of 40 and 55. Participants were required to use one drop of VUITY or a placebo once daily in each eye. By day 30, everyone who received the drug reported clearer short sight, while no serious adverse effects were observed.

“As I got older, my vision changed and it became almost impossible to see clearly up close unless I was wearing my readers. Realizing that I had to start using readers showed me how important it was to treat this condition,” said clinical trial participant Toni Wright.

“It was great to have the opportunity to participate in the clinical study of a potential new treatment option. I’m so excited [that] the investigational treatment, which has been identified as VUITY, is now approved and available as a treatment to manage age-related blurred near vision.”

Sarah C. Figueiredo