The patent's inventors are Lin,
This patent was filed on
From the background information supplied by the inventors, news correspondents obtained the following quote: "In
"Thus, a continuing need exists for an implantable glaucoma drainage device which can regulate intraocular pressure.
"List of Cited References:
Supplementing the background information on this patent, NewsRx reporters also obtained the inventors' summary information for this patent: "In one aspect, present invention relates to a glaucoma drainage device and, in particular, to a bio-compatible glaucoma drainage system packaged into a needle-implantable capillary tube. The device comprises a microflow control system, a protective hollow carrier tube for housing the microflow control system, and one or more anchoring arms for retaining the device in a desired position within a patient's eye. The microflow control system comprises one or more pressure-sensitive valves. Each valve has a pressure threshold at which it changes from a first configuration to a second configuration, where one of the two configurations is an opened configuration and the other is a closed configuration. When in the open configuration fluid is allowed to pass through the valve, and when in the closed configuration fluid is not allowed to pass through the valve. The device further comprises a protective hollow carrier tube having two opened ends though which fluid can pass, where the microflow control system is attached with and fitted inside the protective carrier tube. One or more anchoring arms is attached with an exterior of the protective carrier tube, the anchoring arms configured to retain the device in a desired position within a patient's eye. Thus, changes in intraocular pressure beyond a prescribed pressure threshold will cause the one or more valves of the device to change configurations, thereby allowing or disallowing fluid drain from the patient's eye.
"In another aspect, the microflow control system comprises two valves connected with a coupling tube, where one valve is an opened normally-closed valve having a prescribed lower-limit threshold pressure and the other valve is a closed normally-opened valve having a prescribed upper-limit threshold pressure.
"In yet another aspect, at least one of the ends of the protective hollow carrier tube is slanted to facilitate insertion into a patient's tissue.
"In a further aspect, the present invention comprises a method for fabricating anchoring arms for a drainage device. First, photoresist is deposited onto a thermal oxide silicon substrate. Next, one or more notches is patterned into the photoresist. The pattern of notches is transferred onto the thermal oxide layer by an etching process. Then, semi-circular trenches are etched into the silicon wafer through the notches in the oxide layer. The oxide layer is then removed. A bio-compatible material is deposited across the substrate and semi-circular trenches as a structure layer. The structure layer is coated with an aluminum layer. Then, the structure layer is laminated with a dry film photoresist. Next, the dry film photoresist is patterned, leaving photoresist over the semi-circular trenches. Exposed portions of aluminum are etched off with aluminum etchant. Exposed portions of the structure layer are also etched to form separate structure layer regions. Any remaining aluminum is removed with aluminum etchant, and the separate structure layer regions are released as anchoring arms.
"As can be appreciated by one skilled in the art, the present invention also comprises an anchoring arm for a drainage device formed by the above method.
"In yet another aspect, the present invention comprises a method for testing a drainage device for relieving intraocular pressure, the device having a microflow control system, a protective hollow carrier tube, and one or more anchoring arms. The testing method comprises folding the one or more anchoring arms and inserting the drainage device at least partially into a testing tube. Then, the drainage device is sealed within the testing tube using photoresist or other sealant. The testing tube is connected to a fluid source controlled by a pressure regulator and monitored by a pressure gauge and flow meter. A testing fluid is run at various pressures through the testing tube and into the drainage device, whereby the drainage device can is tested for proper functioning at desired pressures."
For the URL and additional information on this patent, see: Lin,
Keywords for this news article include: Aluminum, Glaucoma, Treatment, Eye Diseases, Light Metals,
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