Argus retinal prosthesis, also known as a bionic eye, is an electronic retinal implant manufactured by the American company Second Sight Medical Products. It is used as a visual prosthesis to improve the vision of people with severe cases of retinitis pigmentosa. The Argus II version of the system was approved for marketing in the European Union in March 2011, and it received approval in the US in February 2013 under a humanitarian device exemption. The Argus II system costs about US$150,000, excluding the cost of the implantation surgery and training to learn to use the device. The Argus II is specifically designed to treat people with retinitis pigmentosa. The device was approved with data from a single-arm clinical trial that enrolled thirty people with severe retinitis pigmentosa; the longest follow-up on a trial subject was 38.3 months. People in the trial received the implant in only one eye and tests were conducted with the device switched on, or switched off as a control. With the device switched on, about 23% of the subjects had improvements in their ability to see; all had been at 2.9 or higher on the LogMAR scale and improvements ranged from just under 2.9 to 1.6 LogMAR – the equivalent of 20/1262 reading ability.:18 96% of the subjects were better able to identify a white square on a black computer screen; 57% were more able to determine the direction in which a white bar moved across a black computer screen. With the device switched on, about 60% were able to accurately walk to a door that was 20 feet away, as opposed to only 5% with the device switched off; 93% had no change in their perception of light.:18 Among the thirty subjects in the clinical trial, there were nine serious adverse events recorded, including lower than normal intraocular pressure, erosion of the conjunctiva, reopening of the surgical wound, inflammation inside the eye, and retinal detachments.:19 There is also a risk of bacterial infection from the implanted cables that connect the implant to the signal processor.
Highest paying job titles at Second Sight Medical Products, Inc include ASIC Design Engineer, Director of Manufacturing, and Embedded Software/Firmware Engineer