Obsolete Tech Could Leave Hundreds Blind
Hundreds of people who received high-tech, life-changing transplants could soon be left in the dark.
More than 350 blind individuals worldwide received artificial eyes from a company that’s abandoning them.
Second Sight Medical Products ran into financial trouble in early 2020 and ditched its retinal implant technology, struggling to avoid bankruptcy.
“As long as nothing goes wrong, I’m fine,” said Terry Byland, a double-implant recipient.
“But if something does go wrong with it, well, I’m screwed. Because there’s no way of getting it fixed.”
The news comes as entrepreneurs rush to cash in on new advances in brain technology, hoping to reverse depression, treat Alzheimer’s disease, or restore mobility.
But Second Sight’s sage shows that not all companies will succeed, and the risk for early adopters is that their high-tech implants turn into just another obsolete gadget.
“It is fantastic technology and a lousy company,” patient Ross Doerr says of Second Sight.
Second Sight has merged with an early-stage biopharmaceutical company, Nano Precision Medical, which is developing a new implant for drug delivery.