Review of 2006, Stars of 2007

December 1, 2006

Its almost time to close the door on 2006 and welcome another new year. But, before we do that we wanted to take you on a journey through the highs and lows of the past twelve months by reflecting on some of the most significant events to shape your industry this year.

It's almost time to close the door on 2006 and welcome another new year. But, before we do that we wanted to take you on a journey through the highs and lows of the past twelve months by reflecting on some of the most significant events to shape your industry this year.

On the subject of new therapies, this year also saw the approval of several new and exciting intraocular pressure (IOP) lowering drugs for glaucoma patients. It seems that researchers have now recognised the benefits of combining therapies with different mechanisms of action to bring about a more powerful effect than one therapy alone. Predicted to supersede unfixed combinations of drugs when dual therapy is necessary in glaucoma patients, the new fixed combinations have been reported to induce less side effects whilst being more convenient for the patient, hence aiding patient compliance. Here, we speak with Dr Thierry Zeyen of University Hospital Leuven in Belgium about what he thought were the highlights of 2006 and how he anticipates the glaucoma industry will shape up next year.

Meanwhile, this year has seen many reports on the benefits of refractive lens exchange in certain patient populations, particularly the mixing and matching of multifocal lenses to bring about clear vision. Whether this modality of treatment will be accepted in 2007, remains to be seen, but it certainly has caused a stir over the past 12 months.

In cataract surgery, the trend towards smaller incisions and the instruments that will aid microincision cataract surgery continued to make a splash. It is now accepted that small incision surgery will be the future of cataract surgery practice, with IOLs that can be implanted through these small incision looking likely to dominate the future IOL market.

In the pages that follow, we review some of the major events of 2006 and provide some insight into what you might expect in 2007. We also spotlight some of the products that made their way into your practice this year. Although by no means a fully comprehensive list, we aim to offer you a taste of what is currently out there and what you can expect to see materializing in your own practice during what promises to be an exciting new year.

We would like to say a very special thank you to our guest contributors: Dr Albert Augustin, Dr Thierry Zeyen and Dr Erik Mertens.