Global Insight

By Simon Wyatt

The summer seems to have come and gone in a flash, but I hope you all managed some time to relax and enjoy the sunshine.

Here at Contamac the summer has seen us complete our move to Shire Hill, which given the potential difficulties, went incredibly smoothly. Our new facility has allowed us to plan a more efficient production flow, and finally some much needed space to better resource our growing R&D. With the improved capacity and facilities, we have added four additional members to our R&D team. In addition to projects in contact lens materials, we are now also moving ahead with two new IOL material developments, a next generation hydrophobic, aimed at addressing the key “complaints” of glistening and larger incision size, and a hydrophilic material with some unique properties. Further information will follow as the projects progress.

The end of summer was quickly followed by a very busy and well attended ESCRS in the beautiful city of Barcelona. I was delighted to see many old friends, as well as meet new colleagues from our industry. The “holy grail” of a truly accommodating IOL seemed a regular topic of conversation, and over the past 6 months we have seen a number of interesting designs emerging. Whilst some of these may work in theory, the challenge of manufacturing often complex designs on a commercial basis, with the added challenge of combining different materials, will considerably test existing manufacturing skills. We shall wait and see.

Manufacturers do appear to be overcoming the historical challenge of making a hydrophobic IOL, and many now have such IOLs in their product portfolio. Our HI56 semi-finished hydrophobic material is now available in clear material with a power range of 10-30d, in 0.5d increments. Having the optic fully moulded removes the most difficult aspect of producing a hydrophobic IOL, machining a high quality optic on a consistent basis. The benefits of a moulded optic are high quality, reproducibility, and polish free, leaving the square edge exactly as it should be: square. Our material has a full set of biocompatibility documentation in addition to a Clinical Evaluation, saving the manufacturer time and considerable cost in obtaining the required approvals. A yellow version will be available in early 2016.


With more hydrophobic IOLs, there appears to be a greater demand for pre-loaded delivery systems. Over the past years, there has been much research and investment in this area, and I remain to be convinced the challenges have been completely overcome. Delivery systems are a crucial part of successful cataract surgery. Any surgeon will tell you the key requirements are safe and reliable delivery with no damage to the lens. And yet, with ever growing pressure on pricing globally, and injectors often “given away” with the IOL, there is a natural temptation to make savings on lower quality delivery systems. A dangerous precedent, since where injectors are provided with the lens the two may be judged together!

I am delighted to announce that Contamac has secured the exclusive global distribution rights to a new European manufactured delivery system, the ErgoTouch. As the name suggest, the ergonomic design provides comfortable use for the surgeon, giving a precise, controlled and safe delivery of the lens.

Injector and Cartridge

The ErgoTouch delivery system has a new feature to help support the surgeon as well as OR personnel:

  • Large finger contact for comfort of use.
  • Plunger with stopper for a safe stop/start.
  • The plunger is designed with advanced material for perfect alignment and robustness.
  • The injector body is made of crystal clear material, with large fenestration, on both sides, for improved visibility of the delivery process.
  • The injector body is designed for better handling, and for a “two hands” injection procedure.
  • Soft-touch texture for safe and comfortable handling
  • Anti-slippery texture for safety
  • Rounded cartridge corner to maintain safety

The delivery system is supplied in two versions, the ErgoTouch and the ErgoTouch Plus.

  • The ErgoTouch cartridge utilizes a gliding agent, GMS, with low surface migration and well controlled moulding condition to prevent significant transfer residue. Disposable cartridges are available in a range of incision sizes from 1.8mm to 2.6mm depending on the surgical technique used.
  • The ErgoTouch Plus cartridge utilizes a coating treatment technology which protects the IOL from damage during cataract surgery, with no additive transfer on the lens post-delivery. Disposable Plus cartridges are available in a range of incision sizes from 1.8mm to 2.6mm depending on the surgical technique used.

The ErgoTouch and ErgoTouch Plus are now available in “bulk”, and will have CE mark by mid-2016.

Please contact Sebastian at sebastian@contamac.co.uk for further information and samples.

My next trip is to China, where between customer visits, I hope to learn more about the recent changes to the registration requirements which are causing some alarm.

I then head to the AAO in Las Vegas where I hope to see many of you again.

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