Kind Of Gives New Meaning To The Aptly-Named ‘Eye’ Teeth

sharon-kay-thornton-368x249Sharron Thornton, 68, and a life-long resident of Mississippi, has been blind for the last ten years of her life, a side effect of a disease known as Stevens-Johnson syndrome.

The ailment, which causes scar tissue to build up on the eye’s cornea, can lead to blindness.  While cornea replacement is a viable option for some individuals afflicted with this disease, Ms. Thornton’s case was not the case.

A new procedure developed in Italy has made its way to the states and offers a cure-all by implanting the patient’s tooth into their cheek.  This woman’s tooth was filed and sculpted to encase a small lens, which was then inserted into her cheek cavity in order for it to ‘set’.  After the two fused together, the tooth-lens was removed and surgically implanted into Thornton’s eye socket.

Where the electrodes or electronic devices are attached (her brain, I can surmise?), I am uncertain of, but it’s amazing science that a camera can be utilized to remedy blindness in this day and age.  According to a statement released from the University of Miami’s Bascom-Palmer Eye Institute referencing this procedure:

“A hole is made in the mucosa for the prosthetic lens, which protrudes slightly from the eye and enables light to re-enter the eye allowing the patient to see once again.”

Ms. Thornton states that she most looks forward to seeing her youngest grandchildren – for the first time ever.

Congrats to the vision-restored Sharron Thornton and mad props to researchers for implementing this long-developed procedure!



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5 thoughts on “Kind Of Gives New Meaning To The Aptly-Named ‘Eye’ Teeth

  1. No electrodes or electronic devices, no camera. The goal of the procedure is to supply a new, working lens at the front of the eye; the rest of her eye needs to still function in order for this to work. A tooth is used, as I understand, because a solid mount is needed for the new lens, and the body tissues must interact well with it; and a tooth from the same body will do the trick.

  2. Well now I know why all the other pictures I’ve seen of her have been taken while she’s wearing dark glasses. That image is going to be hard to shake. Amazing procedure though, it’s wonderful that she can see again.

  3. Yeah, the image is pretty shocking… it’s like a fungus is growing there.. ew.
    anyways, it’s good to know science is working like that! I’m just shocked, wondering how is it possible that someone would even THINK of putting a tooth in someone’s eye!

  4. I’m generally not a squeamish person at all, but that picture made me a little queasy.

    More power to her for being able to see, though.

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