Monday, December 04, 2017

Cancer and cataracts

I saw this Ted talk recently where this guy was talking about taking white blood cells out, re-engineering them to kill cancer cells, then injecting them back in. They managed to completely cure a little girl of leukemia.

I googled around and found that this treatment is FDA approved, but only for treating leukemia. The reason is that it can't kill tumors. When it attacks the cells on the outside of the tumor and they all die, it creates a wall that the white cells can't get through, so they can't kill the rest of the tumor.

I also read that once you've had some of your white blood cells engineered and re-injected, it's for life. All of your white blood cells will forever be able to fight cancer. It seems to me that if that's true, then this technology ought to be able to be used as an inoculation against cancer. It may not be able to destroy a tumor, but it ought to be able to prevent a tumor from ever forming. I'll have to do more googling around about that. If this were FDA approved for inoculation against cancer, I'd be first in line!

In other news, I'm starting to get old man eyes, which makes it harder to focus on things close up. From what I read that happens to pretty much everybody because the lens in your eye hardens so that it can't change shape as easily. The solution is reading glasses, bi-focals, or interocular lens (IOL) implants. Lens implants are usually for people with cataracts, though.

I started reading around about lens implants and watching YouTube videos. Most implants will only allow you to focus on one distance, but now they have multi-focal lenses that allow you to see clearly both close up and far away. Insurance usually doesn't cover those, though.

There are all kinds of multi-focal lenses now. The coolest one I've seen anywhere is called FluidVision 20/20. It's a liquid IOL that works pretty much like your natural lens. Well, it does the same thing, but not exactly in the same way. Anyway, it supposedly allows you to see 20/20 at every distance. Check this out.

I seriously want that! It's not FDA approved yet, much less will insurance pay for it. I would gladly volunteer for a clinical trial, though. I've been wearing glasses since I was 20, and I've never gotten used to them. I only wear them when I drive. I hate hate hate wearing glasses! Wouldn't it be awesome to have 20/20 vision even when you're old without glasses or contacts? I can't even wear contacts. I tried two or three years ago, but neither I nor the doctors could get them in. I would pay oodles and doodles for FluidVision if I could.

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