Fort Worth, Texas, Aug. 27, 2014 - Alcon, the global leader in eye care and the second largest division of Novartis Group, announced today that the company has entered into an agreement to acquire WaveTec® Vision, a privately-held company that developed the ORA System®, the first commercialized intra-operative guidance system for cataract surgeons implanting intra-ocular lenses (IOLs).
The ORA System, which complements Alcon’s Verion™ image-guided pre-operative diagnostic system, allows surgeons to see incisions and IOL alignment in real time to support optimal positioning of IOLs during cataract surgery. The ORA System performs additional measurements to confirm the surgeon’s lens selection and placement within the eye. Alcon plans to integrate the ORA System into its existing cataract refractive suite which includes: VERION™, the LenSx® femtosecond laser, the Centurion® phacoemulsification system, and the LuxOR™ LX3 microscope. The ORA System is currently the most advanced intra-operative diagnostic tool for cataract surgery available with over 200,000 procedures performed and 345 units placed to date globally.
“Alcon is continuously seeking new ways to address the needs of cataract patients, particularly those who live with astigmatism and presbyopia,” said Jeff George, Global Head of Alcon. “The ORA System provides intra-operative measurements which are not available with current pre-operative technologies and is designed to help surgeons improve patient outcomes through optimal IOL selection and placement during surgery.”
The ORA System obtains intra-operative wavefront data during cataract surgery to calculate IOL power, as well as magnitude and axis of astigmatism. The marriage of the ORA System and Alcon’s Verion imaged-guided system is intended to increase the surgeon’s clinical confidence when using IOLs, which include advanced technology intraocular lenses for the treatment of presbyopia, and astigmatism. Ultimately, the combined technologies are designed to improve patient outcomes and enhance the overall post-surgical patient experience with IOLs.
“The ORA System has proven that there is real value in technology that is both patient and provider-centered,” said Tom Frinzi, WaveTec President and CEO. “As a leader in eye care, Alcon is the right company offering the global reach and resources necessary to ensure this technology benefits patients and surgeons alike worldwide.”
Upon closing, Alcon will acquire full rights to the ORA System technology and immediately begin the integration of the company into its surgical business franchise. The transaction is subject to closing conditions, including anti-trust approval.
Cataracts are the leading cause of treatable blindness worldwide. They affect over 240 million people globally and are widespread among people 55 and older. As the global leader in cataract surgical equipment and medical devices, Alcon offers the industry’s most complete line of surgical products for cataract surgery, including equipment for cataract procedures, as well as IOLs to treat cataracts and correct refractive errors, like presbyopia and astigmatism.
About WaveTec Vision
A privately held company, WaveTec Vision is the leader in intraoperative wavefront guidance technology for cataract surgeons, providing on-demand information that increases the precision of cataract surgery so patients achieve their best possible vision. Based in Aliso Viejo, California, USA, WaveTec manufactures the proprietary ORA System that delivers optimal cataract surgery results for demanding patients and the skilled surgeons who serve them. For more information, visit www.wavetecvision.com.
Alcon, the global leader in eye care, provides innovative products that enhance quality of life by helping people worldwide see better. Alcon’s three businesses – Surgical, Pharmaceutical, and Vision Care – offer the widest spectrum of eye care products in the world. Alcon is the second largest division of the Novartis Group, with net sales of USD 10.5 billion in 2013. Headquartered in Fort Worth, Texas, USA, Alcon has more than 25,000 employees worldwide, operations in 75 countries and products available in 180 markets. For more information, visit www.alcon.com.