Retina Clinical Research

Retina clinical research trials patient getting prepped for surgery.

Advancing the Science of Ophthalmology

From day one, Sabates Eye Centers has been equally committed to helping patients see their best and advancing the science of ophthalmology. The goals go hand in hand. It’s why we perform Retina Clinical Trials at our Leawood headquarters. It's why we established the Vision Research Center, Vision Research Foundation, and the Department of Ophthalmology at UMKC’s School of Medicine. Over the years, we’ve made Kansas City a center for eye research. A big part of that is our participation in clinical research trials.

The Sabates Eye Centers Approach to Retina Clinical Research

All sorts of clinical research trials are available to practicing ophthalmologists and the patients in their care. At Sabates Eye Centers, we choose to participate only in those with the potential to address the most pressing and urgent eye care needs.  

 

Current Clinical Research 

Sabates Eye Centers is currently participating in clinical trials for drugs that treat wet macular degeneration, dry macular degeneration, and ocular melanoma. Macular degeneration is a very common retinal disease of older age that affects the central vision. Ocular melanoma is the most common primary eye tumor in adults.

 

If you or someone you know has wet or dry macular degeneration, our research department can talk to you about the possibility of participating in a clinical trial. You can call our main number, 913-261-2020, and ask for the research department.

 

Wet Macular Degeneration

The “wet” form of macular degeneration is caused by retinal blood vessels that leak fluid into the surrounding tissue, causing swelling, or “edema” of the retina. Vision loss can be significant and can come on quickly. The current standard of care involves in-office delivery of a medication to the posterior chamber of the eye, usually on a monthly basis. Current clinical trials are testing medications that may increase the effectiveness of the treatment and/or extend the time between treatments.

 

Dry Macular Degeneration

The “dry” form of macular degeneration is caused by a gradual deterioration in the function and structure of the macular region of the retina. Although visual deterioration is slower than with the wet form, visual disability can be profound in the later stages of the disease. There is currently no treatment for dry macular degeneration, other than vitamin supplements, which may slow the deterioration for some people. Current clinical trials are testing medications that may prove to slow the progression of the disease.

 

Ocular Melanoma

Ocular Melanoma (OM), or melanoma of the eye (also called uveal melanoma) is the most common primary eye cancer in adults and the second most common type of melanoma. In the United States, there are approximately 2,000 new cases each year. Current clinical trials are testing the safety of medications that may prove to slow the progression of or treat the disease.

 

How Do Retina Clinical Research Trials Work?

If you have an eye disease or condition that is the focus of a current or upcoming study, your Sabates Eye Centers doctor may ask if you’re interested in participating in a clinical trial. Patients who choose to participate are asked to sign a consent form after understanding all potential benefits and risks. Clinical trials are normally conducted in four phases. Each has a different purpose and helps scientists answer different questions.

 

Every clinical trial follows a carefully controlled protocol, a study plan that details what we will do in the study. As the trial progresses, we report the results at scientific meetings, to medical journals, and to various sponsors and government agencies. Your rights are fully protected throughout the study. Your name and medical information remain private and are never mentioned in any reports or presentations.

  • Sabates patients who took part in the clinical trials helped prove the effectiveness of Lucentis®.

    Our Patients Proved it

    Sabates patients who took part in the clinical trials helped prove the effectiveness of Lucentis®, a breakthrough medication for the wet form of macular degeneration. The study helped lead to FDA approval of the drug.

  • Clinical research and eye studies normally require twice the testing and documentation.

    Did You Know?

    Unlike most clinical research on other parts of the body, eye studies normally require twice the testing and documentation. Why? You guessed it – because each eye is monitored separately!

  • Clinical eye research specialist Dr. Nelson Sabates, M.D., FACS - Sabates Eye Centers.

    Sabates Eye Centers Clinical Research Specialist

    Dr. Nelson Sabates, M.D., FACS – Dr. Sabates chairs the Department of Ophthalmology at the UMKC School of Medicine and oversees all clinical research trials conducted at the Leawood Eye Center and Truman Medical Center – Lakewood. He sees patients at the Independence, Leawood, Northland, Plaza, and St. Joseph Eye Centers.

For emergency or time sensitive appointments, call 913-261-2020
or 1-800-742-0020 (toll free).

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The scheduling department is open Monday to Friday from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. We will contact you by 5 p.m. the next business day to confirm appointment details.

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Do You Qualify for Retina Clinical Trials?

Your eligibility will vary according to the study’s needs and qualifications for volunteers. Qualifications are generally broken down by:

  • Age
  • Overall health
  • Medications currently taken
  • Presence of diseases or conditions being studied (as well as those that may interfere) 

Studies are normally quite lengthy, as they often monitor years’ worth of individual patient trials and results over multiple phases. Volunteers must be willing and able to visit either the Leawood location on a frequent basis.

Why Sabates Eye Centers?

We believe our private clinical practice, led by our fellowship-trained subspecialists who also research and teach ophthalmology, creates the ideal environment for retina clinical research. At any given time, our retina doctors and residents are involved in a number of retina clinical trials, as well as academic research. We’ve conducted numerous government and industry-sponsored studies over the past 20 years, and many of the findings have resulted in improved eye care for patients all over the world.