Lumenis Aligns with Globally Renowned Ophthalmologists during the World Glaucoma Congress in Paris on June 30th 2011

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In Recognition of the Growing Adoption and the Acceptance of its SLT technology in the Management of Open-Angle Glaucoma

Lumenis Vision, the Ophthalmic Business Unit of Lumenis Ltd. and one of the global leaders in the field of non-refractive ophthalmic lasers, announced today that it will host a panel of 10 distinguished ophthalmologists and glaucoma specialists from around the globe, who will share their insights into the growing and evolving role of Selective Laser Trabeculoplasty (SLT) in the clinical management of open-angle glaucoma.

SLT technology was pioneered and introduced to the medical market by Lumenis in 2001, based on the scientific and clinical work of Mark Latina, MD et.al. It is a safe and non-invasive in-office procedure that effectively reduces eye pressure in patients with open-angle glaucoma – the most common form of glaucoma. The SLT mechanism of action does not rely on costly medications. Instead, it utilizes an advanced non-thermal energy beam that selectively targets specific melanin-containing cells within the angle of the anterior chamber of the eye. This produces a natural biological response that leads to pressure drop shortly after the treatment is performed.

“Ever since Lumenis introduced SLT to the medical community it has made a significant positive impact on the way open-angle glaucoma is being clinically managed worldwide,” said Mr. Kfir Azoulay, who heads the Lumenis Vision global marketing organization. “Our panel of distinguished experts further reinforces the role this exceptional technology can play in halting the progression of glaucoma and preserving the eyesight of patients afflicted with the condition,” added Mr. Azoulay.
Panel Chairperson and Moderator, Keith Barton MD, Glaucoma Service Director & Consultant Ophthalmologist at Moorfields Eye Hospital in London, UK, stated that, “SLT is a clinically-proven therapy that is currently being underutilized as the primary treatment option for glaucoma. If it were used more often as initial therapy instead of medication, many patients could probably remain drop-free for several years, even if not indefinitely.”

Renowned ophthalmologist, Associate Clinical Professor of Ophthalmology at Tufts University School of Medicine, and SLT pioneer, Mark Latina, MD, also shared his thoughts about the growing and evolving role of SLT in glaucoma management: “Since FDA approval 10 years ago, SLT has established itself as a safe and effective modality to treat open angle glaucoma, and its use by ophthalmologists is now widespread. The increasing role of SLT as a viable primary treatment alternative for open-angle glaucoma further confirms SLT’s acceptance and its impact on our approach to the management of the glaucoma patient.“

Madhu Nagar, MD, consultant ophthalmologist and glaucoma specialist from the UK, who performed some of the initial SLT clinical studies in Europe, commented that, “Selective Laser Trabeculoplasty has turned out to be very worthwhile for both glaucoma patients and for us as clinicians, and it has changed our approach towards glaucoma management! SLT is my first choice because it is safe and effective in IOP reduction; compliance is no longer an issue, as it takes pressure control out of the hands of the patient; and, lastly, repeated SLT treatment are safe and effective too.”

Glaucoma specialist Jay Katz, MD, from the prestigious Wills Eye Institute in Philadelphia, USA, also shared his perspectives that, “the emergence of SLT has stimulated a critical reappraisal of the treatment paradigm for open angle glaucoma. Considering each patient's unique clinical status, personal health beliefs, and economic concerns, physicians may now consider Selective Laser Trabeculoplasty (SLT) as an earlier or even first step or as a replacement for existing medical therapy, rather than simply the classic role of the intermediate step between medical failure and incisional surgery.”

SLT may also serve as keystone technology for alleviating the plight of millions of individuals afflicted with glaucoma in developing nations around the globe. Lumenis is currently sponsoring a multi-center SLT clinical study in Africa in cooperation with Right-to-Sight, an Ireland-based charity that focuses exclusively on fighting blindness. "SLT has the potential to revolutionize the treatment of open-angle glaucoma in Africa and other underprivileged regions of the world,” said Pazit Pianka, MD, Senior Ophthalmologist and the Lumenis Vision Medical Director. "Our goal is to demonstrate, as we have successfully done before, that SLT is a clinically viable solution and also the most cost-effective one for the healthcare system in general, and glaucoma patients in particular,” added Dr. Pianka.

Right-to-Sight Founder and Chairperson, Kate Coleman, MD, also added that, “the prevalence of glaucoma is very high in many parts of Africa. So far, in our clinical experience, SLT has consistently reduced intra-ocular pressure by 25-30% in open-angle glaucoma patients. In Kenya, for example, where the average patient is below the poverty line, and where there is a dire shortage of eye surgeons and limited resources for healthcare, the potential impact of SLT treatments in preventing blindness is enormous! We expect to substantiate our experience with the results of our trial in several African countries over the next 18 months," concluded Dr. Coleman.

The complete list of participants in the Lumenis SLT panel, in alphabetical order: Jorge Alvarado, MD (USA); Sanjay Asrani, MD (USA); Keith Barton, MD (UK); Kate Coleman, MD (Ireland); Frank Howes, MD (Australia); Jay Katz, MD (USA); Mark Latina, MD (USA); Chris Leung, MD (Hong Kong, SAR China); Madhu Nagar, MD (UK); Robert Noecker, MD (USA)

About Lumenis
Lumenis, the world's largest medical laser company, is a global developer, manufacturer and distributor of laser and light-based devices for ophthalmic, surgical and aesthetic applications, with more than 800 employees worldwide. Lumenis has 270 registered patents, over 260 FDA clearances, an installed base of over 30,000 systems and a presence in over 100 countries. Lumenis endeavors to bring the finest state of the art technology products to the market, fulfilling the highest standards of excellence, quality and reliability, delivering premium value and service to its customers. The name Lumenis is derived from the Latin words meaning "Light of Life" highlighting the light, which is the basis of our technologies, used to enhance life. For more information about Lumenis and its products, please visit: http://www.lumenis.com

For further information contact:
Michelle Maydan
Director of Corporate Communications
1-866-569-0597
+972-4-959-9004
e-mail: mmaydan(at)lumenis(dot)com
Lumenis®, its logo and Selecta® SLT Laser are trademarks or registered trademarks of the Lumenis group of companies.

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Michelle Maydan
Lumenis, LTD
+972-4-959-9004
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