Implanting platinum jewelry in eye - FOX13 News, WHBQ FOX 13

Implanting platinum jewelry in eye

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It's an eye-opening new procedure being done in New York for the first time: a woman is getting a piece of platinum jewelry placed in her eye.

"It's going to be a conversation maker," says Lucy Luckayanko. "I will be able to tell people. It will be unique. It will be sort of my unique factor.

Luckayanko already has a twinkle in her eye, but now she is adding some real bling.

"I'm excited about it," she says. "I liked the idea from the beginning. I was like 'Yeah, why not?'"

Lucy is getting a new procedure at Park Avenue Laser Vision to implant a small platinum heart into her eye. It's called Safesight jewelry.

"The bottom of heart down so pointing diagonal like that," she says. "It's really small, really tiny, really cute."

The procedure has been done hundreds of times in Europe and in Los Angeles, but never before in New York City. Until now.

"To me this is just another way to advance the science of ophthalmology," says Dr. Emil Chynn, the medical director of Park Avenue Laser Vision. Chynn begins the process with an injection of lidocaine to numb the area.

"So now I'm going to put in a speculum, just to kind of keep your eyes open," he says. Then Dr. Chynn makes a small incision where the jewelry will eventually be placed.

"I'm going to take scissors and make a little incision and try to divide a pocket in between the sclera - the white part of your eye - and conjunctiva clear part of your eye, and it just sits there," he says.

The procedure costs about $3,000. And though it may sound scary, Dr. Chynn says he believes it's actually pretty safe.

"It's a very thin piece of platinum that's designed for insertion on the top of the eye, it's not in the eye so there's no risk of blindness or anything at all," he says. "She could have a little bit of local bleeding. That could go away in a couple days or couple weeks. She could have an infection but we'll prevent that with antibiotics."

But the jewelry has not been FDA approved.

And the American Academy of Ophthalmology is warning consumers about the dangers.

In a statement to Fox 5, the AAO said there is not "sufficient evidence to support the safety or therapeutic value of this procedure." It urges consumers to "avoid placing in the eye any foreign body or material that is not approved by the FDA."

A few days after the procedure, Lucy shows the little heart on her right eye.

"50 percent of my friends are like what is it? Why do you need it oh my god are you crazy?" she says. "You're going to put something in your eye! But 50 percent of my friends are like oh my god it's super cool."

So keep an eye on this new eye jewelry procedure. You may see more of it in the future. Though it may not be for everyone, as they say, beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

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