seeBOOST is electronic prescription glasses for individuals coping with central vision loss from Macular Degeneration or Diabetes. Although our product was developed primarily with these two medical conditions in mind, we have found many individuals with other low vision conditions have benefited.
The only way to know if seeBOOST will work for you is to try it. You can find out here about our Free Evaluation.
We designed seeBOOST to be easy to use, and also easy to try. Just like prescription glasses, you need to go to any optometrist and get a prescription for far distance (don't worry, seeBOOST works at all distances, including down to a few inches), and your Pupilary Distance (PD). These are standard measurements (called a "refraction") that all optometrists perform for the simplest eye exams. However, we always recommend that you get a comprehensive eye exam. seeBOOST is currently available as a Free Evaluation anywhere in the U.S. Contact us for more information.
seeBOOST is specially developed to target central vision loss and to be usable for hours during each day. While individuals with other visual impairments have also benefited, each and every feature of seeBOOST was conceived, designed and optimized to help those with central vision loss, the primary impairment suffered by people with Macular Degeneration or Diabetic Retinopathy.
There are no extra gimmicks or features that encumber the user or add extra weight. It is just like your current prescription glasses: wear it and it improves your vision. Focusing on central vision loss allows seeBOOST to offer many important advantages:
There are 3 million people in the United States today who have central vision loss in both eyes due to these two diseases, and this population is the fastest growing segment of vision loss in the world.
Our purpose is to make the best products for this class of diseases, while also making them accessible to an aging population without unnecessary technological complication. Because many people with Macular Degeneration are older, our product is lightweight and practical, like regular prescription eyeglasses.
Our focus on these specific conditions allows us to make the best solution for them. No compromises were made or extra, unneeded features added.
seeBOOST is monocular (on one eye only) for several good reasons. The most important reason is that this is what provides the optimal benefit to individuals with central vision loss from AMD and DR.
The disease progression of AMD (wet or dry) and DR typically takes many years. During this time, it is quite common that one eye is more degraded and the other eye is "better" which also becomes the dominant eye. Only in rare cases are both eyes impacted equally.
The greatest benefit to improving your vision is to help the better eye, not the worse eye. Improving the worse eye usually provides no net benefit as compared to the improving better eye, and in fact adds weight, increases cost and reduces battery life.
In fact, there is a strong negative impact to trying to improve both eyes. As mentioned above, there is hardly any or no benefit to improving the worse eye, but there are significant drawbacks to doing so:
seeBOOST weights less than an ounce (25 grams). It is the lightest low vision aid available anywhere, and lighter than most purely optical devices and certainly lighter and smaller than all the head-mounted electronic products.
seeBOOST feels exactly like wearing conventional prescription glasses. Since the seeBOOST system is mounted on the outer part of the prescription lens, there is no interference with your eyebrows or eyelashes. Most people don't notice the additional ounce of weight. Finally, there are no other straps on the top or back of your head or brow to hold it, because it is so light. It is easy to put on and take off - just like regular prescription glasses.
seeBOOST has no perceptible motion delay, meaning that the motion is completely natural. If you wave your hand back-and-forth very fast in front of your face and look at it with both eyes (one eye with seeBOOST and the other eye open), you will not notice any time lag between the two eyes. This is important because seeBOOST mimics your natural vision as closely as possible, allowing many hours of continuous use.
After a bit of practice, it becomes completely natural and easy to use seeBOOST for tasks that require magnification and to instantly switch to the other eye for other tasks. Normally-sighted people do this all the time with "monovision" contact or intraocular (cataract) lenses. In this example, one eye's lens focuses for close tasks (like reading) and the other eye for far tasks (like walking or watching television). The brain automatically selects the appropriate eye based on what the person is doing at each instant in time - switching back and forth is automatic and requires no action or thinking.
Often when a person tries seeBOOST for the first time, they may squint the other eye, and we cover-up that eye temporarily just to get going. But with a little bit of practice you can have both eyes wide open all the time and benefit from both eyes in different ways simultaneously.
We are working to educate ophthalmologists and optometrists about seeBOOST since many today are not aware of this new product. Although we have already received positive endorsements from several retinal ophthalmologists who have had a number of their patients become very successful users of seeBOOST, we won’t be happy until every doctor knows about this important option to improve your quality of life.
Remember the job of an ophthalmologist is to diagnose and treat diseases through medicine, laser therapies and/or surgeries. In the case of Macular Degeneration and Diabetic Retinopathy, the ophthalmologist has a critically important role in controlling the growth of new blood vessels forming under the retina, cauterizing blood vessels (in the case of wet AMD), or providing Macugen/Lucentis/Eylea injections to patients. Because they are focused on treatment options, these doctors are more concerned with drug therapies and surgery than with assistive devices like seeBOOST.
Ask your doctor about seeBOOST! It is very likely that they, like a growing number of doctors and practitioners, will want to know about it to help their patients.
By design, seeBOOST works best for individuals with central vision loss, specifically those with Age-related Macular Degeneration or Diabetic Retinopathy. Visual acuity from 20/100 to 20/400 is the range that works best, although it has certainly worked for people where Best-Corrected Visual Acuity (BCVA) was worse than 20/600. It can also work for persons with better vision than 20/100, although its benefits may not be as acute - but better to adapt and learn now than to wait till vision gets worse and adaptation gets harder.
seeBOOST does not work for diseases that only affect peripheral vision, because it is designed to augment only the center (roughly 32 degrees) of vision. A general rule-of-thumb is that if magnification (such as from a hand-held magnifier) can help with your vision, then seeBOOST may also be useful.
No U.S. state allows driving while looking through an electronic device, whether seeBOOST or any other electronic device. While we plan to work to update these regulations in partnership with various state agencies (including the Departments of Motor Vehicles), today it is illegal to use seeBOOST while driving.
No and yes. Although the specific technical features of seeBOOST allow it to be used during walking ("ambulation" as the doctors like to call it), we strongly discourage you from walking while wearing seeBOOST on your face. Rather, you should take it off and let hang on your neck (using the lanyard that is provided) before you walk, and then immediately put it back on when you reach your destination (for example, if you stand-up from the chair to go to the refrigerator).
The reason we do not want you to walk with seeBOOST is due to the increased risk of falling. It is not natural to walk while looking at the world that is magnified. Not only is there a loss of depth perception, but one can develop instant loss of balance, and risk falling (not even tripping on something, but simply falling). This risk applies to the normally-sighted just as much as it does to the visually impaired.
Having stated the above disclaimers, there are Occupational Therapists who can train you to walk with seeBOOST (or any other magnification device). For example, persons who get Implanted Miniature Telescope devices in one eye get significant therapy to teach them how to walk, since they obviously cannot remove the implant in their eye when they walk. We strongly encourage you to obtain help from licensed Orientation and Mobility Specialists for people with visual impairments. That training may be covered by Medicare if prescribed by a licensed physician or optometrist
seeBOOST generally takes 1 to 2 weeks to initially get adjusted. There are a number of cases where users have immediately taken to it with no training. However, there are a number of factors that need to be considered, including:
Beyond the initial few weeks, using seeBOOST to help with specific tasks may take additional time. We recommend that you don't rush into using seeBOOST for too many new tasks at once. Rather, if you go through step-by-step, learning a new task at a time (over the course of days or weeks), you will actually accelerate your usage of seeBOOST for more and more tasks, using it for longer periods during your day. This is the training protocol that we recommend when you try seeBOOST.
We never say that seeBOOST restores your vision. AMD and DR are currently incurable and non-reversible. We do say that seeBOOST can help restore your "functional vision". This means that we help you maximize the benefits of the remaining portion of your vision (the non-damaged parts of your retina) in order to allow you to perform "functions" (or "tasks").
Luckily for many persons with AMD and DR, there remains a sufficient amount of vision (not only the peripheral part, but also just outside of the center region). seeBOOST electronically maximizes the utility of that remaining vision.
We are currently conducting a multi-site medical clinical trial. We will publish the results as soon as they are completed. Here is a recent study discussing the state of the current solutions available.
seeBOOST costs $3,499, which includes the prescription glasses, all accessories, the Warranty and Service Plans.
We offer third-party financing, with payments as low as $99/month.
There is no insurance or Medicare coverage of seeBOOST at this time. Unfortunately, this is also true for all other assistive devices for the visually impaired. We plan to work to change this, but this battle will take years to fight.
As of today, there are only a few sources of financial assistance to help pay for seeBOOST. Some of these include the Veterans Administration, Texas Workforce Commission (other states have similar programs), and school programs for visually impaired children. Part of our mission is to not only expand this network of third party financial assistance, but to also help in making it accessible to our customers. Please subscribe to our newsletter for updates on financial assitance programs.
12 months limited manufacturer's warranty. Here is our current warranty policy.
You also get a free 24 month service plan as part of your purchase. Here is our current service policy.
We offer a Free Evaluation. If you are not satisfied you can return seeBOOST within the evaluation period.
Fast, often within 1 to 2 days, plus shipping time. The sooner you contact us if there are any problems, the faster we can respond.
An optometrist or optician fits seeBOOST just like ordinary prescription glasses. The fitting process involves adjusting the nose pieces to ensure that the glasses sit high on the nose bridge, and the ear pieces so that the glasses don't slip down. Once adjusted, seeBOOST feels exactly like wearing conventional prescription glasses.
seeBOOST is designed specifically to be easy to use. There is only one large knob to learn. Everything else is automatic.
Diseases like AMD and DR are not very predictable. If your vision gets worse (or progressively better and worse as you get treatment shots in the eye), you can compensate for the change in vision by adjusting the amount of magnification that you use for specific tasks. For example, when reading the newspaper and your vision degrades, you will find that you are subconsciously dialing-in more magnification to read. The actual amount of magnification (3x, 4x, 5x, etc.) is not important to know, as you simply turn the knob more until you can comfortably read.
The more you use seeBOOST and acclimate to its use, the easier it is to continue to use it if your vision degrades further, since your brain has learned to adapt.
We will gladly change the lenses to the new prescription for a nominal fee. This is covered by the Service Plan. Note that as we age, our distance prescription rarely changes - the lenses in seeBOOST are for distance, not near (seeBOOST takes care of auto-focusing at near, intermediate and far distances, so your eye does not need to change focus).
seeBOOST works outdoors as well as indoors. On bright sunny days, it may be difficult to see a clear image (just like it's hard to see the smartphone screen in sunlight). In this case, we recommend that you slip on the occluder (included with seeBOOST) to block out some of the sunlight.
seeBOOST helps with many daily activities, including the usual ones such as reading, recognizing faces, watching television, playing cards with friends, using the computer or smartphone, etc. Here is a list of interesting activities seeBOOST enables our customers to do:
Depending on the brightness setting, seeBOOST can last from 4 to 6 hours on a single charge. The battery recharges in under 2 hours. We recommend that you make it a habit to charge the battery every night regardless of how depleted it may be.