Other Refractive Surgery Options
Implantable Contact Lenses & Refractive Lens Exchange
LASIK is only one of several refractive surgery options available to those looking to improve their vision. At Grossnickle Eye Center, our experienced surgeons also provide implantable contact lenses and refractive lens exchange.
Whether LASIK or another refractive procedure is best for you, our focus is always on safety, customized treatment plans, and excellent results. Our doctors and staff develop a personalized recommendation based on your individual needs and lifestyle.
What is Visian ICL™?
Imagine the luxury of taking perfect vision for granted. Now, with the Visian ICL you are finally able to do that. The Visian ICL is an implantable contact lens that works with the eye to correct vision. Unlike traditional contact lenses that go on the surface of the eye, Visian ICL is surgically inserted into the eye where it provides excellent quality of vision for a wide range of correction needs.
Quality of Vision
The Visian ICL offers unparalleled quality of vision, providing excellent contrast. Two unique factors help explain this superior optical performance. First, the Visian ICL is made of Collamer–a soft, flexible lens material that contains a small amount of collagen–making the lens extremely biocompatible for a lifetime of clear vision. Second, the lens is placed inside of the eye, where it continues to focus light accurately without any maintenance required.
The Visian ICL is inserted into the eye by an ophthalmologist through a small, micro incision. The lens unfolds in the eye and is positioned between the iris and the natural lens where it stays indefinitely. The procedure takes approximately 15 minutes and is performed on an outpatient basis.
Advanced Lens Material
The Visian ICL is made of Collamer, an advanced lens material that has unique properties. Collamer transmits light and reduces reflections that can interfere with vision, so you see clearly. Made of a copolymer and collagen, Collamer is also highly biocompatible. It allows the Visian ICL to rest quietly in position while accurately correcting vision. Collamer is the only lens material made with collagen, which is the best choice for a lens that is going to remain inside your body for a lifetime.
The Visian ICL does not alter any structures within the eye or on the cornea. If necessary, it can be removed from the eye by a simple surgical procedure.
Invisible and Undetectable
You won’t be able to see the Visian ICL in your eye, and neither will anybody else. Exceptional quality of vision will be the only reminder that you have had 21st century vision correction.
Wide-Range Vision Correction
Anyone seeking clear vision may be a candidate for the Visian ICL, including patients with extreme or special vision correction needs.
Established Technology, Worldwide Acceptance
The Visian ICL is the first lens of its kind to receive FDA approval for use in the U.S. It is based on many years of research and development in adapting the proven technology of the IOL (intraocular lens) used for cataract surgery. The IOL cataract procedure is familiar to ophthalmologists and is performed safely on millions of patients each year.
While the technology is similar, the Visian ICL procedure differs from cataract surgery as the natural lens is not removed from the eye. Instead, Visian ICL is placed in front of the natural lens and works with it to correct vision.
Studies have shown that the Visian ICL provides one of the best postoperative results of all refractive procedures available. Patients report a very high level of satisfaction with the Visian ICL procedure. In the rigorous US clinical trial, 99.4 % of patients said they were satisfied three years after the procedure.
What is Refractive Lens Exchange?
It is an unavoidable fact of life that aging and reading glasses go hand-in-hand. The good news is that there are vision correction options that may be able to reduce or eliminate your dependence on glasses. One of those options is refractive lens exchange (RLE), an approach to vision correction that uses proven surgical techniques to achieve dramatically improved vision for many patients.
What happens during RLE?
With this procedure, we replace your eye’s natural lens with a lens implant. Using a sophisticated artificial lens, we may be able to reduce your dependence on reading glasses or bifocals and improve your distance vision. While it sounds like a cutting-edge surgery, surgeons perform a similar procedure over two million times each year on cataract patients.
Refractive lens exchange bears many similarities to today’s cataract surgery. As a medical procedure, cataract surgery is one of safest and most frequently performed procedures today. Cataract surgery, like refractive lens exchange, involves the removal of the natural lens and its replacement with an artificial lens.
To replace the lens, the surgeon makes a micro incision (about 3 mm) under the cornea. The surgeon breaks up the lens using ultrasonic vibrations and then gently removes it from the eye. The natural lens is replaced by an “implantable” lens, which is inserted through the micro incision. Typically, the second eye will be corrected about two weeks after the first procedure is performed.
Am I a candidate for RLE?
The best candidates for refractive lens exchange are farsighted patients who need reading glasses or bifocals. These patients typically receive the best visual results after the procedure. This procedure may also be the right solution if you are too nearsighted or have corneas that are too thin for laser vision correction. It is also a viable alternative for those who want to eliminate their dependence on traditional or progressive bifocals and those who may be showing signs of developing cataracts.