Multifocal Intraocular Lenses (IOLs)
Artificial lenses (IOLs) are implanted in the eye to replace natural lenses for patients with cataracts, presbyopia or severe refractive errors. Until recently, IOLs were only available to correct distance vision. These monofocal lenses helped improve distance vision after cataract surgery, but patients still needed glasses or contact lenses for near vision activities like reading and playing cards. Now, advancements in technology have produced multifocal IOLs that allow patients to see clearly at all distances -- near, far and many distances in between. Multifocal IOLs such as ReSTOR®, and Crystalens® preserve distance vision and correct presbyopia so cataract surgery patients -- and patients seeking treatment for presbyopia alone -- can enjoy clear sight without relying on glasses.
The procedure to replace a patient's natural lens with a multifocal IOL is the same as that used in cataract surgery.
Crystalens® is a new cataract replacement lens (IOL) that works naturally with muscles in the eye to retain the eye's ability to "accommodate" - shift focus between nearby and distant objects - after cataract surgery. It is the first FDA-approved accommodating lens. With other IOLs, patients lose this ability and require corrective measures such as glasses or contact lenses. Crystalens can treat both cataracts and presbyopia.
Unlike rigid lenses, the flexible silicone Crystalens features hinges that allow it to move with the eye's muscles and accommodate seamlessly, thereby reducing or eliminating the need for vision correction.
The Crystalens is implanted using the same, nearly risk-free cataract surgery techniques as with other IOLs.
Manufactured by Abbott Medical Optics, the Tecnis® Multifocal IOL helps cataract patients achieve clear vision at all distances after surgery, including improved night vision and driving capabilities. Using wavefront technology, the Tecnis lens allows patients to restore the clear, functional vision of their youth. After surgery, up to nine out of ten patients no longer need to wear glasses, results much more successful than those achieved with standard multifocal lenses. It is the only lens FDA-approved to enhance functional vision and night-driving performance.
The advanced Tecnis lens is ideal for patients who have difficulty reading and seeing objects closely, as well as those with poor night vision. This lens is implanted during the same procedure that removes the cloudy lens, and does not require any additional incisions. Patients can enjoy immediate vision improvement in most cases.
Toric IOLs are specially designed for patients with astigmatism. Traditionally, surgical correction of astigmatism required making a series of small incisions (called LRIs, or limbal relaxing incisions) around the cornea to make it more spherical instead of football-shaped. Implanting toric IOLs often improves vision without the need for these extra incisions, and also allows patients to enjoy a faster, more comfortable recovery.
Traditionally, when a cataract develops, the eye lens is replaced with an artificial intraocular lens (IOL). The lens is usually focused for distance vision, requiring that the patient need to wear reading glasses or contact lenses to focus in on nearer objects.
Through recent advancements in lens technology, an IOL is now available that can provide the patient with a greater range of vision while reducing the need for glasses and contacts. The ReSTOR intraocular lens provides a full range of functional vision for patients that desire a significant decrease in their dependence on glasses or contacts.