Premium Cataract Implants
When we remove the cataract we are removing the lens of your eye. We always replace the cloudy lens with a new lens implant. There are now more choices in lens implants than before, and these new lenses can reduce or in some cases eliminate the need for glasses. Not everyone is a candidate for these lenses and we cannot guarantee that you will not have to wear glasses for some activities. In addition, there is an extra charge for these premium implants that is not covered by insurance or Medicare.
However, if you are interested in becoming less dependent on glasses after your cataract surgery, review the options below and talk to your doctor or our staff to see if you are a candidate.
Astigmatism Correcting Implants
For patients with cataracts and astigmatism there is the AcrySof® Toric lens, which corrects for both conditions simultaneously. Correcting your astigmatism can provide excellent distance vision without depending on glasses.
For patients with cataracts and astigmatism, there are implants that can correct astigmatism. These are the AcrySoft Toric lens and the Tecnis Toric IOL. Correcting for astigmatism will improve your vision for either distance or near but not both. You can be less dependent on glasses but will still need them for some tasks. The Symfony Toric extended range of vision lens has the best chance of allowing you to be independent of glasses. Ask your doctor if its right for you.
Tecnis Symfony Extended Range of Vision IOL
On July 15, 2016, The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved the first intraocular lens (IOL) that provides cataract patients with an extended depth-of-focus, which helps improve their sharpness of vision (visual acuity) at near, intermediate and far distances.
Dr Blecher comments on the recent FDA approval of an extended range intraocular lens in the video below.
While traditional monofocal IOLs have been limited to improving distance vision. The Tecnis Symfony IOL improves visual acuity at close, intermediate and far ranges and, therefore, may reduce the need for patients to wear contact lenses or glasses after cataract surgery.
On August 24, 2016, Dr. Mark Blecher performed one of the first implants of the new extended focus intraocular lens. After the surgery Dr Blecher mentioned that the new cataract implant allows patients to see at multiple distances without having to depend on their glasses. This is a notable improvement over current technologies in that it gives a smooth range of focus for patients from distance up to close. This lens also available in astigmatism correcting version which makes it relatively unique amongst presbyopic correcting your intraocular lenses.
Dr Blecher discusses performing surgery with the Tecnis Symfony Extended Range of Vision IOL
Multifocal IOLs use a different technology to provide both reading and distance vision without glasses. These implants have an optic that can focus light at both distance and near at the same time. The brain learns which image to use after both eyes are implanted and after an adaptation period. They can be very successful in the carefully selected patient, but work best in eyes without astigmatism, and without any other eye diseases such as macular degeneration.
There are two brands of multifocal IOLs we work with, the AcrySof® IQ ReSTOR® IOL and the TECNIS® Multifocal IOL. We have had success with both lenses and your surgeon can discuss which might be best for you.
TECNIS® Multifocal IOL
As with many things, there may be a trade off. If you decide to have a multifocal lens, your use of glasses may decrease, but at the cost of losing some of the sharpness of your vision. There may also be some visual side effects such as halos and glare from lights at night that are more common than with a monofocal IOL.