What Is An Intraocular Lens?
At Boston Vision, our providers take the time to examine every cataract patient thoroughly before deciding on a suitable treatment plan for their condition and desired results. One of the tools at our disposal for treating cataracts is intraocular lenses that should permanently improve vision for patients – sometimes without the need for additional glasses or contacts.
What Are Intraocular Lenses?
Intraocular lenses (IOLs) are permanent artificial lenses that replace the eye’s (or eyes’) natural lens and restore visual acuity without the cloudiness that occurs with cataracts. Much like corrective lenses, there are different focusing powers that our ophthalmologists will fine-tune to give you the best chance at seeing clearly after the procedure without the need for glasses. This involves taking highly precise measurements of various parts of your eye and visual acuity for the best results, which is why Boston Vision is uniquely equipped to handle IOL procedures.
Different Types of IOLs
There are different manufacturers and materials that create IOLs. The most common materials are acrylic, silicone, or some other plastic composition that also includes special coatings to protect the interior of the eye from sun damage.
At Boston Vision, we offer four types of IOL that might be right for different patients depending on their condition.
- Monofocal: The simplest lens, mono-focal lenses provide one focusing distance for nearsighted or farsighted people.
- Trifocal or Multifocal: These lenses provide up to three (trifocal) focusing distances at different parts of the lens. These are advanced devices for people with complex vision correction needs.
- Accommodative: Rather than including multiple focal lengths, accommodative lenses move slightly while in the eye, allowing for a fuller range of vision. However, due to their generally lesser effectiveness in the long term, we do not recommend them in most cases.
- Toric: These IOLs are commonly recommended for people with astigmatism, with the lens bent at different parts of the eye to adjust for an irregularly shaped cornea. Multifocal lenses can also come as toric.
Although we offer many different types of lenses, only mono-focal lenses are typically covered fully by insurance companies. However, we can work to provide an affordable option if the “upgrade” to a more suitable IOL type would mean you no longer require glasses or contacts. Otherwise, the other lens types might incur additional costs.
The IOL Procedure
Intraocular lenses are placed during cataract surgery, where your current lens will be gently removed and replaced by the chosen lens and focusing power using one of several techniques and eye surgery devices. These include some of the latest laser eye surgery technology as well as many customizable options that provide quick results with little downtime.
Recovering from cataract surgery is not difficult. Your surgeon may provide a covering to protect your eye(s) for a few hours, but most people are back to their normal lives after just a day of recuperation.
Learn More About IOLs and Cataract Surgery
The idea of eye surgery can be intimidating and expensive-sounding, but when cataracts or other lens conditions are interfering with your daily life and making it hard to live, it’s time to seek help. Learn more about your options for IOL implants at Boston Vision by contacting the nearest location online today.