Artificial Lenses Have Long Been Used to Correct Vision
Dharmendra Patel, M.D., Mayo Clinic
DEAR MAYO CLINIC:
What are intraocular lenses? Are the lenses themselves and the procedure to place them considered safe?
Intraocular lenses are artificial lenses placed within the eye to correct a person's vision. The lenses are approved by the
Intraocular lenses have long been successfully used to replace natural lenses that are removed due to a cataract -- clouding of an eye's normally clear lens. During cataract surgery, the damaged lens is taken out, and an intraocular lens is implanted in its place. Intraocular lenses are made of plastic, acrylic or silicone. Once placed, intraocular lenses can't be seen or felt. They become a permanent part of the eye and don't require any care.
A variety of intraocular lenses with different features are available. Some lenses are rigid plastic and implanted through an incision that requires several stitches to close. However, many intraocular lenses are flexible, allowing a smaller incision that requires no stitches. The surgeon folds this type of lens and inserts it into the empty capsule where the natural lens used to be. Once inside the eye, the lens unfolds, filling the space left by the natural lens.
Some types of intraocular lenses block ultraviolet light and other types work like bifocals to provide both near and distant vision. If you're considering cataract surgery, before the procedure you should discuss the different types of intraocular lenses with your eye surgeon to determine what's best for you.
Cataract surgery is one of the safest and most effective surgical procedures performed in
More recently, intraocular lenses have been used not only for cataract surgery, but also to correct for nearsightedness (myopia). These lenses are called phakic intraocular lenses. The term "phakic" refers to an eye that still has its natural lens. Instead of replacing the eye's lens, a phakic intraocular lens is implanted in front of the lens to retain the eye's natural focusing ability.
Some people have opted for phakic intraocular lenses rather than other types of refractive surgery to correct their vision, such as LASIK surgery or photorefractive keratectomy (PRK). One of the main benefits of phakic intraocular lenses over other surgical options is that the procedure is reversible. Should a person's prescription change, or if the results are unsatisfactory, the lens can be adjusted or removed completely. Another advantage is its capability to correct high degrees of nearsightedness that are not easily corrected by other surgical procedures.
Although phakic intraocular lenses have been in use for several years, initial data shows that they are both safe and effective. One side effect that has been noted with phakic intraocular lenses is that, because the implanted lenses have a relatively small diameter, they can cause a halo effect or glare while driving at night, especially in people who have large pupils.
If you're interested in intraocular lenses, talk to your eye-care professional about the risks and benefits. He or she can help you determine if these lenses are a good fit for your long-term visual health.
Medical Edge from
Available at Amazon.com:
- Can Surgery Treat Type 2 Diabetes?
- Self-Care Techniques to Relieve Discomfort From Buttock Pain
- Artificial Lenses Have Long Been Used to Correct Vision
- Gene Mutation That Causes Huntington's Can Occur Spontaneously
- Is It Better to Stop Smoking Abruptly or Gradually?
- Brain Scan Alone Cannot Predict Likelihood of Dementia
- Is Sunscreen Dangerous? 4 Sun Protection Dos And Don'ts
- Low Platelet Count Not Necessarily Reason to Postpone Surgery
- Could Swimming in Cool Water Cause a Heart Attack?
- Bringing Psoriasis Under Control
- Best Summer Foods for Sensitive Stomachs
- Fight the Common Mold Allergy
- Largest Ever Cell Phone Cancer Study is Inconclusive
- Treating Early-Stage Esophageal Cancer
- TNF Inhibitors Offer Relief to Those With Rheumatoid Arthritis
- Prostate Exam Good First Stop When PSA Levels Increase
- 7 Nasty Germs That Could Land Your Kid in the Hospital And How to Avoid Them
- Secondhand Smoke A Serious Public and Personal Health Problem
- What to do About Excessive Belching and Feeling Full?
- Chest Pain: A Heart Attack or Something Else?
- Screening Plays Key Role in Detecting Polyps Before They Become Cancerous
- Learn How to Read Supplement Labels
- Compression-Only CPR Can Replace Conventional CPR in Many Circumstances
- Diabetes: Could You Have Diabetes and Not Know It
- Fighting Inflammation with Food
- Cortisone Injections Unlikely to Have Negative Affect on Bones
- Bad Health Habits Rob Years From Life Span
- The Importance of Decreasing Dietary Sodium
- Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): Takes Your Breath Away
- 7 Ways to Prevent Heart Disease
- Hypotension or Stiff Arteries May Cause Low Diastolic Blood Pressure
- Is It OK to Travel to a High Altitude With High Blood Pressure?
- Existing Drugs to Treat Herpes Are Very Effective
- Dry Mouth Can Be a Serious Problem
- 6 Simple Ways to Improve Symptoms of Fibromyalgia
- All About Gout: Old Disease Becoming More Common
- Frequent Monitoring Critical to Effectively Manage Scleroderma
- How to Identify Suicide Risk Before It's Too Late
- Tips for Natural Allergy Relief
- Inflammation May Play Role in Irritable Bowel Syndrome
- Bouncing Back After Being Sick
- Nicotine Patch May Offer Some Benefit to Ulcerative Colitis
- Common Myths and Misconceptions About Diabetes
- Vitamin E Supplements Not Recommended for Those With Diabetes
- Tick-Borne Disease Risk Peaks in Spring and Summer
- Meibomitis Creates Receptive Environment for Bacteria
- Top 4 Seasonal Allergy Mistakes
- Stress Less: Ten Strategies That Work
- Paralyzed Limbs Revived by Hacking Into Nerves
- Can Acid Reflux Damage my Esophagus
- Treadmill Test Can Reveal Hidden Problems in Heart
- Suffering From Allergies? Tailor Treatment to Your Symptoms
- Researchers Break Through to Unconscious Patients
- Key Factors Related to Heart Attack Risk
- Type 2 Diabetes Increases Risk for Cardiovascular Problems
- Hypochondria: The Impossible Illness
- Surgeries Can be Combined But May Not be Necessary
- Is Heartburn Surgery the Answer?
- Best Cooking Methods for Heartburn Sufferers
- 14 Things You Might Not Know About Aspirin
Copyright © 2010 Mayo Clinic. All rights reserved.