IOL Intraocular Lens

PersonalEYES, a leader in cataract surgery, offers the most advanced techniques and technologies to treat its cataract patients and enhance their quality of life.

“Many conditions affect people as they age, and cataracts are one of the most common,” says Dr Kerrie Meades, Medical Director. “Cataract sufferers may find that the ‘clouding’ of the eye’s lens that identifies a cataract interferes with their quality of vision and makes normal activities such as driving a car, reading a newspaper or seeing people’s faces increasingly difficult.”

While not all cataracts require surgery, it is the most effective treatment and one of the safest and most common surgical procedures performed. The actual procedure involves removing the cloudy lens and replacing it with an artificial lens called an intraocular lens (IOL).

“The vast majority of patients who undergo cataract surgery today receive mono-focal IOLs, which typically require them to use reading glasses or bifocals for near vision following surgery,” Dr Meades says.

“The good news is that IOL technology has taken a giant leap forward. Now, the objective is not simply to improve patients’ distance vision, but rather to enhance their vision with an IOL that provides them with a range of quality vision.

We are finding that this type of platform is allowing patients to abandon their glasses and enhance their lifestyle.” The intraocular lens is an artificial lens. It is a transparent plastic disc with a similar shape to a natural lens. They are made of silicone, acrylic or PMMA, but other materials are under development.

The intraocular lens is designed to reside inside the eye and replaces your own natural lens because it has been clouded over by a cataract, or to change the eye’s optical power. IOL’s are often appropriate if you are not suitable for LASIK or ASLA.

Most IOLs are fixed mono-focal lenses matched to distance vision. However, other types are available, such as extended depth IOLs or multifocal IOLs which provide focused vision at far and reading distance.

Insertion of an intraocular lens for the treatment of cataracts is the most commonly performed eye surgical procedure. The procedure can be done under local anaesthesia with the patient awake throughout the operation.

The surgical technique most commonly used is called Phacoemulsification Surgery or Small Incision Cataract Surgery. Phacoemulsification is pronounced fay-ko-emul-sah-fah-kay-shun.

The procedure

This procedure enables the removal of the cataract and implantation of the artificial lens through the mico incision (less than 3mm) and ensures little discomfort, a low chance of post-operative complications, fast healing time, and a quick return to normal activities.

  • Step 1 Once a small incision is made, a small tip is inserted to break the cataract into small fragments via ultrasonic vibration. These are then removed by suction via the incision.

  • Step 2 The artificial lens of choice is usually a foldable intraocular lens and can be folded to less than half its size, allowing insertion through the tiny incision. Once inserted, the lens unfolds to its normal full size. The incision is normally so small that it often requires no stitches, or perhaps only one or two.
  • Step 3 After surgery the eye is covered with a shield for protection.