Lens Exchange Surgery
Refractive Lens Exchange:
The eye is an amazing and complex organ which enables vision. The front window of the eye – the cornea along with the lens which sits behind the pupil act as the optical lens system helping to focus images on the retina (at the back of the eye).
In the young eye the lens is very flexible and can change focus very quickly from distance to close up and vice versa. This happens so fast that one is not even aware of the transition. As one grows older however, the lens starts losing its flexibility and cannot change focus for close up vision. In most individuals this happens between the age of 40 and 50 years.
The human lens is also very clear to start with but usually after middle age starts slowly becoming less transparent. The term cataract is used at a certain stage when the opacities in the lens become visible on examination and may start affecting vision.
What is refractive lens exchange surgery:
The natural lens is removed by keyhole surgery and replaced with an artificial lens implant. The surgery in principle is similar to the cataract surgery, but is undertaken before the development of cataract. A premium artificial lens implant of specific type and power is selected for that particular individual to suit his/her needs and life style. This way one can correct vision for far, and intermediate distance as well as near work, thus reducing dependence on spectacles. This surgery is effective in vision correction in older individuals around and over 50 years of age with high refractive error- long or short sightedness or astigmatism or presbyopia.
Who is suitable for Lens exchange surgery:
Individuals around and over 50 years of age with presbyopia and/or high refractive error (Short or long sightedness or astigmatism) are most suitable. Some individuals between 40 and 50 may also be suitable. You must discuss this with your ophthalmologist.
Who is not suitable for lens exchange surgery:
- Dimness, Haze, Cloudiness, Double vision, Glare.
- Individuals with other coexisting eye problems such as glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy Macular degeneration etc. may not be suitable.
- Individuals younger than 40 years are generally less or unsuitable.
What are the advantages of Lens exchange surgery:
- It can correct long sightedness, shortsightedness, presbyopia as well as astigmatism.
- It can be useful in patients who are not suitable for Laser vision correction or phakic lens implants.
- The natural lens is removed thereby eliminating any need for cataract surgery in future.