If you are thinking about having Lasik, IntraLasik, PRK, LASEK, Epi-Lasik, RLE, or P-IOL eye surgery, this is the forum to research your concerns or ask your questions.


Postby GraceB » Mon Jun 25, 2007 8:49 pm

What are your thoughts on the implantable contact lens versus replacing the lens - of course in a situation that doesn't involve cataracts.

Though I've had a lasik evaluation and am approved as a candidate - my high anxiety tells me that a valium will not be sufficent.

I have seriously been considering lens replacement because you are given more sedation and so I feel I could manage that procedure and be rid of glasses.

Now I've been reading about the implantable contact lens and wonder if this isn't less serious and drastic than lens replacement - but also wondering if more sedation is used than with Lasik.

Any experiences? Thanks, GraceB
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Postby LasikExpert » Mon Jun 25, 2007 10:15 pm

There is no such thing as an "implantable contact lens" in the US. That is just marketing.

The Visian ICL (Implantable Collamer Lens) is a phakic intraocular lens (P-IOL) implanted in the eye immediately behind the iris (colored part). With a P-IOL the natural crystalline lens within the eye stays intact.

Refractive Lens Exchange (RLE) is the same as cataract surgery. The crystalline lens is removed and replaced with an artificial intraocular lens (IOL).

A key factor that indicates if P-IOL or RLE is most appropriate is whether or not the patient can accommodate (change focus to near objects). If the patient cannot accommodate, then RLE is generally more appropriate. If the patient can accommodate, then P-IOL is generally more appropriate because RLE with most IOLs will halt all accommodation.

There are many other factors that determine candidacy for RLE or P-IOL. No P-IOLs are approved in the US to treat hyperopia (farsighted, longsighted) vision. You may not have enough room in the front portion of the eye for a P-IOL to fit. If you have very high myopia, a P-IOL may not be able to work and you may be at elevated risk for retina problems with RLE. Neither P-IOLs nor RLE directly resolve astigmatism.

Both surgeries require virtually the same sedation. You will be aware, but there is virtually no pain or disturbance during the surgery. A general anesthetic (knocked out) is generally hard on the body and avoided when possible.
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