An intraocular lens implant, or IOL, replaces the eye’s cloudy lens during cataract surgery. Everyone has unique vision requirements and goals, which is why Dr. Jay Schwartz and our team at Schwartz Laser Eye Center offer several types of IOLs to suit a variety of needs. One option is Bausch + Lomb’s Crystalens AO accommodating lens, which treats not only cataracts but also presbyopia (the age-related loss of near and intermediate vision). Crystalens is able to improve near vision without compromising intermediate or distance vision. More than twice the number of patients with Crystalens reported seeing clearly at all distances, compared to patients with standard IOLs.
Understanding How Crystalens Works
Crystalens is the first and only FDA-approved accommodating IOL for the treatment of cataracts and presbyopia. A healthy lens flexes to bring objects at different distances into clear focus. Presbyopia occurs when the lens loses its flexibility and becomes more rigid; the eye loses some of its close-up vision and glasses are needed to use a smartphone, read a menu and perform other daily tasks.
An accommodating lens is modeled after a natural, healthy lens and mimics its behavior. Instead of remaining stationary in the eye like a standard IOL, the Crystalens has a special hinge that helps it move or flex with the muscles of the eye to focus on objects at all distances (including near, intermediate and far). For distance vision, the lens sits at the back of the eye. For intermediate vision, it gently flexes forward. For near vision, it flexes forward even further. Whether it’s going from reading to looking out the window, the focal transition feels more organic than with other types of IOLs.
Another advantage of the Crystalens is that because of its design, very few patients experience problems with night vision, halos and glare. These issues are more common with other types of IOLs. Unlike other multifocal IOLs that project multiple images to the back of the eye — requiring the brain to adjust to the differences — Crystalens focuses a single image that is consistent with normal, healthy vision.
In clinical trials, more than 88 percent of patients implanted with a Crystalens saw better at all distances, compared to 35 percent of patients with standard IOLs. A sub-study found that Crystalens patients enjoyed excellent distance, intermediate and near vision for up to seven years. Most patients rarely (if at all) need to wear reading glasses after having the Crystalens implanted.
Quick Placement and Rapid Healing
Crystalens is implanted during cataract surgery, which is quick, safe and relatively painless. When receiving the Crystalens, patients’ eyes are numbed so they don’t feel any uncomfortable sensations during the procedure. The recovery period is typically very short, and most people return to work and their normal activities within a day or two with noticeably sharper vision.
Learn More about Crystalens IOLs
If you have cataracts and presbyopia, and are contemplating your surgery and IOL options, Dr. Schwartz can provide more information during consultation. Please request a consultation at Schwartz Laser Eye Center by calling 480-483-EYES (3937) or 888-553-EYES, or by sending us an email.