Having cataract removal surgery means having your natural lenses, which have become cloudy with protein accumulation, removed. You cannot see well without a lens to focus light as it passes through your eye. To restore optimal vision, you and your ophthalmologist will choose a replacement lens called an IOL, intraocular lens, that is suitable for your needs and lifestyle. The purpose of the intraocular lens is to help you see as well as you did before having cataract surgery. Depending on the lens that you choose, it's possible that your vision could end up better than it was before your cataracts formed.
Premium intraocular lenses hold special value due to numerous benefits. At Cape Fear Cataract & Cornea with Dr. Brian Groat, you can explore multiple options. Contact us today at 910-769-4590 to schedule your visit!
What is a Light Adjustable Lens?
The light adjustable lens is the first intraocular lens that is truly customized to your vision. This is because your doctor customizes the lens after your surgery rather than before. It is called a light adjustable lens because the doctor uses ultraviolet light to adjust the magnification prescription of the lenses once your eyes have healed after cataract removal surgery.
How Does a Light Adjustable Lens Work?
Light adjustable intraocular lenses are made using photo-sensitive material that responds to ultraviolet light. After cataract removal surgery, the light adjustable lenses that have been placed are treated with ultraviolet light, which alters the shape of the lens to perfect your vision. The light treatment that shapes the new lens is completely painless and takes less than five minutes.
Who is an Ideal Candidate for Light Adjustable Lenses?
The light adjustable lens is made from material that is suitable for nearly every patient. If cataract removal surgery is in your future, this is an intraocular lens that you should consider if your preference is to reduce or eliminate your reliance on eyeglasses in the future.
Should I Get Light Adjustable Lenses During My Cataract Surgery?
It can be somewhat difficult to determine which intraocular lens would be ideal. Dr. Groat will provide you with the pertinent information you need about each of your choices. From there, the decision is in your hands. One of the benefits of choosing a light adjustable intraocular lens is its customizability. There is little guesswork involved in achieving the most appropriate magnification for your lenses, which means you might just get the clearest, crispest vision you've had in a very long time.
What Makes a Light Adjustable Lens Different from Other Lens Options?
As advances have been made in the field of ophthalmology, we've been granted better and better lens replacement options. The light adjustable lens is one more option to add to an already-impressive list, and it's a big jump up from the next best lens! In a standard cataract removal process, the doctor measures your vision the best they can and determines which IOL may be best for you. This IOL will be pre-set with its magnification before surgery. Using the light adjustable lens, the customization occurs after surgery, after your eyes have completely healed and are no longer clouded by cataracts. In this process, there is no guesswork. Your light adjustable IOL is customized two weeks after your cataract removal surgery using light and your eyes' natural shape to guide the ideal magnification.
Are there any Risks with Light Adjustable Lenses?
Cataract surgery and the placement of any IOL comes with certain risks. After receiving a light adjustable intraocular lens, you must be diligent in following your aftercare instructions. In particular, you must wear the eyewear given to you by Dr. Groat. These special eyeglasses protect your new lenses from daylight, allowing for the most accurate adjustment when you return to the office. Complications can occur if your new lenses are not properly protected as outlined in your post-op instructions. If you have questions at any time, please contact our office for assistance.
Does Insurance Cover Getting Light Adjustable Lenses?
Cataract procedures are typically covered, at least partially, by insurance and Medicare. While some out-of-pocket fees may be required, many patients note that the improvement of their vision afterward is often worth the price.
How Long Will It Take to Recover from Light Adjustable Lenses Surgery?
After your cataract procedure and having light adjustable lenses placed, your recovery will be minimal. Most patients can return home the same day and return to their work and normal activities within two days as their vision clears from the blurriness of the surgery. During your recovery time, it’s important to treat your eye area and face with gentleness, especially while in the shower or washing your face. Avoiding intense physical activity during this time is also recommended to avoid the risk of complications during recovery.
How Long Will My Vision Last After Surgery?
While it takes most patients an average of 48 hours to gain back their clear vision after their cataract procedure and light-adjustable lens placement procedure, it may take an additional one to two weeks for your vision to completely adjust as your eyes adapt to the new lenses. After this time, patients will be able to enjoy their newly improved vision for a lifetime.