Cataract surgery with your ophthalmologist at CNY Eye Physicians & Surgeons involves removing the cataract and replacing it with a lens implant so that the eye can properly focus. That implant is custom selected for you based upon the length and shape of your eye. Laser, ultrasound and sophisticated computer formulas help us to target a specific focus distance for your lens implant.
However, at CNY Eye Physicians & Surgeons, we need your guidance to help us choose the focus distance you will find to be the most comfortable.
An intraocular lens, or IOL, is an artificial lens used to replace your cloudy natural lens. Below are the most common types of IOLs currently available and what each is designed to do for your vision.
- Have a single focal point for clear vision
- Most patients will still require glasses for some tasks
- “Blended vision” or monovision can be achieved by using a different focal point in each eye
Astigmatism Correcting Lenses (Toric)
These are specifically designed for patients with astigmatism and otherwise function similarly to monofocal lens implants; they may reduce and in some cases eliminate dependence on glasses at the focus range chosen.
Astigmatism is a common condition usually caused by an irregularly shaped cornea or lens. This warps or distorts light rays entering your eye, making it difficult for your lens to properly focus the image.
Multifocal and Accommodating Lenses
Multifocal lenses are designed to provide a broader range of clear vision. These work more like a pair of bifocals or progressive add lenses. Incoming light is split approximately 50% to distance and 50% to near. They may offer a greater degree of independence from glasses for most distance and near tasks. However this comes with a cost: a reduction of image quality. There is significantly increased risk of glare, halos and other visual artifacts around lights, particularly at night, or increased light scatter from the sun which can be bothersome to some people.
Accommodating lens implants can allow some individuals to focus at variable distances. The lens implant is designed to shift its position in the eye depending on your focusing effort. The degree to which this works varies considerable from person to person.
Conventional Cataract Surgery vs. Laser Assisted Cataract Surgery
Standard (conventional cataract surgery) is the most common method of cataract surgery. The surgeon makes a small incision in the front of the eye and uses a non-laser instrument (phacoemulsifier) to create sound waves (ultrasound) that break up the cataract into small fragments. This instrument is then used to suction out the cataract fragments. However another technique uses the femtosecond laser and a computer to perform one or more steps of the cataract operation.