The Visian Implantable Collamer Lens [ICL] is a solution for patients with thick glasses or high amounts of nearsightedness. For the first time, the Visian ICL offers freedom from the hassles of contacts and eyeglasses to those who would otherwise not be a refractive surgery candidate for LASIK or PRK.
The Visian Implantable Contact Lens (ICL) is a unique wafer-thin, highly flexible lens made of bio-collagen. The ICL is placed inside the eye behind the iris [colored part of the eye] but in front of the natural lens making it invisible. It’s called a phakic [Latin for Lens] lens since the natural crystalline lens is not removed. It received FDA approval in 2004, and since then 700,000 ICLs have been implanted world-wide.
ICL surgery has already overtaken LASIK or PRK for some patients with high myopia due to several reasons including:
Enjoy the freedom of not worrying about daily contact lens maintenance and problems that can occur from everyday activities such as swimming. There is also the potential to save $18,000 over 20 years due to recurring costs of contacts, solutions, back-up glasses, vision exams, and artificial tears for dry eyes, a common condition in Colorado Springs.
The Visian is an affordable alternative to a lifetime of wearing contacts. The cost of the Visian ICL in Colorado Springs starts at $2700 per eye.
ICL surgery has a long track record of safety and high patient satisfaction. The ICL was first developed in 1992 and reach worldwide use from 2005 onwards. An FDA study in 2005 showed there was a 0.6% dissatisfaction rate. A follow-up study found 99% of patients were very satisfied and would recommend the procedure. In comparison to LASIK, the quality of ICL vision is superior. Nighttime vision is superb with significantly fewer halos due to less induced aberrations and a larger optical zone.
The Visian ICL is also known as the “high myopia lens” since it’s capable of correcting individuals with thick glasses or high amounts of near-sightedness beyond the range of LASIK. Astigmatism can also be treated at the time of surgery by using corneal astigmatic incisions. In some cases of high refractive errors and astigmatism, two procedures (eg LASIK + ICL) can be combined if necessary.
Yes! Since 2006 the US Military eye surgeons have implanted 10,000 Visian ICLs. This is a testament to how the lens functions in the harshest conditions. The Visian ICL is perfect for an active Colorado Springs lifestyle.
An important benefit of the ICL is that it provides future treatment flexibility. Inevitably, vision changes with age and almost everyone will need cataract surgery. Because the Visian ICL is reversible and maintains natural eye anatomy, measurements required for cataract surgery are more precise. This ensures a positive cataract surgery outcome in the future.
The recovery for the Visian ICL is quick due to the small size of the opening needed to implant the lens. There is usually minimal discomfort, and many times you can go back to work within 1-2 days. You’ll be back to enjoying all of Colorado Springs’ many activities in a few days.
Unfortunately, the ICL cannot correct presbyopia. A prerequisite for ICL surgery is that implantation takes place before the onset of presbyopia. This ensures there is enough space in the eye so that the ICL can be safely positioned. A great way to correct presbyopia is refractive lens exchange with the use of a premium intraocular lens [Symfony IOL]
The best results are expected for the ages between 18 and 45 years.
The “lifetime” of the ICL collagen lens is estimated to be around 90 years. It’s guaranteed for your lifetime.
Stop wearing soft contact lenses one week before and hard contacts three weeks before the first eye examination. Between the exam and surgery, contact lenses can be worn until three days before surgery.
The implantation takes about 7 to 10 minutes per eye. Due to the necessary preparations, your stay in the OR is about 60 minutes. Both eyes are operated on the same day. The Steps of the surgery are:
|Sharp, Clear vision||Yes1||Yes||Yes|
|20-30 minute procedure||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Contributes to dry eye syndrome||No, does not induce
dry eye syndrome2
|Long term history||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Removable or reversible||Yes, Removable||No, Not Reversible||No, Not Reversible|
|Biocompatible lens||Yes||NA, Laser based||NA, Laser based|
|Nearsightedness||Moderate to severe||Mild to moderate||Mild to moderate|
Feel free to contact Dr. Anderson with any questions about the Visian ICL. Refractive surgical procedures are rapidly evolving with several new options available for vision correction other than LASIK. Dr. Anderson currently does not perform ICL surgery but recommends Dr. Chang at Skyline Vision for ICL surgery.