How Do I Choose an Intraocular Lens Before Cataract Surgery?

Preparing to have cataract surgery is an exciting time! You may think it’s intimidating since you need to take steps before having it.

Before you can have cataract surgery, you and your eye doctor will choose an intraocular lens. Intraocular lenses or IOLs are responsible for giving you crisp eyesight again after cataract surgery. 

There is a wide selection of IOLs available, and you and your eye doctor will work together to find the best one for you. Keep reading to learn more about choosing an IOL before cataract surgery!

What Happens During Cataract Surgery?

Cataracts develop as proteins in your natural lens break down and clump together. Eventually, enough proteins begin to block light from reaching your retina.

If you’re preparing for cataract surgery, your cataracts have developed to this point. Once they get thick enough to block light in your eye, they can interfere with going about your daily routine.

Cataract surgery removes and replaces your cataract-afflicted natural lens. It begins with your surgeon creating a small incision in the outer layer of your eye called the cornea.

This corneal incision gives them access to your natural lens. The natural lens sits directly behind your cornea. Then, your cataract surgeon will gently break your lens into small pieces.

Breaking the lens into smaller pieces makes it easier to remove, which your surgeon does by using gentle suction. After that, they insert your IOL and send you home to rest.

What is an IOL?

Intraocular lenses or IOLs are artificial lenses used in cataract surgery. When inserted, they help your cornea focus light on your retina, giving you clear, focused eyesight.

IOLs are permanent lenses that sit behind your cornea for the rest of your life, and they cannot form cataracts. They take over the job that your natural lens was doing and give you your ability to see clearly back.

They come in a wide variety of styles. The most fundamental differences are between a monofocal or standard IOL and a premium or multifocal IOL.

Monofocal IOLs

Monofocal IOLs focus light entering your eye at one distance. Usually, you correct your distance vision with a monofocal IOL, which would mean you still need to use glasses for up-close tasks.

Premium IOLs

Premium IOLs give you many more vision options and capabilities. Depending on the premium IOL you choose for cataract surgery, you may never need glasses again.

Regardless of the premium lens you get, you will need to rely on glasses very little. In most cases, with a premium IOL, you only need glasses to read the fine text on a prescription bottle or food label.

Besides that, premium IOLs give you true visual freedom. They can simplify your life by ending your need to constantly pull glasses out for different tasks or to see clearly over varying distances.

Toric IOLs

There are also IOLs that correct astigmatism. Toric model IOLs can focus light that gets scattered by your irregularly shaped cornea.

By correcting this light, toric model IOLs get rid of your astigmatism. You can end your need for glasses by getting rid of your cataracts and astigmatism in one procedure.

Ask your eye doctor about correcting your astigmatism. If the IOL you choose has a toric model, they can correct it during cataract surgery.

Your eye doctor will help you determine the best IOL for your situation. Schedule an appointment at Ginsberg Eye in Naples, FL, to see if it’s time to get your vision back!