Crystalens is an accommodating intraocular lens that, unlike a standard IOL, can treat both a person’s cataracts and presbyopia—loss of near and intermediate vision. You probably noticed in your forties that you started to lose some of your up-close vision and had to start wearing reading glasses. Crystalens not only treats your cataracts (a clouding or hardening of your lens), but can also reduce or eliminate your dependence on glasses. It does so by recreating accommodation similar to your eye’s natural lens. The unique Crystalens can reduce or eliminate glasses for most activities, including: reading a book, working on the computer, and driving a car.
Crystalens was modeled after the human eye. Like the natural lens, it uses the eye muscle to flex and accommodate in order to focus on objects in the environment at all distances. Crystalens dynamically adjusts to your visual needs.
Crystalens is designed to allow the optic, or the central circular part of the lens that you see through, to move back and forth as you constantly change focus on images around you. Crystalens flexes as you focus your vision.
- The first and only FDA-approved accommodating intraocular lens
- The only FDA-approved intraocular lens that uses the natural focusing ability of the eye
- The only FDA-approved presbyopia correcting IOL for cataract patients that provides a single focal point throughout a continuous range of vision
Few patients with Crystalens have experienced problems with glare, halos and night vision. Crystalens focuses only one image to the back of the eye, unlike a multifocal lens that projects multiple images, requiring your brain to “adjust” to the differences.
The effectiveness of Crystalens was proven in clinical trials:
- Significantly more patients implanted with a Crystalens (88.4%) could see better at all distances than patients implanted with a standard IOL (35.9%).
- Most patients have continued to report excellent vision 7 years after implantation with Crystalens. More than 100,000 Crystalens implants have been implanted worldwide, and that number is growing daily.
Crystalens accommodates like the natural lens. After implantation of Crystalens, most patients will see brighter and clearer from distance, intermediate to near like they did when they were younger.
Crystalens was the first presbyopia correcting IOL introduced into the United States market and is currently the only FDA-approved accommodating IOL. Crystalens addresses the limitations of standard monofocal IOLs and multifocal IOLs by providing the following advantages to patients:
- Provides a Broad Range of Vision: Crystalens moves and changes shape using the eye’s natural focusing mechanism, instead of remaining fixed and stationary within the eye. This movement, or accommodation, allows the eye to focus on objects across a broad range of distances to reduce or eliminate dependence on glasses. In particular, this accommodation provides significant advantages in addressing intermediate vision.
- Maintains Clarity of Vision: Unlike multifocal lenses, Crystalens directs all available light received by the eye to a single focal point, comparable to that of a healthy natural lens.
- Patient Adjustment Not Required: Crystalens produces a single image consistent with normal vision, meaning patients do not need to neuroadapt to viewing multiple images. Patients also do not need to tolerate or adjust to high levels of halos and glare often associated with multifocal IOLs.
The Crystalens® procedure
Cataract surgery is one of the most commonly performed surgeries in the world. Crystalens is implanted during standard outpatient cataract surgery.
In the United States, on average over 8,000 cataract procedures are performed a day. The cataract procedure is quick, simple and allows for relatively fast healing. This safe and painless procedure typically starts with eye-numbing drops and a micro-seal being made at the edge of the cornea. The natural lens is gently washed away and Crystalens is implanted. Crystalens can be implanted quickly and without sensation. Most patients return for a follow-up visit with the physician the day after surgery.
The recovery period is usually short. Most patients are able to pursue normal activities almost immediately after surgery. Patients usually have a follow-up visit scheduled with the surgeon to evaluate the patient’s recovery. (Discuss with your doctor beforehand what to expect before, during, and after the procedure in terms of eye drops and office visits.)
If you are like most patients who have Crystalens, you can expect to see sharper images than you have seen in years.
Potential Complications: Implantation of Crystalens is a surgical procedure. All surgical procedures entail some risk. The risks of implantation with the Crystalens are generally the same potential risks that exist for implanting all intraocular lenses. Because the Crystalens has a smaller optic compared to the standard IOL, glare and other visual disturbances may occur under certain lighting conditions, including at night when the pupil widely dilates. Only your surgeon can determine if Crystalens is right for you and explain the applicable risk of complications.
Your doctor will perform a thorough examination and fully inform you of any increased risk of complications. Because the Crystalens only absorbs a portion of ultraviolet light, you should wear sunglasses with UV400 protection when out in daylight.