What is Implantable Collamer Lens (ICL) Surgery

by Apr 29, 2024

Implantable Collamer Lens (ICL) surgery is a refractive procedure designed to correct vision problems such as myopia, hyperopia, and astigmatism in individuals who are not suitable candidates for LASIK or other corneal refractive surgeries. This advanced surgical technique involves implanting a thin, biocompatible collamer lens inside the eye to modify the eye’s refractive power and improve visual acuity. Exploring the key aspects of ICL surgery, including candidacy criteria, procedure details, benefits, and potential risks, is essential to gaining insight into this alternative vision correction option.


Candidacy Assessment

Refractive Error: ICL surgery is typically recommended for individuals with moderate to high degrees of myopia, hyperopia, or astigmatism that fall outside the treatable range of LASIK or PRK procedures.


Corneal Thickness: Candidates for ICL surgery must have adequate corneal thickness, as this procedure does not involve altering the corneal surface like traditional laser eye surgeries.


Procedure Overview

Preoperative Evaluation: Before ICL surgery, a comprehensive eye examination is conducted to assess the eye’s health, refractive error, pupil size, and other factors essential for determining the optimal ICL size and power.


Surgical Implantation: During ICL surgery, a micro-incision is made in the cornea, and the collapsible ICL lens is inserted behind the iris and in front of the eye’s natural lens to correct the refractive error. The lens unfolds and positions itself within the eye for vision correction.


Benefits of ICL Surgery

High Refractive Correction: ICL implants can address a wide range of refractive errors, offering precise and customizable vision correction outcomes that can significantly reduce or eliminate the need for glasses or contact lenses.


Preservation of Corneal Integrity: Unlike corneal refractive surgeries that reshape the cornea, ICL surgery preserves the corneal structure and avoids altering its curvature, making it a suitable option for individuals with thin or irregular corneas.


Postoperative Care

Recovery Period: Following ICL surgery, patients may experience mild discomfort, dryness, or fluctuations in vision during the initial healing phase, which typically resolves within a few days to weeks.


Regular Follow-ups: Routine postoperative examinations are essential to monitor the eye’s healing progress, assess visual acuity, and address any potential complications or adjustments needed for optimal vision outcomes.


Potential Risks and Considerations

Risk of Infection: As with any surgical procedure, there is a minimal risk of infection following ICL surgery. Patients must adhere to prescribed eye drops, hygiene practices, and postoperative care instructions to minimize infection risk.


Glare or Halos: Some individuals may experience temporary visual disturbances, such as glare, halos around lights, or night vision issues post-ICL surgery, which usually diminish as the eye adjusts to the implanted lens.


Long-Term Outcomes

Stable Vision Correction: ICL implants offer long-lasting vision correction outcomes, with many patients experiencing stable and improved visual acuity for years after the procedure.


Enhanced Quality of Life: Improved clarity of vision, reduced dependence on corrective eyewear, and enhanced visual comfort contribute to an improved quality of life for individuals who undergo successful ICL surgery.


How to Decide if implantable Collamer Lens (ICL) Surgery is Right for You

When deciding on a refractive surgery option, it is imperative to discuss all options with your doctor and evaluate the benefits of each. ICL surgery is not the best option for everyone, but should be considered heavily if it is recommended by your doctor.


Dr. Nathan Abraham and the staff of the Abraham Eye Center specialize in cataract surgery, LASIK, PRK, and various corneal surgeries.  Call our ophthalmologist in Valencia, CA today at 661-977-7377 or schedule an appointment online if you are interested in learning more about implantable collamer lens (ICL) surgery.  Our eye doctor provides only the highest quality eye care and surgical services amongst eye doctors in the Valencia California area.

Request Appointment

You can schedule your next appointment with us online!

Connect With Us

Let’s continue the conversation over on your social network of choice.