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What Is an Intraocular Lens?

Understanding What Happens During Cataract Surgery

An intraocular lens (IOL) is an artificial lens that is implanted inside the eye during cataract surgery. Cataracts occur when the natural lens of the eye becomes cloudy, leading to blurry vision. During cataract surgery, the cloudy lens is removed, and an IOL is inserted to replace it. The IOL serves to restore clear vision and focus light onto the retina.

IOLs are made from biocompatible materials, such as silicone or acrylic, and they come in different designs and focusing abilities. Some IOLs are monofocal, meaning they provide clear vision at a single distance, usually for distance vision. Other types of IOLs, called multifocal or accommodating IOLs, are designed to provide clear vision at different distances, reducing the need for glasses or contact lenses for both near and distance vision. Your cataract surgeon will discuss the most suitable IOL options based on your eye health, lifestyle, and visual needs.


Can You Get LASIK After Cataract Surgery?

LASIK surgery is typically not performed on eyes that already have an intraocular lens. LASIK corrects refractive errors by reshaping the cornea, the clear front surface of the eye. In eyes that have undergone cataract surgery with an IOL, the natural lens has been replaced with the artificial IOL, so there is no corneal tissue to reshape. Therefore, LASIK is not typically performed on eyes that have already undergone cataract surgery with IOL implantation.

However, it’s worth noting that in some cases, LASIK may be performed before cataract surgery if a person has both cataracts and refractive errors. In such cases, the LASIK procedure is done to correct the refractive errors before the cataract surgery, and then an IOL is implanted during the cataract surgery to restore clear vision. This approach can help reduce the dependency on glasses or contact lenses after cataract surgery.

It’s important to consult with an experienced eye surgeon who can evaluate your specific situation and recommend the most appropriate treatment options for your vision correction needs. We are happy to answer your questions regarding cataract surgery, LASIK, and the best options for you.


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Related Articles:
Knowing the Signs of Cataracts
LASIK vs. Traditional Cataract Surgery
How Do Cataracts and Cataract Surgery Affect LASIK?