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What Are My IOL Options?

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One of the most important parts when getting ready for cataract surgery is choosing an IOL. An IOL, short for an intraocular lens, is a small artificial lens that replaces your natural lens.

Cataract surgery requires the removal of the natural lens, so to see, a new one must replace it.

There are actually several variations of IOLs, all with different advantages and disadvantages. This makes cataract surgery a uniquely customizable experience.

Certain premium IOLs can even fix refractive errors you’ve had your whole life. This means that you may not need to wear glasses or contacts anymore! Keep reading for a rundown on some of your IOL options!

Monofocal IOLs

To gain perspective on what makes premium IOLs so great, it’s important to know what the standard option is. Monofocal IOLs are the most budget-friendly option for IOLs.

They cost the least, but only offer vision at a single specified distance. This means that after cataract surgery, even if you did not need glasses before, you would after.

The glasses would need to be for the opposite distance that your monofocal IOLs would be set for.

There is a method to bypass this problem called monovision. Monovision uses one monofocal set to distance vision set in one eye. The other eye has a monofocal that is set for near vision.

Your brain can “switch” between dominant eyes. This gives you working vision at both distances.

However, some people have difficulty getting used to this method. Premium IOLs are still generally considered to be the best option.

Multifocal IOLs

Monofocal IOLs only correct for one distance. Multifocal IOLs correct for both far and near distances.

They work a lot like bifocals. Your eye looks through certain ringlike “zones” that bend the light differently.

Accommodating IOLs

Like multifocal IOLs, accommodating IOLs can fix nearsightedness and farsightedness. This allows you to achieve visual independence.

Accommodating IOLs work quite differently from their multifocal counterpart. Instead of the function coming from the lens, the IOL actually moves inside of the eye.

This uses the contracting muscles that controlled the lens. In the end, you have a smoother experience.

Toric IOLs

Neither multifocal or accommodating IOLs can correct for astigmatism. Toric IOLs are specifically designed to do just that.

Toric IOLs need to be tailor-made to your eyes to match up with the unique discrepancies in your cornea.

Aspheric IOLs

Another option that you can go with for your IOLs is to get aspheric IOLs. These IOLs are not perfectly round like other IOLs.

They are instead shaped more like your natural lens. This reduces the frequency of certain vision problems called aberrations.

Wondering what your best IOL option is? Talk to your eye doctor and find out their recommendation for you!

The best time to do this is during a cataract screening. During this screening, you can go over what to expect during cataract surgery as well.

Thinking it’s time for cataract surgery? Schedule a cataract screening at Georgia Eye Associates in Atlanta, GA now! Aren’t you tired of seeing the world through your cloudy lens?

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