We tend to talk a lot about LASIK, both around the office and here on the blog. But, of course, not every patient is a good candidate for LASIK. Many factors come into play, including physical traits like corneal thickness and dry eye, as well as lifestyle and age. No two patients are alike, which means there is no one-size-fits-all vision solution. That’s why Dr. Solomon offers alternative options for vision correction–to allow as many patients as possible to experience the freedom of clear vision without glasses or contacts! Below, we’ll discuss two alternatives to LASIK offered by Dr. Solomon: Implantable Contact Lenses, and Refractive Lens Exchange.
Implantable Contact Lens (ICL)
When we see patients who are not ideal LASIK candidates, it’s often due to thin corneas, history of dry eye, or extreme nearsightedness. For these patients, Dr. Solomon often recommends Implantable Contact Lenses, or ICL.
In a quick and painless outpatient procedure, Dr. Solomon can insert an ICL that will work with your natural lens to correct nearsightedness and allow for the possibility of life without glasses or standard contact lenses. In fact, many patients see 20/20 or better after receiving their ICL!
Once implanted, the lens cannot be seen or felt, and it cannot dry out or get dirty like a standard contact lens. And, while these lenses are designed to be kept permanently, patients can have added peace of mind knowing that an ICL can be removed if necessary.
Refractive Lens Exchange (RLE)
RLE is unique in that, thanks to the many lens options available, it can provide the option to correct your near vision, distance vision, or both. What’s more, all of these options are also available to patients with astigmatism. This makes RLE an ideal solution for patients who have begun to develop presbyopia—the natural loss of near vision that often starts in our 40s. In addition, patients who have extreme farsightedness may be able to benefit from RLE even when LASIK is not an option.
The procedure for RLE (sometimes called Clear Lens Exchange) is very similar to cataract surgery. In an outpatient procedure lasting only about 15 minutes, Dr. Solomon will remove the natural lens and replace it with an artificial lens, called an IOL. The procedure typically does not require stitches, and the recovery is quick—most patients are back to their normal routine in a day or two.
Perhaps the most exciting thing about RLE? Because the procedure removes your eye’s natural lens, you will never develop cataracts! That means the clear vision you experience after your RLE procedure is your new, improved vision for life!
The Bottom Line
With so many exciting possibilities and cutting-edge technology that’s improving all the time, Dr. Solomon can offer a vision solution for just about everybody. But there’s only one way to know for sure which procedure is going to be the best answer for you: contact us to schedule a consultation!