This is a plastic lens that is placed inside the eye during cataract surgery and is sometimes called an IOL (intraocular lens).  With cataract surgery, the natural lens inside the eye has become cloudy and needs to be removed. If a new lens is not put back in the eye, the vision will remain blurry and be completely out of focus.  Before the invention of modern intraocular lenses, patients with no lenses (aphakia) had to wear “coke bottle” glasses just to see normally after their cataracts were removed.  Modern implants are made of a flexible acrylic plastic that allows them to fold up very small like a burrito. This allows them to be injected into the eye through a very small incision through the cornea. Once inside the eye, the intraocular lens opens up like a blossoming flower into its normal shape.  Newer implant technology has improved refractive outcomes. For example, the Toric lens can now fix astigmatism and the Restor lens has a fresnel lens bifocal, which can help with near vision and decrease the need for reading glasses.

Dr. Timothy Root is a practicing ophthalmologist and cataract surgeon in Daytona Beach, Florida. His books, video lectures, and training resources can be found at:


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