Refractive Lens

Refractive Lens Exchange
Also Known as Clear Lens Exchange

Also Known as Presbyopic Correcting IOL Exchange

Advancements in cataract surgery have led to new technology with lens replacement surgery designed to correct refractive error. As a result Refractive Lens Exchange is very similar to cataract surgery, but has multiple benefits that extend beyond. This is a surgical procedure intended to reduce or eliminate the need for glasses or contacts for people over the age of 40, who may be experiencing new visual challenges. Refractive Lens Exchange also commonly called RLE, can be used to correct presbyopia, nearsightedness or farsightedness.

For individuals over 40 who are considering refractive surgery to decrease dependence on glasses and contact lenses, Refractive Lens Exchange (RLE) is an excellent option worthy of serious consideration.  Like cataract surgery, this procedure involves removing the natural lens of the eye and replacing it with an intraocular lens (IOL) implant, a multifocal IOL implant or an accommodating IOL. Please consult directly with our doctors at Hines Sight in Denver Colorado to determine what IOL is right for you and your unique vision.

The Refractive Lens Exchange Surgery
The natural lens inside the eye is removed and replaced with an artificial implant, called an intraocular lens, in order to correct your farsightedness or nearsightedness. The power of this intraocular lens is calculated. There are occasions where LASIK in Denver and/or PRK are needed after the Refractive Lens Exchange in order to fine-tune and better correct the vision.

The main difference between standard cataract surgery and clear lens extraction is that cataract surgery is primarily performed to remove a patient's cataract that is obscuring and clouding their vision, while refractive clear lens extraction is performed to reduce a person's dependence on glasses or contact lenses.  Clear lens extraction can be combined with Laser Vision Correction to treat astigmatism.  People who have clear lens extraction now, will not need cataract surgery in the future.

The Refractive Lens Exchange procedure is performed on an outpatient basis.  Only one eye will be treated at a time.  After the eye is completely numbed with topical or local anesthesia, the eye's natural lens will be gently vacuumed out through a tiny incision, about one eighth of an inch wide.

Next, the new intraocular lens will be folded and inserted through the same micro-incision.  It will then be unfolded and placed into the "capsular bag" that originally surrounded the natural lens.  The incision is "self-sealing" and usually requires no stitches.  It remains tightly closed by the natural outward pressure within the eye.  This type of incision heals fast and provides a much more comfortable recuperation.

Other types of refractive surgery, such as lasik laser vision correction, accomplish good vision by changing the shape of your cornea.  Unlike these other refractive procedures that change the shape of the cornea, Refractive Lens Exchange (RLE) corrects vision by removing the natural lens in the eye and replacing it with a new artificial lens of a different focusing power. This is exactly the same process used during cataract surgery.  Cataract surgery is currently one of the top procedures reimbursed by Medicare and millions of cataracts are removed every year.

Refractive Lens Exchange Advantages

  • Very fast recovery
  • Predictability of outcome
  • Excellent quality of vision

Page Topics Include: Clear Lens Extraction, Refractive Lens Exchange, Presbyopic Correcting IOL Exchange, CLE surgical process, vision correction options for 40 years or older, Denver Lens Implants. 

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2480 South Downing Street
Suite G-30
Denver, Colorado 80210
Phone: 1-303-777-3277
Toll Free: 1-800-626-2156
Fax: 1-303-698-9713

"I just wanted to take a moment to write to you and let you know how happy I am with my "new" eyes. I really can't even begin to tell you how much I love being able to see again without contacts, it is so wonderful!"

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