Phakic lenses are produced in silicone or Collamer that are useful to correct visual defects such as nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism, even of a high degree (20-25 diopters).
They are positioned both in the anterior chamber (with an angular or iris support) and in the posterior chamber, in contiguity with the natural lens of the eye, which is the crystalline lens and have the function of modifying the path of the light rays and focusing them on the retina.
The positioning involves preparation for the operation. It involves the execution of a small hole in the iris (laser iridectomy), which has the aim of ensuring correct circulation of the aqueous humor after positioning the phakic lens. It is a practically painless intervention, even in the post-operative phase.
When the visual defect occurs bilaterally, it is possible to intervene first on one eye and then on the other after a couple of days. Visual acuity recovery takes place in no time.
The type of implanted lens is essential for determining the quality of vision. This is why the use of Visian ICL produced by STAAR Surgical (USA) guarantees the best possible results, allowing the patient to see clearly, with greater depth and field of view.
These are Collamer lenses, unique in their kind. In fact, ICL indicates Implantable Collamer Lens. The particularity of the Collamer material lies in its greater biocompatibility with respect to the silicone lenses and the possibility of being folded, therefore requiring a smaller incision during the surgical procedure than all other lens models.
Phakic Lenses to Eliminate Visual Defects
Phakic lenses are implanted inside the eye and have the function of eliminating the visual defect. This type of lens is introduced into the eyeball by making a small opening and goes to position itself in that virtual space that is behind the iris and in front of the lens. This lens is inserted in this small space, which has the appearance of a contact lens but unlike the latter, instead of being placed on the corneal surface, the surgeon inserts the special contact lens inside the eye. It is invisible to the outside, stable, and has the power that interests us to correct the patient’s visual defect. It is not a lens that must be removed in the evening, not necessary to carry out maintenance and does not require cleaning but it is a lens made to remain inside the eye throughout one’s life.
All this does not mean that one day it cannot be removed. If cataract or any type of eye problem comes, the lens can be removed, so it is a reversible kind of surgery. We do not touch the cornea unlike in laser, therefore we do not take away any tissue. We do not touch the lens or the vitreous. The eye remains unchanged with no problems with corneal thinning and eye pressure, which often happens after surgery or any changes in the curvature of the cornea. We do not remove the lens and this is a very important aspect because it is risky to remove the transparent lens in a myopic eye of a young patient. The risks of retinal detachment are concrete, therefore the implantation of a phakic lens is very conservative.
These lenses also have filters for ultraviolet rays, therefore they preserve the lens and the retina. They are lenses that mimic the use of filtered sunglasses, so it is like having to wear them all day long.
The posterior chamber phakic lenses (or implantable Collamer lens) has a million implants on their shoulders. In almost 25 years, none of these lenses have ever been explanted because of the lens itself and this means that it is an extremely safe kind of lens. The material of which it is made starts from porcine collagen, a material that has been 100% biocompatible since the first implant.
The shape that these lenses have assumed has evolved over time and therefore they have become more compatible with the shape of the eye. The company has developed an improvement in shape; the experience is unmatched and no other company in the world was able to have these results of implanting in a million eyes with 100% biocompatible material.
The market is moving in this direction in other countries, so we, in Italy, are also going in the direction of conservative refractive surgery for the cornea, the crystalline lens, and the whole eye.
After the posterior chamber phakic lens implantation, the patient is under rehabilitation in a maximum of 24-36 hours. It is a pain-free surgery, the quality of vision is immediately good the next day and continues to grow in the following days.
Usually, an implant is made from one eye and then the following week, the implant is made on the other. Bilateral implants can be made in selected cases.
Some patients have reported temporary halos around lights at night. This scenario is explained well to the patient because otherwise he or she might be surprised or scared. These halos are destined to be eliminated by the human brain with a neuro-adaptation mechanism and the time varies from three to four weeks. After two months, 90% of patients no longer see them definitively. This is the only significant side effect of this lens, apart from seeing very well, never having ailments and to go back to the ophthalmologist.
The ICL phakic lens is a small prosthesis, a small lens that vaguely resembles a contact lens, which is inserted inside the eye at its nodal point, which means that it is where the light rays undergo the least deformation hence, the most physiological point where to insert a lens inside the ocular dioptric system.
This lens is inserted behind the iris and in front of the lens, in this small virtual space that usually houses the human lens; it is positioned in front of this and thanks to the anatomical shape of the lens it does not touch the lens, therefore it avoids metabolic damage and therefore prevents the formation of cataracts induced by the implantation of phakic lenses.
The ICL phakic lens has undergone an evolution that starts in 1989, when it was invented by the Russians and the patent of the material with which it is built was then bought by an American company; the material is called Collamer and is based on collagen, copolymerized with a secret formula.
This material was right from the first shot, that is, it is 100% biocompatible: no lens has ever been removed due to the lens itself, no lens has ever created metabolism problems or intolerance problems.
The evolution was due to the fact that at the beginning, it had a poorly biocompatible shape, therefore the doctors, the specialists had not yet guessed which shape the lens should have; the latter then evolved and we can say that for at least fifteen years it has had an almost perfect shape, therefore with a compatibility of a 100%.
The anatomy of the lens allows you not to touch vital parts of the eye and its ultra-structurality, its composition does not create any type of inflammatory reaction and any type of trauma to the microstructures that are inside the eye.
Hence, this lens opens up a world of correcting vision defects in young patients: all patients who want to remove a vision defect, if they have enough space inside the eye to accommodate this lens, they can have the implant and it can correct the vision defect they are carrying; therefore myopia, astigmatism and hyperopia can be corrected very brilliantly.
The results are exceptional and the lens gives an immediate visual recovery, because the next day the patient sees and has no pain, so the recovery is absolutely fast; postoperative pain is zero and has the enormous advantage, compared to laser therapies for correcting vision defects, of being reversible, so we give a very high quality product that is reversible, which means that the day you have to do a any other eye surgery or any eye diagnosis, the lens does not pose any problems, which the opposite happens after a laser surgery.
So, the ICL phakic lens is gradually gaining momentum: we have now reached 1 million implants worldwide and every year the sale, the diffusion of this lens grows.
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We recall the strengths:
- NO DRY EYE
- NO ABERRATIONS FOR FLAT CORNEA
- HD VISION
- IMMEDIATE RECOVERY
- DOES NOT PRECLUDE ANY DIAGNOSTIC-THERAPEUTIC PROCEDURE IN THE FUTURE
- NO THIN CORNEA = NO IOL CALCULATION PROBLEM
- NO DECREASED SENSITIVITY CONTRAST
- REVERSIBLE = CHANGEABLE = IMPROVABLE
- NO CHANGE IN CORNEAL CURVATURE, THEREFORE NO PROBLEM OF CALCULATION OF THE IOL LENS FOR FUTURE CATARACT INTERVENTION
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