Phakic IOLs (intraocular lenses) are an alternative to laser refractive surgery for correcting moderate to severe visual defect. Phakic IOLs are clear implantable lenses that are surgically placed either between the cornea and the iris or just behind the iris, without removing your natural lens.
This technique preserves the natural accommodation of the eye.
Two types of phakic implant are currently available:
- Phakic anterior chamber lens: this is when the lens in implanted above the iris. It can be either:
- Angle-supported: when the handles of the implant (the curved part of the implant that allows securing it) are placed in the angle between the iris and the cornea.
- Iris-supported: when the handles of the implant are attached to the iris. This is the case of Artisan and Artiflex lenses witch are the best out of phakic IOLs.
- The Artisan IOL is a rigid made of PMMA (polymethylmethacrylate) witch is placed behind your cornea and above your iris through an incision of 5 to 6 mm.
- The Artiflex IOL is a flexible lens made of silicone. The lens is inserted into the eye through a small incision (3mm).
- Phakic posterior chamber lens: this is when a thin lens is implanted behind the iris (between the iris and the natural crystalline lens.)
The phakic lenses intervention is completely painless, lasts between 10 to 15 minutes and it is highly secure and reversible. This procedure does not alter the corneal structure of the eye and ensures rapid visual recovery.
To operate both eyes, an interval of one week is required. To compensate for the visual difference between the two eyes during this interval, the patient can wear a contact lens.