Each and every corner of the healthcare industry is, ultimately, a multi-billion dollar industry. With that comes a plethora of different treatments and brands, each marketed with much fervor to the health care providers who dole out treatment to patients.
Intraocular lens implants, which are used as a form of replacement following cataract surgery, have been in wide use in the U.S. since 1977. There are more than 100 different brands of these permanent lens implants.
Single-Focus and Multifocal Lens Implants
The most widely used form of cataract lens replacement is of a single-lens type. These do not allow for the person receiving them to bring objects at different distances into focus. Typically, surgeons imp, abt lens sets with good distance vision, and the patient then uses reading glasses for close-up distance needs. There is also the option of correcting just one eye for distance vision and the other for near vision, creating a mismatched lens replacement solution known as “monovision.”
The Food and Drug Administration approved the first multifocal cataract lens implant in the early 2000s. This allows the patient to adjust to both near and distance vision. Still, patients receiving these lenses sometimes still need eyeglasses, which can be prescribed, at the earliest, three weeks after the date of cataract surgery.
Accommodating Lens Implants
There is yet another kind of cataract lens implant, known as “accommodating.” The first of these was approved by the FDA in 2003, manufactured by a company called Crystalens. This lens pivots on a tiny hinge and allow patients to adjust themselves for near or distant vision.
On average, 8,000 cataract surgeries are performed in the U.S. each day. Crystalens, with help from celebrity spokesperson Florence Henderson, continues to tout itself on some fronts. Marketing materials proclaim, proudly, that it is the first and only FDA-approved accommodating lens, the only one that uses the natural focusing ability of the eye, and so on.
U.S. News & World Report – Health: Cataract: Lens Replacement, Retrieved June 7, 2011 from http://health.usnews.com/usnews/health/eye_vision/cataract/cat.treat.lens.htm
CrystalLens – The Crystallens Procedure, Retrieved June 7, 2011 from http://www.crystalens.com/us/TheCrystalensProcedure.aspx