The Implantable contact lens procedure is typically carried out using a local anaesthetic and normally takes around 30 minutes to complete. Your surgeon will only carry out the procedure on one eye at a time, normally waiting at least a week before considering treating the other eye.
The Implantable Contact Lens Procedure:
- The surgeon will assess your general suitability for implantable contact lenses.
- Your anterior chamber angle is assessed to check that it is deep enough to accommodate your implantable contact lens.
- The power of the Implantable contact lens is determined taking into account your current prescription and the physiology of your eye. A custom made implantable contact lens is then made in the lab in about 3-4 weeks.
- Once your implantable contact lens has returned from the lab the surgery can commence:
- Your eyelids are held open using a special instrument to ensure you do not blink.
- A local anaesthetic by means of injection is used to numb the eye. Antibiotic drops are also instilled before the surgery starts to prevent the risk of infection.
- A small incision is made in the side of the cornea through which the small implantable contact lens is placed. The ICL is very small and flexible and therefore can be placed through a very small incision. The incision is sometimes so small that it is self-healing and does not require stitches.
- The whole procedure typically takes about 30 minutes.
- Antibiotics are instilled following the surgery to prevent the risk of infection.
- Once your surgeon is happy that your eye is healing as it should the procedure will then be repeated on the other eye.
Implantable Contact Lenses Are Placed in One of 2 Positions in The Eye:
- Attached to the iris: (coloured part of the eye): This method generally requires a larger incision and therefore stitches are often required. The implantable contact lens can sometimes be seen if you look very closely at the eye.
- Inserted behind the iris and in front of the lens: This ICL is generally folded into a smaller lens and can therefore be inserted through a smaller incision. Consequently, the incision is often self-healing and no stitches are required.
Your surgeon will advise you on which is the best technique for you based on all the available information about your eye and your prescription.