Best Implantable Collamer Lens (ICL) Surgery at Medicover

Implantable Collamer Lens (ICL) surgery is a vision correction procedure designed to treat refractive errors such as myopia (nearsightedness), hyperopia (farsightedness), and astigmatism. Unlike LASIK or PRK, ICL surgery involves implanting a thin, collamer lens inside the eye to correct the refractive error and improve visual acuity. This procedure is an alternative for individuals who might not be suitable candidates for corneal refractive surgeries.


Indications of Icl Surgery Procedure

ICL (Implantable Collamer Lens) surgery is typically indicated for individuals who have certain refractive errors and meet specific criteria. The procedure can be particularly beneficial for those who:

  • Have High Degrees of Myopia (Nearsightedness) : ICL surgery can effectively correct severe myopia that might not be suitable for other vision correction methods like LASIK or PRK.
  • Have Moderate to High Degrees of Hyperopia (Farsightedness) : ICL surgery can be an option for individuals with significant hyperopia, especially if they are not suitable candidates for other refractive surgeries.
  • Have Astigmatism : ICLs are available in toric designs, which can correct astigmatism along with nearsightedness or farsightedness.
  • Are Seeking a Reversible Option : Unlike some other refractive surgeries, ICL surgery does not involve altering the cornea's tissue. This means the procedure can be reversed by removing the ICL if necessary.
  • Have Thin Corneas : Individuals with thin corneas might not be suitable candidates for LASIK or PRK. ICL surgery can be a viable option as it doesn't involve corneal tissue removal.
  • Have Dry Eyes or Ocular Surface Issues : Some individuals who experience dry eyes or other ocular surface issues might not be suitable candidates for laser-based refractive surgeries. ICL surgery can be considered in such cases.
  • Are Looking for High-Quality Vision Correction : ICL surgery can provide excellent visual outcomes with minimal risk of inducing higher-order aberrations, leading to better quality of vision, reduced glare, and halos, especially in low-light conditions.
  • Are Not Candidates for LASIK or PRK : Some individuals might not meet the criteria for LASIK or PRK due to various reasons, such as corneal irregularities or previous eye surgeries. ICL surgery can be a suitable alternative.

Steps involved in Icl Surgery Procedure:

Preparing for ICL (Implantable Collamer Lens) surgery involves a series of important steps to ensure a safe and successful procedure. Here's a comprehensive guide on how to prepare:

  • Consultation and Evaluation:
    • Schedule a consultation with an ophthalmologist who specializes in refractive surgery.
    • The doctor will perform a comprehensive eye examination to assess your suitability for ICL surgery and determine your prescription.
  • Preoperative Preparations:Before the surgery, the doctor will measure the size and shape of your eye's anterior chamber to determine the appropriate size of the ICL.
  • Anesthesia:On the day of the surgery, you'll be given numbing eye drops to ensure your comfort during the procedure. Most ICL surgeries do not require general anesthesia.
  • Surgery Day:
    • You'll be escorted to the operating room for the surgery.
    • You might be given a mild sedative to help you relax.
  • Incision and Lens Placement:
    • A tiny incision (usually around 2.5 to 3.0 mm) is made at the edge of the cornea.
    • The folded ICL is inserted through the incision and placed in front of the natural lens, behind the iris.
  • Lens Positioning:
    • The ICL unfolds and positions itself correctly within the eye.
    • The doctor will ensure the lens is properly aligned and centered.
  • Postoperative Process:
    • The small incision is self-sealing and typically does not require stitches.
    • No need for a patch, and you can often see relatively well immediately after the surgery.
  • Recovery Room:You'll be moved to a recovery area where you'll be monitored for a short time as the effects of any sedation wear off.
  • Discharge:After a short period of observation, you'll be allowed to go home, accompanied by a friend or family member.
  • Follow-Up Appointments:You'll have follow-up appointments to assess your healing and visual acuity in the days, weeks, and months following the surgery.
  • Eye Drops and Medications:
    • Your doctor will prescribe eye drops to prevent infection and inflammation and to promote healing.
    • You'll also receive instructions on using artificial tears to keep your eyes moist.
  • Restrictions and Care:You'll be advised to avoid rubbing your eyes and engaging in activities that could potentially cause trauma to the eyes during the initial healing phase.
  • Visual Improvement:Many patients experience improved vision within a day or two after the surgery.

Who will Treat for Icl Surgery Procedure

ICL (Implantable Collamer Lens) surgery is a specialized procedure that is typically performed by experienced ophthalmologists or eye surgeons who have expertise in refractive surgery and intraocular lens implantation. These professionals are well-trained in performing various eye surgeries and are familiar with the intricacies of ICL surgery.

  • Ophthalmologists : Ophthalmologists are medical doctors who specialize in the diagnosis, treatment, and surgical management of eye conditions. Within the field of ophthalmology, some doctors may have subspecialties in refractive surgery. These ophthalmologists are highly skilled in performing procedures like ICL surgery to correct refractive errors.
  • Refractive Surgeons : Refractive surgeons are ophthalmologists who have undergone additional training and specialization in refractive surgery techniques, including ICL surgery. They are particularly well-versed in the various types of refractive procedures and can recommend the most appropriate option for each individual based on their eye anatomy, refractive error, and overall eye health.
  • Cornea Specialists : Ophthalmologists who specialize in refractive surgery and surgeries may also be skilled in performing ICL surgery. Cornea specialists have in-depth knowledge of corneal anatomy and conditions, which can be crucial for the success of ICL implantation.
  • Cataract Surgeons : Cataract surgeons are experienced in intraocular lens implantation, a skill that is directly applicable to ICL surgery. ICLs are implanted in a similar manner to intraocular lenses used in cataract surgery, so cataract surgeons may have the necessary skills to perform ICL procedures as well.

Preparing for ICL Surgery Procedure

Preparing for ICL (Implantable Collamer Lens) surgery involves several steps to ensure a successful procedure and a smooth recovery. It's important to follow your eye surgeon's instructions closely. Here are the general steps you might need to take to prepare for ICL surgery:

  • Consultation and Evaluation : Schedule a consultation with an experienced eye surgeon who specializes in refractive surgery. During this appointment, your surgeon will evaluate your eye health, refractive error, corneal thickness, and overall suitability for ICL surgery. They will also discuss the procedure, potential risks, benefits, and answer any questions you might have.
  • Medical History : Provide your complete medical history, including any existing medical conditions, allergies, medications (prescription and over-the-counter), and previous eye surgeries. Certain medications and medical conditions might need to be adjusted before the surgery.
  • Eye Examinations : Your surgeon will likely perform a series of comprehensive eye exams to measure your eye's dimensions, refractive error, corneal health, and overall eye health. These tests help determine the appropriate size and power of the ICL to be implanted.
  • Stop Contact Lens Use : If you wear contact lenses, you might be instructed to discontinue their use for a certain period before the surgery. This is because contact lenses can alter the shape of the cornea, which can affect the accuracy of measurements taken during the pre-operative assessments.
  • Arrange Transportation : Since your vision might be blurry immediately after the surgery, arrange for someone to drive you home after the procedure. You might also need assistance for a day or two following the surgery.
  • Fasting : Depending on the anesthesia used during the surgery, you might be instructed to fast for a certain number of hours before the procedure. Follow your surgeon's guidelines closely regarding eating and drinking.
  • Medication Adjustments : Your surgeon will provide guidance on whether you should continue or temporarily stop certain medications before the surgery. This might include medications that could affect bleeding or healing.
  • Post-Operative Care : Discuss post-operative care instructions with your surgeon. You might need to use antibiotic or anti-inflammatory eye drops before and after the surgery to prevent infection and inflammation.
  • Arrange for Recovery : Plan for a period of rest and recovery after the surgery. You might experience some discomfort or blurry vision initially, so make sure you have a comfortable environment and any necessary supplies at home.
  • Follow Instructions : Your surgeon will provide specific instructions related to the day of the surgery, such as when to arrive, what to wear, and any additional details. Follow these instructions carefully to ensure a smooth process.

Recovery after ICL Surgery Procedure

Recovery after ICL (Implantable Collamer Lens) surgery is generally smooth, but it's important to follow your surgeon's post-operative care instructions closely to ensure the best outcomes and minimize the risk of complications. Here's what you can expect during the recovery period after ICL surgery:

  • Initial Discomfort : It's normal to experience some discomfort, mild pain, or a foreign body sensation in the eyes immediately after the surgery. This discomfort usually subsides within a day or two.
  • Blurry Vision : Your vision might be blurry initially, and it could take a few days to a few weeks for it to stabilize and improve. It's common for vision to fluctuate during the early recovery phase.
  • Use of Prescribed Eye Drops : Your surgeon will likely prescribe antibiotic and anti-inflammatory eye drops to prevent infection and reduce inflammation. Follow the prescribed schedule for using these drops to ensure proper healing.
  • Follow Post-Operative Instructions : Adhere to your surgeon's guidelines for post-operative care, which may include avoiding rubbing your eyes, refraining from strenuous activities for a few days, and keeping water out of your eyes while showering.
  • Rest and Recovery : It's recommended to take it easy for a few days following the surgery. Avoid activities that could strain your eyes, and get sufficient rest to aid the healing process.
  • Follow-Up Appointments : Your surgeon will schedule one or more follow-up appointments to monitor your healing progress. These appointments are crucial for ensuring that the ICLs are properly positioned and that your eyes are healing as expected.
  • Return to Normal Activities : Most individuals can return to their normal activities, including work, within a few days to a week after the surgery, depending on the nature of their job. However, strenuous activities like heavy lifting and intense exercise might need to be avoided for a bit longer.
  • Gradual Vision Improvement : Your vision should gradually improve over the weeks following the surgery. You might notice significant improvements within a few days, but it can take a few weeks for your vision to stabilize and reach its optimal outcome.
  • Driving Restrictions : You should avoid driving until your surgeon confirms that your vision meets the legal requirements for safe driving. This might vary based on your specific visual acuity and recovery speed.
  • Avoid Direct Sunlight and Protective Eyewear : During the early stages of recovery, it's a good idea to protect your eyes from direct sunlight and harsh environmental conditions by wearing sunglasses. This can help reduce discomfort and minimize the risk of irritation.
  • Patience : Full visual stability might take several weeks to achieve. Be patient and communicate with your surgeon if you have any concerns about your recovery or visual progress.

Lifestyle changes after ICL Surgery

After undergoing ICL (Implantable Collamer Lens) surgery, there are a few lifestyle changes and considerations you might need to keep in mind to ensure a smooth recovery and maintain the best possible outcomes. Here are some lifestyle changes to consider:

  • Follow Post-Operative Instructions : Adhering to your surgeon's post-operative care instructions is crucial for a successful recovery. This includes using prescribed eye drops as directed, avoiding rubbing your eyes, and following any specific guidelines provided by your surgeon.
  • Protect Your Eyes : Especially during the initial healing phase, protect your eyes from direct sunlight and bright lights by wearing sunglasses. This can help reduce discomfort and sensitivity to light.
  • Avoid Water Exposure : Avoid getting water directly into your eyes, especially during the first few days after surgery. This can help prevent irritation and infection.
  • Avoid Strenuous Activities : While recovery times can vary, it's generally a good idea to avoid strenuous activities such as heavy lifting, intense exercise, and contact sports for a week or two after surgery. Consult your surgeon for specific guidelines based on your case.
  • Monitor Your Vision : Pay attention to any changes in your vision or any unusual symptoms. If you experience sudden changes or discomfort, contact your surgeon promptly.
  • Driving Restrictions : Follow your surgeon's recommendations regarding driving. Your vision needs to meet certain legal requirements for safe driving before you resume driving.
  • Resume Work and Activities Gradually : You can usually return to work and your regular activities within a few days to a week after the surgery, depending on your job and the nature of the activities. However, it's best to avoid heavy strain on your eyes during this initial period.
  • Avoid Rubbing Your Eyes : Refrain from rubbing or touching your eyes, as this can increase the risk of infection and interfere with the healing process.
  • Attend Follow-Up Appointments : Keep your scheduled follow-up appointments with your surgeon to monitor your healing progress and address any concerns.
  • Eye Makeup and Cosmetics : It's advisable to avoid using eye makeup and cosmetics around your eyes for the first week or two after surgery to minimize the risk of contamination and irritation.
  • Stay Hydrated and Maintain a Healthy Diet : Adequate hydration and a balanced diet can support overall healing and eye health.
  • Stay Informed : Learn about potential risks, complications, and signs of any issues that might arise after surgery. Being informed will help you take appropriate action if needed.
  • Limit Screen Time : While digital devices themselves won't affect the ICLs, excessive screen time might lead to eye strain and discomfort. Follow the 20-20-20 rule: every 20 minutes, take a 20-second break and look at something 20 feet away.

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Frequently Asked Questions

What is ICL surgery?

ICL surgery is a vision correction procedure involving the implantation of a specialized lens into the eye to correct refractive errors like myopia, hyperopia, and astigmatism.

Who is a suitable candidate for ICL surgery?

Individuals with high refractive errors, thin corneas, or those unsuitable for LASIK/PRK may be good candidates.

Is ICL surgery reversible?

Yes, ICL surgery is reversible, as the lens can be removed or exchanged if necessary.

How long does the ICL surgery procedure take?

ICL surgery typically takes around 15 to 30 minutes per eye.

Is ICL surgery painful?

No, the procedure is generally not painful due to the administration of numbing eye drops.

What is the recovery time after ICL surgery?

Most individuals can return to normal activities within a week, but full vision stabilization can take a few weeks.

When will my vision improve after ICL surgery?

Vision improvement can vary, but many notice significant improvement within a few days to weeks.

Can both eyes be treated on the same day?

Yes, many surgeons perform ICL surgery on both eyes during the same session.

Are there any risks associated with ICL surgery?

Risks include infection, glare, halos, and changes in intraocular pressure, among others. Your surgeon will discuss these with you.

Can I still get cataracts after ICL surgery?

Yes, ICL surgery doesn't prevent cataracts. However, the ICL can be removed if cataracts develop.

Will I still need glasses after ICL surgery?

While ICL surgery can significantly reduce or eliminate the need for glasses, some individuals might still require them for specific tasks.

Can I undergo ICL surgery if I have dry eyes?

ICL surgery might be an option, as it doesn't typically exacerbate dry eye symptoms. Consult your surgeon for personalized advice.

Can I feel the ICL in my eye?

No, the ICL is typically not felt once it's properly positioned within the eye.

Are there age restrictions for ICL surgery?

Generally, candidates should be between 21 and 45 years old, but this can vary based on individual factors.

Can I undergo ICL surgery if I've had LASIK before?

It's possible, but previous LASIK might affect candidacy. Consult your surgeon for a thorough evaluation.

Is ICL surgery covered by insurance?

ICL surgery is often considered an elective procedure, so insurance coverage may vary. Check with your insurance provider.

How long do I need to take off work after ICL surgery?

Most individuals can return to work within a few days to a week after the surgery, depending on the nature of their job.

When can I start driving after ICL surgery?

Follow your surgeon's recommendations; you should have stable and clear vision before resuming driving.

Can I swim after ICL surgery?

It's generally advised to avoid water exposure for the first few days after surgery to prevent infection.

How long do ICLs last?

ICLs are designed for long-term use and can often provide stable vision correction for many years.