What is Crystalens®?
Crystalens® is an accommodating intraocular lens that, unlike a standard IOL, can treat both a person’s cataracts and presbyopia—loss of near and intermediate vision. You probably noticed in your forties that you started to lose some of your up-close vision and had to start wearing reading glasses. Crystalens® not only treats your cataracts (a clouding or hardening of your lens), but can also reduce or eliminate your dependence on glasses. It does so by recreating accommodation similar to your eye’s natural lens. The unique Crystalens® can reduce or eliminate glasses for most activities, including: reading a book, working on the computer, and driving a car.
What makes the Crystalens® unique?
In conventional lens implant surgery, which has been the standard treatment for cataracts for many years, the surgeon implants a fixed focus plastic or silicone artificial lens. This lens allows the patient to see well only at distance. For reading vision, patients would require a pair of glasses.
Unlike other intraocular lenses (IOLs), the Crystalens® has the unique ability to focus on objects at varying distances using the eye’s natural muscle. This means that the Crystalens® can provide sharper vision, without corrective lenses, potentially throughout a full range of vision from near to far and everything in between.
Standard (single vision) lens implants do not have the ability to provide a full range of vision. Most people who have single vision lens implants MUST wear glasses for middle and near vision. Similarly, most people over the age of 45 who have LASIK have a single range of vision, unless they have one eye treated for distance and one eye corrected for near vision. This type of treatment, sometimes called “monovision” has its own set of limitations and may not be the answer for everyone.
However, the Crystalens® is able to restore your eye’s natural focusing ability by using a design that corresponds to the way the natural lens flexes and focuses.
HOW IT WORKS
Crystalens® was modeled after the human eye. Like the natural lens, it uses the eye muscle to flex and accommodate in order to focus on objects in the environment at all distances. Crystalens® dynamically adjusts to your visual needs. No lens comes closer to mirroring the function of the natural lens.
- The human lens uses the ciliary muscle to move the lens and allow you to focus on the subject at hand. The crystalens works the same way.
- The lens rests back in the eye to accommodate distance vision, then gently flexes forward to accommodate intermediate vision, then further forward for near vision.
- Movement is enabled by a flexible hinge within the lens.
Crystalens® is designed to allow the optic, or the central circular part of the lens that you see through, to move back and forth as you constantly change focus on images around you. Crystalens® flexes as you focus your vision.
- The first and only FDA-approved accommodating intraocular lens.
- The only FDA approved intraocular lens that uses the natural focusing ability of the eye.
- The only FDA approved presbyopia correcting IOL for cataract patients that provides a single focal point throughout a continuous range of vision.
The effectiveness of the Crystalens® was proven in clinical trials:
- Significantly more patients implanted with a Crystalens® (88.4%) could see better at all distances then
patients implanted with a standard IOL (35.9%)
- Most patients have continued to report excellent vision 7 years after implantation with Crystalens®. More than 100,000 Crystalens® implants have been implanted worldwide, and that number is growing daily.
- The FDA safety and effectiveness clinical data on the most recent multifocal IOL lenses shows that at a distance of 70 cm (27.5″), the percentage of eyes achieving 20/20 or better uncorrected vision and 20/25 or better distance corrected vision was “significantly worse” than the control group.
- Multifocal lens technology is based upon splitting light rays between distances to emphasize near and distance vision while providing little or no support for intermediate vision. Consequently, the vision provided
by multifocals is stepped, requiring patients to overcome a gap in their range of vision.
- The Crystalens® uses the natural focusing muscles to accommodate the full range of vision. As a result,
100 percent of the light rays are focused at each distance so patients see clearly near, far and everything
Crystalens® accommodates like the natural lens. After implantation of Crystalens®, most patients will see brighter and clearer from distance, intermediate to near like they did when they were younger.
ONLY FDA-Approved accommodating IOL
Crystalens® was the first presbyopia correcting IOL introduced into the United States market and is currently the only FDA-approved accommodating IOL. Crystalens® addresses the limitations of standard monofocal IOLs and multifocal IOLs by providing the following advantages to patients:
- Provides a Broad Range of Vision: Crystalens® moves and changes shape using the eye’s natural focusing mechanism, instead of remaining fixed and stationary within the eye. This movement, or accommodation, allows the eye to focus on objects across a broad range of distances to reduce or eliminate dependence on glasses. In particular, this accommodation provides significant advantages in addressing intermediate vision.
- Maintains Clarity of Vision: Unlike multifocal lenses, Crystalens® directs all available light received by the eye to a single focal point, comparable to that of a healthy natural lens.
- Patient Adjustment Not Required: Crystalens® produces a single image consistent with normal vision, meaning patients do not need to neuroadapt to viewing multiple images. Patients also do not need to
tolerate or adjust to high levels of halos and glare often associated with multifocal IOLs.