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Refractive lens exchange is a type of vision correction surgery that involves inserting a permanent, intra-ocular lens (IOL). It’s a bit like having a contact lens put in that you never have to change. This type of treatment is often combined with cataract surgery, with cataracts being removed before the insertion of an implantable lens. It’s also a good alternative for patients who are not eligible for laser eye surgery, generally for patients aged 50+.
Refractive lens exchange (RLE) can treat a number of vision problems, including:
What is great about the surgery is that it can be performed on patients who would otherwise miss out on vision correction surgery. Patients with high degrees of myopia and hypermetropia will experience better results with RLE. Older patients (generally over fifty years old) looking for vision correction may opt for refractive lens exchange over laser eye surgery as it also treats cataracts.
During the surgery, a part of the eye called the crystalline lens is removed through a tiny cut (2.2mm wide). This is the transparent part of the eye that focuses light. It is replaced (or exchanged) with an artificial lens with the right prescription to correct the patient’s vision. The whole procedure is carried out under local anaesthetic, so it’s completely painless and takes around 15 minutes per eye.
These days, there’s a wide variety of implantable lenses to choose from, so your IOL can be customised to provide the very highest quality of vision.
Your surgeon will talk you through the best options for you.
To book a consultation with one of our surgeons, please call us on 0808 133 2020 or fill in the online booking form.
What is refractive lens exchange? Is it the same as clear lens extraction? Some of the words and phrases surrounding the surgery can be a little confusing. We’re here to make things clear.
It’s worth remembering just how precious our sight really is. World Sight Day is an annual awareness day, to focus global attention on blindness and vision impairment. Most sight loss is preventable, so regular eye examinations are a must to catch eye conditions early.
Cataract surgery is a procedure to remove the cloudy lens in a patient with cataracts, replacing it with an artificial, intraocular lens (IOL). Most patients undergoing