The Benefits of Refractive Lens Exchange

While laser vision correction procedures such as LASIK and PRK remain very popular, the fact is that they are not always the best option for individuals who want to reduce dependence on corrective eyewear for people who have problems with reading and distance vision. Refractive lens exchange, or RLE, can be a very effective procedure for patients who may not be candidates for laser treatments, and particularly ideal for people aged 45 and older who are beginning to develop presbyopia, a common, age-related decline in near vision.

RLE is an elective, out-patient procedure designed to replace your eye’s natural lens with an intraocular lens implant (IOL). RLE surgery can address a variety of refractive errors such as nearsightedness, farsightedness, presbyopia, and/or astigmatism. The Eye Institute of Utah offers a full array of premium IOLs, including toric IOLs to correct astigmatism and multifocal IOLs to improve vision at all distances – near, intermediate, and distance. Thanks to the recent FDA approvals of the ReSTOR® Toric Multifocal and Tecnis® Symfony Toric IOLs, there are now IOL options that can simultaneously address both presbyopia and astigmatism at the same time. A comprehensive, dilated exam with an ophthalmologist will be necessary to determine your candidacy for various IOL options. The results from RLE surgery are typically permanent, and this procedure eliminates the potential for developing cataracts in the future.

In addition to the vision quality benefits associated with RLE, the procedure is often completed in less than 30 minutes and recovery is generally minimal. In fact, most patients are able to resume normal daily activities the very next day. RLE can be particularly advantageous for patients who have age-related vision conditions such as presbyopia, as well as for individuals who are looking for an alternative to laser vision correction.

Would you like to learn more about refractive lens exchange? Contact us today with any questions you may have, or to schedule a consultation with one of our experienced ophthalmologists.