No matter what age, cataract surgeries is spreading like a virus all over the United States. The number of Americans undergoing cataract surgeries each year has reached approximately four million. If you are experiencing cataracts in your vision, you must consult your optician and seek advice from your insurers on what options for cataract surgery you have in your coverage plan.
When someone undergoes cataract surgery, their natural eye lens is replaced with an intraocular lens (IOL), an artificial lens that clears your vision, distorted previously with your natural clouded lens.
One essential thing that you may have not come to your knowledge of is that there are multiple varieties of intraocular lens with tailored benefits. However, which type of IOL will best suit your needs and budget is challenging to comprehend solely without the best learning and to reach the final step. You may discuss your options for cataract surgery with your ophthalmologist. In this regard, the following questions may help you make an informed decision.
Options for cataract surgery – Types of IOLs
As said, there are different types of intraocular lenses for cataract surgery. Let’s discuss them in detail;
- Monofocal lenses – Monofocal lenses are subjected to provide ease in the vision for distant objects. They correct the distant vision for a patient with a disability to see distant objects. People use monofocal reading glasses for reading or seeing near or performing near vision tasks.
- Multifocal lenses – With multifocal lenses, you can see near and distant objects more clearly due to built-in corrective zones in the lenses. They are much like bifocal or trifocal lenses that correct vision that helps restore natural function. Sometimes, multifocal lenses are used to correct intermediate vision.
- Extended depth-of-focus (EDOF) IOLs – These lenses are based on providing assistance of only one corrective zone. But they can help if stretched, to provide a distant and intermediate vision.
- Toric lenses – Mostly used to correct astigmatism with built-in correction settings.
- Accommodative lenses – These lenses are used to assist in building natural muscle movement around the eye.
With your specific needs and advice from an ophthalmologist, now you can make an informed decision.
Which artificial lens is affordable?
Your insurer may not cover all types of interocular lenses. But that’s not the case with every insurance company. If you are covered under Medicare and many other insurance companies that cover retinal surgeries, you can expect them to cover the most common IOL, Monofocal lens surgery. These monofocal lenses have been in the talks for centuries and are the most commonly used since then.
On the other hand, other IOLs discussed above can minimize the need for contact lenses and glasses when you wear them. But when it comes to reading, the situations vary from person to person and the severity of the condition. These intraocular lenses are expensive compared to monofocals and for this reason, not many insurance companies cover their cost.
What focal length you need depends on your lifestyle
Possibly your work demands looking at the computer or being virtually present most of the time. Maybe you love to read and are a near-sighted individual. Therefore, it would be recommended to use a near monofocal lens to get a clearer vision for nearer objects and use glasses for distance vision like driving or watching TV.
Comparatively, after some time, you will want to get rid of the glasses completely. If so, then you can opt for both focal lengths with monofocal lenses. Get one lens for a nearer vision and the other one for a distance vision. This technique is referred to as monovision. However, monovision is not suitable for everyone. When you naturally have the habit of focusing on an object from both of your eyes, (say it reading), you may feel drowsy as the brain synthesis the function automatically with natural vision.
But if this sounds interesting to you, it is suggested that you should use monovision glasses first to get used to them prior to your cataract surgery.
Have you experienced moderate to high astigmatism?
People with astigmatism have an eyeball not curved like a basketball naturally, instead, their cornea is more like a football. This means, one curve is relatively longer than the other. This disturbs near and farther vision. With this condition, Toric lenses are more practical to cure moderate to high astigmatism.
Having lenses while experiencing other eye conditions
EDOF and multifocal lenses are not suggested to people who have lost their sight after macular degeneration, glaucoma, or other associated eye ailments. If these lenses are used on vision loss patients, they will block the light reaching the eye and would make things worse. If all you need is to avoid glasses and look for options for cataract surgery – then monovision would be one of the best options.