As we age, beginning around the age of 40, the natural lens inside the eye begins to harden and lose its flexibility. This reduces the eye’s ability to change its focus from near to intermediate, to distance, and back again. This is known as “loss of accommodation” or “presbyopia,” and its earliest symptom is difficulty seeing things up close. Bifocal and even trifocal glasses BEHome necessary for some people to see clearly at all distances.As the natural lens of the eye continues to deteriorate, it starts to become cloudy or brown. Vision becomes blurry, and colors lose their brilliance. At first, frequent changes in glasses prescriptions can help, but left untreated, cataracts can lead to blindness. The only way to see clearly after a cataract matures is to have it removed and then replaced with an intraocular lens, or IOL.

Until recently cataract patients received monofocal lens implants that had only a single power. This meant you had a choice of correction for either far or near vision. If you suffer from presbyopia like many people over the age 50 this would mean that you still need glasses for either reading or for distance vision. Multifocal IOL’s have now been introduced with allow for freedom of glasses while undergoing cataract surgery. Multifocal IOLS accomplish t3his by incorporating several ‘rings’ that focus at different distances and accommodative lenses do so by moving within the eye. The multifocal IOL lens can increase your chances for a life free of dependence on glasses or contacts after cataract surgery for near, far, and intermediate vision. If you have worn glasses for a very long time this might be an opportunity for you to eliminate this hassle from your life.

Multifocal IOL’s may help you in getting rid of glasses Activities like shaving are a lot easier

With Monofocal IOL’s you get good distance vision but need glasses for near vision and reading. With multifocal IOL’s you get “BOTH” good distance and near vision


What is a multifocal lens?
Traditional monofocal lenses, including lens implants, focus light to only one point in space. A multifocal lens has more than one point of focus. A bifocal, which is a type of multifocal, has two points of focus, one at distance and the other at near.
What is the benefit of a multifocal lens implant?
A multifocal lens implant focuses light from distance and near simultaneously. This feature addresses both distant and near vision and makes the recipient less dependent on glasses or contact lenses.
multifocal-iol-2What are the advantages and disadvantages of the multifocal IOL?
The multifocal lens implant provides excellent reading vision and very good distance vision. The intermediate vision is acceptable but some patients who do lots of computer work find they need to sit closer to the computer, make the font size larger on the screen, or get a pair of intermediate vision spectacles to make intermediate work more comfortable. In addition, 25% of patients note glare and haloes around lights at night with the diffractive multifocal IOL, a feature that is inherent to multifocal lenses. These effects may interfere with your ability to drive comfortably at night. However, most patients find that they get used to this phenomenon with time and the glare and haloes BEHome less obvious. Night driving spectacles may assist in reducing this phenomenon. You should know that approximately 7-8% of patients implanted with monofocal lenses also notice glare and halos.
Are there any alternatives to multifocal lenses?
The primary alternative to multifocal lens implantation is monofocal lens implantation. If you request a monofocal lens, you will have to decide whether you want distance vision lens implants in both eyes or whether you want a distance vision implant in one eye and a near vision implant in the other eye. This latter arrangement, called monovision, provides adequate distance and near vision and is best suited for patients who have tried monovision in contacts previously and like the effect
Are there any risks or side effects to multifocal lens implant surgery?
Implantation of a multifocal lens is associated with all the risks and side effects of cataract surgery. These will be explained separately by your doctor.
Will I see 20/20 after surgery?
We hope so, but we cant guarantee it. You are paying for the service and the implant, not a guaranteed result. If the eye is otherwise healthy, the vast majority of patients can achieve 20/20 vision with glasses, contact lenses or refractive surgery (e.g. LASIK, PRK, CK).
multifocal-iol-1Will I need glasses after surgery?
If you opt to receive a monofocal lens implanted in both eyes for distance vision, you will definitely need reading glasses after surgery. If you receive a multifocal lens there is a good chance you wont need glasses. 80% of patients implanted with the diffractive and refractive lenses in their respective FDA clinical trials did not need glasses after surgery for distance or near vision. Of course, not every patient in the trial was spectacle independent. The odds of BEHoming free of spectacles are better if your corneal astigmatism is low and your eyes are healthy.
Is a multifocal lens recommended for every patient?
No. It is recommended for most patients, but not for patients who have problems with their retina (e.g. significant macular degeneration, epiretinal membrane macular pucker , macular holes, significant diabetic retinopathy, history of severe retinal detachment, retinal dystrophies or degenerations, retinal vascular occlusions), advanced glaucoma affecting central vision, irregular corneal astigmatism, corneal scarring, keratoconus, corneal dystrophies or optic neuropathy. Patients with a history of corneal refractive surgery (CK, RK, PRK, LASIK, etc.) may require additional refractive surgery following implantation of a multifocal lens to optimize its performance. In addition, your doctor will discuss the advantages and disadvantages of a multifocal lens as it pertains to your individual lifestyle and expectations. Patients with unrealistic expectations may not be appropriate for multifocal lenses.