Health - Vision
Life happens at more than one distance, but as we age, the lenses in our eyes stiffen and lose the ability to focus from far to near (presbyopia). Cataracts, also an age-related vision problem, cause clouding of the lens of the eye, resulting in blurred vision. Happily, a new intraocular lens (IOL) with extended depth of focus, approved by the FDA in 2016, is giving patients the ability to see clearly at near, immediate and far distances.
About 20 percent of Americans will suffer from cataracts by the age of 65, according to the National Eye Institute. “As part of the gradual aging process, along with graying hair and facial wrinkles that we may not notice over time, cataracts begin to form in the eyes,” says Daniel B. Goldberg, MD, FACS, a board certified physician specializing in cataract, cornea and laser refractive surgery. Smoking, diabetes, air pollution, toxic substances and certain medications can increase the risk of forming cataracts.
“Surgery is the only way to treat cataracts,” says Dr. Goldberg. The surgery involves removing the cloudy lens and replacing it with a synthetic intraocular lens (IOL).
"While IOLs have been the mainstay of cataract treatment for many years, we continue to see advances in the technology," says Dr. Goldberg. “The Tecnis Symfony® Extended Depth of Field IOL is a new option for patients that is resulting in better vision across a broader range of distances.”
Presbyopia, caused by a natural loss of elasticity of the lens, is another part of the aging process, occurring typically beginning in middle age. “Starting in our 40s, it gets harder to see close up, but you can see things far away just fine,” says Dr. Goldberg.
“Older adults with presbyopia often seek laser refractive eye surgery,” he explains, “but what really suits them better is lens replacement surgery which provides a correction for distance and near vision as well as distances in between. The Tecnis Symfony® EDOF IOL mitigates the effects of presbyopia, so patients can see clearly across the full range of vision.”
In addition to increasing the patient’s depth of field, uncorrected visual clarity and image contrast, patients report excellent vision in all lighting conditions and a low incidence of visual disturbances, such as halo and glare.
"Although this is not the first intraocular lens that can provide clear vision at multiple distances, it is the first to provide clear vision at various distances through an extended depth of focus," says Dr. Goldberg, “so it is a great technological advance providing greater results for patients.” Following implantation with the Tecnis Symfony® EDOF IOL, 85% of patients wear glasses either very infrequently, or not at all.
As with any surgical procedure, always consult with a board-certified surgeon experienced in the procedure under consideration.
Atlantic Eye Physicians