Vision plays a crucial role in our daily lives, enabling us to perceive the world around us with clarity. However, many people experience refractive errors that affect their visual acuity. Corrective measures such as glasses and contact lenses have long been used to enhance vision, but they can be cumbersome and inconvenient. In recent years, a revolutionary procedure called Visian has gained popularity as an alternative solution. In this article, we will explore what Visian is, how it works, its benefits, types of Visian implants, the procedure itself, candidacy considerations, risks and complications, recovery and results, as well as the cost associated with this vision correction option.
What is Visian?
Our eyes rely on the cornea and the lens to focus light onto the retina, which then sends signals to the brain for image processing. However, when the shape of the cornea or the length of the eyeball is not ideal, the light rays do not converge properly, leading to refractive errors such as nearsightedness (myopia), farsightedness (hyperopia), and astigmatism. Visian offers a surgical solution to correct these refractive errors, providing patients with improved vision and reducing dependence on glasses or contact lenses.
Visian is a brand name for a type of implantable collamer lens (ICL). It is made from a biocompatible material called Collamer, which combines collagen with a copolymer, making it compatible with the eye’s natural structures. Visian lenses are placed inside the eye, between the iris and the natural lens, without altering the cornea’s shape.
How Does Visian Work?
Visian ICL (Implantable Collamer Lens) works by correcting refractive errors, primarily nearsightedness (myopia), by placing a specially designed lens inside the eye. Here’s how Visian ICL works:
- Pre-surgical evaluation: Before the Visian ICL procedure, you will undergo a comprehensive eye examination to assess your suitability for the surgery. This evaluation includes measurements of your eye’s shape, size, and prescription.
- Customized lens design: The Visian ICL is a thin, biocompatible lens made from a material called Collamer. Collamer is a proprietary material developed by Staar Surgical Company, which combines a collagen base with a copolymer that contains a small amount of porcine collagen. This lens is designed to correct your specific refractive error.
- Surgical procedure: Visian ICL surgery is performed in an outpatient setting under local anesthesia. During the procedure, your surgeon will create a small incision near the edge of your cornea and insert the folded Visian ICL lens through the incision.
- Placement inside the eye: The Visian ICL lens is inserted behind the iris, the colored part of the eye, and in front of the eye’s natural lens. The lens is carefully positioned to correct your specific refractive error, providing clear vision.
Benefits of Visian
These are the benefits of Visian for your eyes:
One of the primary benefits of Visian is the significant improvement in vision that patients experience. By correcting the refractive errors, Visian enables individuals to see clearly and more accurately, enhancing their overall visual acuity.
Freedom from Glasses and Contact Lenses
Visian offers freedom from the constant reliance on glasses or contact lenses. After the Visian procedure, many patients find that they no longer need to wear corrective eyewear, providing them with convenience and a more natural visual experience.
Unlike some other vision correction procedures, Visian is reversible. If necessary, the Visian lens can be removed or replaced, allowing flexibility for any future changes or advancements in vision correction technology.
Suitable for Various Refractive Errors
Visian is a versatile solution for various refractive errors, including myopia, hyperopia, and astigmatism. It can correct a wide range of prescriptions, making it an option for many individuals who seek vision correction.
Types of Visian Implants
Visian offers different types of implants based on the specific needs and conditions of the patient. The three main types of Visian implants are:
Visian ICL (Implantable Collamer Lens)
Visian ICL is the original and most commonly used Visian implant. It is suitable for patients with moderate to high myopia or hyperopia. The Visian ICL provides excellent visual outcomes, and it can also correct astigmatism in certain cases.
Visian TICL (Toric Implantable Collamer Lens)
Visian TICL is designed specifically for patients with astigmatism. It corrects both the astigmatism and the refractive error associated with it, resulting in improved vision and reduced dependence on glasses or contact lenses.
Visian EVO/EVO+ (Extended Depth of Focus)
Visian EVO/EVO+ lenses are advanced implants that provide an extended depth of focus, enabling patients to see clearly at multiple distances. These lenses are especially beneficial for individuals who desire reduced reliance on reading glasses or bifocals.
The Visian Procedure
The Visian procedure involves several steps, including pre-operative evaluation, the surgery itself, and post-operative care. Let’s take a closer look at each of these stages:
Before undergoing the Visian procedure, a comprehensive evaluation is conducted to assess the patient’s eye health, prescription, corneal thickness, and overall suitability for the surgery. This evaluation includes detailed measurements and examinations to ensure the patient is an ideal candidate for Visian.
On the day of the surgery, the patient is typically given a mild sedative to help them relax. The procedure is performed under local anesthesia, and the surgeon creates a small incision to insert the Visian lens. The surgeon then carefully positions the lens in the eye, ensuring proper alignment and stability.
After the Visian procedure, the patient is provided with specific instructions for post-operative care. This may include using prescribed eye drops, wearing protective shields, and attending follow-up appointments to monitor the healing process. It is essential to follow these instructions diligently to optimize recovery and achieve the best possible results.
Candidacy for Visian
While Visian is a remarkable vision correction option, not everyone is a suitable candidate for the procedure. Several factors are considered when determining candidacy for Visian:
Age and Stability of Prescription
Candidates for Visian should generally be over the age of 18 and have a stable prescription for at least one year. Stability ensures that the refractive error has not been changing significantly over time, indicating a suitable time for the procedure.
Eye Health and Conditions
The overall health of the eyes is a crucial consideration for Visian candidacy. Conditions such as glaucoma, cataracts, severe dry eye, and certain retinal diseases may affect eligibility. The surgeon will evaluate the patient’s eye health to determine if Visian is appropriate.
The cornea needs to have sufficient thickness to accommodate the Visian lens comfortably. A thorough examination of the corneal thickness is conducted to ensure it meets the requirements for safe and successful Visian implantation.
Other factors such as pregnancy, certain medications, and autoimmune diseases may affect candidacy for Visian. It is essential to discuss these aspects with the surgeon during the evaluation process.
Risks and Complications
While it is generally considered safe and effective, like any surgical procedure, there are potential risks and complications associated with Visian ICL surgery. It is important to discuss these with your ophthalmologist or surgeon before deciding to undergo the procedure. Here are some of the potential risks and complications:
- Infection: As with any surgery, there is a risk of infection following Visian ICL surgery. This can typically be managed with medication, but in rare cases, it can lead to more severe complications.
- Inflammation: Some patients may experience temporary inflammation in the eye after surgery. This is usually managed with eye drops and resolves over time, but it can cause discomfort and affect vision during the healing process.
- Increased intraocular pressure: The surgery may result in increased pressure inside the eye, known as intraocular pressure. This can occur during the procedure or in the postoperative period. Monitoring and management of intraocular pressure is important to prevent potential complications, such as glaucoma.
- Cataract formation: In rare cases, Visian ICL surgery may accelerate the development of cataracts, which are characterized by clouding of the lens in the eye. Regular eye exams can help detect and manage cataracts if they occur.
- Dislocation or damage to the implant: The implanted collamer lens can become dislocated or damaged during or after surgery. If this occurs, additional procedures may be required to reposition or replace the lens.
Recovery and Results
The recovery process and results following Visian ICL surgery can vary from person to person, but here are some general guidelines:
- Initial healing: After the surgery, you may experience mild discomfort, redness, and blurry vision for a few days. Your surgeon will provide you with instructions on how to care for your eyes during this time, including the use of prescribed eye drops.
- Follow-up visits: You will have several follow-up visits with your surgeon to monitor your progress and ensure proper healing. These visits are crucial for assessing your vision and addressing any concerns or complications that may arise.
- Restrictions and precautions: During the initial recovery period, you will need to avoid rubbing your eyes and engaging in activities that may put a strain on your eyes, such as heavy lifting or strenuous exercise. You may also be advised to wear protective eye shields while sleeping to prevent accidental eye rubbing.
- Return to normal activities: Most individuals can resume their normal activities within a few days to a week after the surgery. However, it’s important to follow your surgeon’s guidelines regarding activities like swimming, wearing makeup, or using skincare products near your eyes.
Cost of Visian
The cost of Visian can vary depending on several factors, including the surgeon’s experience, location, and specific requirements of the patient. It is important to consult with a qualified ophthalmologist to discuss the cost and any potential financing options or insurance coverage available.
Visian is a revolutionary vision correction procedure that offers improved visual acuity, freedom from glasses or contact lenses, and versatility in treating various refractive errors. With its different types of implants, Visian caters to the specific needs of patients, providing customized solutions. While candidacy considerations, risks, and costs are essential factors to evaluate, the potential benefits of Visian make it an attractive choice for many individuals seeking a clear and enhanced vision.
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