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Refractive Lens Exchange Long Beach

Stop depending on readers and bifocals.

The majority of people entering their 40’s experience worsening vision when reading close-up. You may notice difficulty with reading your phone or reading a menu at a restaurant. This problem is called presbyopia and only worsens as you age. It is caused by a gradual stiffening and opacification of the natural lens inside of your eye. Refractive Lens Exchange (RLE) is also known as Custom Lens Replacement and involves a replacement of your natural lens with an advanced technology artificial lens which gives you a broad range of vision from near to far distance vision. If you are ready to say goodbye to the hassles associated with reading glasses and bifocals, then Refractive Lens Exchange may be a great option for you.

We are your Long Beach eye doctor that specializes in vision correction surgery. Board certified ophthalmologist and refractive surgeon Dr. Nimesh Pathak specializes in Refractive Lens Exchange, laser vision correction, cataract surgery, as well as other vision correction procedures for other eye conditions and has helped thousands of patients see more clearly. You can actually put an end to using glasses or contacts and achieve the clear vision you’ve always desired with this procedure. If you’re interested in learning more about Refractive Lens Exchange or would like to schedule a complimentary consultation, please Call or text Lucent Vision in Long Beach, California today to request an appointment, or make an appointment here.

Who is a candidate for Refractive Lens Exchange?

Ideal candidates are usually over the age of 45 and are using readers or bifocals.

Is it safe?

Lens replacement is based on the cataract extraction technique which is one of the safest and most commonly performed procedures in the United States. The procedure and the technology have been perfected over the last 50 years.

Benefits of Refractive Lens Exchange

  • Painless: The procedure is performed with mild sedation or “twilight sleep.”
  • Quick: Both eyes are done on the same day in about 45 minutes.
  • Improves vision without constant reliance on contact lenses, progressives, bifocals, or readers.
  • Corrects nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism.
  • Prevents the development of cataracts later in life.

Why choose Lucent Vision for your Refractive Lens Exchange?

  • It’s all about YOU! Being a boutique refractive surgery center allows us the time to address your concerns and personally guide you on our journey to clear vision. Your customized vision correction plan will be tailored to your lifestyle and vision needs.
  • Our patients love us! We have a track record of oustanding outcomes and stellar reviews. Dr. Pathak is the highest-rated Refractive Lens Exchange surgeon in Long Beach California.
  • With you every step of the way. Dr. Pathak will be personally involved in every step of your care, from your first consultation all the way through your final post-operative visit.

What is Refractive Lens Exchange?

A new artificial lens called an intraocular lens (IOL) will be used to replace your dysfunctional natural lens during the Refractive Lens Exchange (RLE) procedure, which is very similar to a cataract surgery. An ultrasound device is used to remove the natural lens from your eye carefully, and it is replaced with the IOL. Similar to how a contact lens functions on the surface of the eye, the intraocular lens implant bends incoming light via your pupil to concentrate it precisely onto the retina. RLE is also known as Clear Lens Exchange, or Custom Lens Replacement.

Implantable intraocular lenses require no maintenance, in contrast to conventional contact lenses. Additionally, you cannot become allergic to it over time. Patients report that they do not feel or notice the new lens implant, and others cannot see it. Only your eye doctors will know that you had a vision correction procedure. The new lens won’t change the way your eye looks from the outside, but it will significantly enhance your vision. Dr. Pathak has extensive experience with a wide variety of intraocular lens options, and these lenses are designed to fit your unique visual needs.

Call Lucent Vision today for more information about Refractive Lens Exchange and see if this life-changing vision correction procedure is right for you! We can’t wait to start you on your journey to better vision.

Free Consultation

  • Approximately 45 minutes.
  • Comprehensive analysis of your eyes with the most advanced imaging devices.
  • We will determine if you are a safe candidate for the procedure.
  • Your Refractive Lens Exchange surgeon, Dr. Pathak, will answer all of your questions.

Procedure Day

  • You will be given intravenous sedation to reduce any anxiety and make you feel more comfortable.
  • We will use numbing drops to prevent pain during your procedure.
  • The procedure is performed sequentially in both eyes and will take about 45 minutes.
  • We give you your medicated eye drops in a customized post-operative kit and you are on your way home.

The Day After

  • You wake up and you can see without your glasses or contacts!
  • Brief post-operative check in the office with Dr. Pathak.

“I decided to go forward with lens replacement and am so glad that I did! I could see better almost immediately, and after a week of healing at my follow up found that my vision is now 20/20! Dr. Pathak was the best. He’s available 24/7 to help with any issues or questions and made the entire experience amazing. I was completely comfortable going into the surgery which is a testament to Dr. Pathak’s nature and professionalism. I highly recommend Lucent Vision!”

– Jen

FAQs about Refractive Lens Exchange

What happens during a Refractive Lens Exchange surgical procedure?

The natural lens of the eye is removed during RLE surgery and is replaced with an artificial intraocular lens, or IOL, to correct or significantly reduce a specific type of refractive error and enable sharp vision at various distances. This artificial lens is much like an implantable contact lens that sits inside of the eye, instead of on the surface of the eye. The team at Lucent Vision will make sure that you are relaxed, comfortable, and informed about the entire process before beginning your Refractive Lens Exchange. Dr. Pathak uses a “twilight sleep” anesthetic medication to help patients have a painless procedure. After this medication is administered, the Refractive Lens Exchange procedure is performed sequentially in both eyes. The natural lens will then be safely removed using ultrasound technology after a tiny incision is made in the corneal tissue. The new customized lens will then be implanted into the eye through the microscopic opening in the cornea. This incision is self-sealing so that no stitches are needed.

What is presbyopia?

In their early 40s, most people start holding books, menus, and newspapers farther away from their eyes in order to read them. They might struggle with sewing crafts or sit further away from computer screens. Simply put, any activities that are performed at arms length may be more difficult due to blurry vision. This age-related condition is known as presbyopia. The lens inside of our eyes naturally becomes thicker and less flexible as we age into our 40s, which causes presbyopia. Our lenses lose the ability to adjust to seeing many of the minute details we were once able to notice, much like a camera lens stuck in one place.

Generations in the past had to accept these changes as an inevitable part of aging. Or they would be forced to carry around a pair of readers or “cheaters” to see things at a near distance. Thanks to advancements in refractive surgery and vision correction technology we can now offer a solution to this problem. Refractive Lens Exchange, also known as Custom Lens Replacement, is becoming more and more popular as a way to correct and restore vision. In addition, the procedure also prevents cataracts from forming and eliminates the need for any future cataract surgeries.

Does everyone get presbyopia?

Even if you’ve had LASIK in the past, you’ll start to notice that your near vision is fuzzy when you reach your forties. Eventually, every one of us in the United States will lose at least some visual acuity because our natural lenses will become more dysfunctional as we age. Your phone or computer screen will be difficult to read, and you will need to hold items like books, menus, and newspapers farther out in order to view them. Some people will notice these symptoms in their early 40s, while others may notice them in their early 50s.

What is a cataract?

The term “dysfunctional lens syndrome” (DLS) is used to refer to the natural decline of functional vision brought on by crystalline lens changes. Previously classified as “pre-cataracts” and mostly untreated as a result, it is now recognized as a health issue that should be addressed if visual freedom is desired.

Cataract formation is further along the continuum of age-related lens changes. The eye’s natural lens gradually thickens, hardens, turns yellow, and becomes hazy as we age; this condition is known as a cataract. Cataracts negatively impact vision by scattering and blocking light. Glare and halo effects (particularly at night), as well as a general decrease in visual quality and color perception are the result. As the cataract worsens, there is a progressive loss of clarity of the normal lens within the eye and decreased visual perception.

Who is a candidate for Refractive Lens Exchange?

Good candidates for Refractive Lens Exchange (RLE) are typically beyond their mid-forties and have started needing readers, progressives, or contact lenses to help them see things at both near and far distances. For a majority of these patients, laser vision correction procedures alone would not allow for an adequate correction to deliver clear vision at all distances. People with corneas that are too thin for LASIK procedures or other modern types of laser refractive surgery may also be good candidates for an RLE procedure. Following your initial consultation and eye exam, Dr. Pathak will choose the best combination of artificial intraocular lens (IOLs) for your unique vision requirements.

Do Refractive Lens Exchange results last long-term?

The improvements in your vision that you get from a Refractive Lens Exchange are lifelong. Refractive Lens Exchange (RLE) is a method of correcting vision permanently. The intraocular lens implant is made to last the remainder of your life, so you won’t need to replace it. The artificial lens implant in your eye does not need to be maintained either.

Can you have Refractive Lens Exchange if you have thin corneas?

Refractive Lens Exchange (RLE) is a potential alternative to LASIK or other types of laser eye surgery for certain patients who are in their mid 40s and beyond. During lens implantation, an artificial intraocular lens is used to replace the eye’s natural lens. The enhanced lens implants make it possible to see objects more clearly, and many patients can completely discontinue using their reading glasses. The treatment is similar to cataract surgery, with the exception that the natural lens is clear rather than cloudy, as it is when a patient has cataracts. Nonetheless, there are other vision correction procedures that may be a better fit for your eyes if you have thin corneas. During your complimentary consultation, Dr. Pathak will discuss the best options available for your particular vision needs.

Will I need glasses for distance vision after Refractive Lens Exchange?

The custom intraocular lens implants (IOL) that are selected for your eyes could impact how you see things after your Refractive Lens Exchange (RLE).

An advanced multifocal IOL allows you to focus clearly at a broad range of distances. A high-quality multifocal lens will frequently reduce or eliminate your need for a corrective lens after surgery.

Extra benefits of using premium multifocal lenses include:

  • More broad range of vision.
  • Improved vision for intermediate range tasks such as working on a computer on a desktop.
  • Enhanced ability to read and perform other close-up tasks.

Other options include basic monofocal lenses that won’t allow you to adjust your focus at different distances. These monofocal lenses are employed in certain patients who have a history of “monovision” or “blended vision” whereby one of the eyes is corrected for distance vision, and the other for near vision. At Lucent Vision, we perform RLE procedures with monofocal, multifocal, trifocal, and extended-depth-of-focus (EDOF) lenses. Dr. Pathak will discuss all of your premium IOL options with you and help select the right lens for the desired visual outcome you are hoping for.

Does Refractive Lens Exchange treat high myopia?

Refractive Lens Exchange (RLE), can be used to treat exceptionally high degrees of myopia (nearsightedness). Some of the best candidates for RLE are patients with high myopia who are presbyopic or close to developing presbyopia.

Can I get Refractive Lens Exchange after LASIK laser eye surgery?

You can have lens replacement surgery if you’ve had LASIK surgery in the past. In contrast to laser eye surgery, which targets the cornea, lens replacement surgery replaces the eye’s natural lens. By arranging a consultation with our expert team at Lucent Vision, you can determine if you are a good candidate for RLE corrective eye surgery.

Does Refractive Lens Exchange correct astigmatism?

Refractive Lens Exchange, also known as Custom Lens Replacement surgery, can be used to correct a wide range of refractive errors, including astigmatism, presbyopia, nearsightedness, and farsightedness. There are FDA-approved premium lens options that can simultaneously correct astigmatism, myopia, hyperopia, and presbyopia. During the comprehensive eye evaluation you will receive at your consultation, we will determine your eligibility for all of the newest IOL options available.

Is Refractive Lens Exchange permanent?

Once the intraocular lenses have been implanted, and the Refractive Lens Exchange (RLE) operation is finished, the changes are permanent. Since these lenses are composed of specialized medical-grade acrylic, they cannot grow or change like the natural lens of the eye. The new lens is intended to be a long-term solution for refractive errors such as myopia, hyperopia, astigmatism, and presbyopia.

Is Refractive Lens Exchange painful?

Refractive Lens Exchange (RLE) surgery takes about 10-15 minutes per eye, and you will not feel any pain during the process. You might feel a mild sensation of scratchiness in your eyes immediately following your procedure. Any mild discomfort subsides within 48 hours, and we will provide you with medicated eye drops that can help in the meanwhile.

Is Refractive Lens Exchange safe?

Yes, Refractive Lens Exchange (RLE) is a more advanced version of cataract surgery that is performed earlier in life. The techniques and technology required for a safe cataract surgery have been refined over the last 50 years. These same techniques and technologies have been adapted to the eyes of younger patients for the RLE procedure. Artificial lenses have been shown to be well tolerated inside the eye since the 1970s. The risk of any complication associated with the surgery is extremely low.

How long does it take to recover from Refractive Lens Exchange?

The majority of patients who have Refractive Lens Exchange start to enjoy their new vision in as soon as 1 to 4 days. You might encounter a few intermittent episodes of blurred vision, glare, and dry eyes during the first 4 to 12 weeks. There is no need to be concerned because these are regarded as typical features of the adjustment process. Most vision correction procedures cause this temporary change in your tear production system. Most patients are able to effectively treat these symptoms of dryness with lubricating eye drops. Over time, your tear production system will normalize, and your brain will also be able to adapt to the new lens technology.

During the first few weeks following your procedure, we will schedule a series of required follow-up appointments with your surgeon to assess how your recovery is coming along.

How long does a Refractive Lens Exchange procedure take?

The Refractive Lens Exchange procedure only takes about 10-15 minutes per eye, and the effects are essentially immediate. As a matter of fact, your total time in the actual surgical suite is usually less than 45 minutes. Most patients report that it feels even shorter than that due to the effect of anesthesia. After the procedure, you’ll need a ride home from a friend or family member.

Are there any restrictions after a Refractive Lens Exchange (RLE) surgery?

Following RLE surgery, patients are advised to relax, but they are free to resume regular activities as soon as they feel comfortable. You should refrain from rubbing or bumping your eyes during the first week, as well as from getting soap or water in your eyes while taking a shower or bath.

We will counsel you to avoid lifting big objects (those weighing more than 25 pounds) and engaging in strenuous physical activity for at least one week. For that same one week time frame, patients should refrain from using hot tubs and swimming in lakes, oceans, or pools.

Is Refractive Lens Exchange surgery covered by insurance?

Having a Refractive Lens Exchange (RLE) is considered an elective procedure and is therefore not covered by insurance. We are happy to go over some of our great financing options, which include affordable monthly payments. Our financing options are designed to fit any budget. Additionally, many patients use their HSA or FSA to pay for an RLE surgery.

Will Refractive Lens Exchange affect my future eye health?

Your eyesight will be corrected after a custom lens replacement procedure, which will prevent the development of cataracts in the future and eliminate the need for additional cataract treatments. You can see clearly for the rest of your life, and Refractive Lens Exchange has no adverse effects on other medical issues.

What are the main benefits of Refractive Lens Exchange?

The goal of Refractive Lens Exchange (RLE) surgery is to free you from the need for glasses or contact lenses. After RLE our patients are generally able to perform their daily activities at all distances, near and far, without the use of glasses. In addition, many people who are not candidates for other vision correction procedures can benefit from RLE.

Why should I have an RLE procedure instead of just waiting to have Cataract Surgery?

You alone are the only one who can make this decision because it is a personal one. Dysfunctional Lens Syndrome, which affects everyone, is the cause of near-vision loss and age-related vision disturbances. Our vision gradually deteriorates as a result of these lens changes, and this process differs from person to person. As a result, you might need to get new glasses and eyeglass prescriptions over time as your refraction changes. Refractive Lens Exchange (RLE) is a comparable surgical procedure to cataract surgery. However, a lens that corrects eyesight and prevents cataracts is implanted in lieu of your natural lens so that you no longer have to endure deteriorating vision and regularly changing eyeglasses while waiting years for cataract formation.

Due to technological advancements and the procedure’s safety, many of our patients are deciding that it makes sense to have an RLE surgery instead of waiting to have Cataract Surgery. The advent of multifocal IOLs (intraocular lenses) has revolutionized lens exchange procedures. In addition, taking this route will prevent future vision loss when cataracts develop or advance.

The mission of Lucent Vision is to deliver the benefits of clear vision without the need for contacts or glasses. To learn more about our vision correction procedures call our office or make an appointment. Our team is excited to meet you and determine if Refractive Lens Exchange or one of our other vision correction surgeries is an ideal approach for you to get the clear vision that you want.

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