Multifocal lens implants for presbyopia

Presbyopia, or “old-sightedness,” is part of the spectrum of dysfunctional lens syndrome, which affects everyone, beginning in one’s forties or even mid-thirties, and becoming progressively worse over one’s lifetime. The lens of the eye becomes thickened, dense and stiff as it continually adds protein layers to itself. The results are: 1. Inability to see near AND far out of the same eye with the same glasses or contact lens prescription, thus requiring some sort of bifocal, trifocal or multifocal glasses or contacts; 2. Progressive yellowing of colors; 3. Optical aberrations which can cause blur, glare, halos and other effects.

Several treatments are available for presbyopia, including multifocal lens implants, which are available at the time of cataract surgery or refractive lens exchange. All of these implants aim to focus the vision well at a distance, but also provide a near point of focus so as to decrease dependency on reading glasses. A wide variety of implants are available, each providing a different distance of best focus for near tasks.

Extended depth of focus (EDOF) implants are now also available, providing a continuous focal range from infinity to approximately arm’s length. While over-the-counter reading glasses may be required for some nearer tasks, these implants are very popular, since they provide a very natural viewing experience with improved contrast sensitivity and fewer side effects than many other types of implants.

The upgrade from a traditional lens implant to a multifocal or EDOF implant is not covered by insurance. Our physicians and counselors will help you decide which implant best suits your lifestyle.