What Choice of Lenses are Available in Cataract Surgery?

When you know that you need cataract surgery to improve your vision, you have no doubt been informed about the procedure. However, there are many different choices you can make about the type of lens you receive during the surgery. Making the right decision can be a little overwhelming and confusing.

 This easy guide will explain the different options and help you choose the right Intraocular Lens (IOL)

What Is an Intraocular Lens?

An IOL is an artificial, tiny lens made of a type of plastic material such as silicone or acrylic. It is coated with a substance that shields the eyes from ultraviolet light. During cataract surgery, an intraocular lens (IOL) replaces your natural cataract lens. 

What Are the Different Types of Intraocular Lenses?


The monofocal lens can be set at a single range, either at a close, medium or far distance. For example, you may choose to have it set at a close, comfortable reading distance. Or you may prefer a focus at a medium distance for a computer screen. Alternatively, your choice could have it set further out at a driving distance.

Note that a monofocal lens can only correct one area of your vision and when you try to see further or nearer than your set distance, your vision will probably be blurry and you will need to wear glasses for such tasks.


As the name implies, a multi-focal lens allows clear vision at a range of distances. This lens gives you the most visual flexibility and is helpful if you want to see clearly at all distances—near, distant and intermediate—without wearing extra glasses. With the advantage of the different focusing distances comes the possibility of adverse effects, such as glare and a halo effect around lights. Because some individuals are more sensitive to this than others, not everyone can use multi-focal lenses comfortably.


Toric lenses are needed for people with astigmatism. This condition results when the cornea or the lens inside the eye has an uneven shape. The eye's curvature is irregular, and light entering the eye refracts at several focus points rather than at a single focal point. Toric versions of lenses are available for both monofocal and multi-focal use. They correct astigmatism, along with short-sightedness and long-sightedness.

Which IOL Should You Choose?

The IOL you select ultimately depends on your unique lifestyle characteristics and particular visual needs and is a very personal decision. Some  points to consider:

  • If your job involves computer work, perhaps a monofocal middle-distance lens would be your best option.
  • If you do a lot of night driving, it is probably best to avoid a multifocal lens because of glare and reflection issues.

For more information, contact a clinic to see if cataract surgery is right for you.

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Tips For Getting Young Kids To Keep Their Glasses On When I found out my toddler needed glasses, I wondered how I would ever get him to keep them on, and my fears were validated when my son decided they belonged in his dress-up box. A lot of trial and error and creative thinking were required to finally get to the point where my son would happily wear his glasses all day, and I felt relieved his eye health was being supported. I started this blog to share my tips with other parents whose child struggles to understand the importance of wearing glasses that have been prescribed for them. I hope you find my blog useful.




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