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Subspecialties Refractive

It Was a Very Good Year (for IOLs)

The year of 2018 was, without any doubt, a fruitful one in terms of ophthalmology research. Regarding the specific area of intraocular lenses (IOL) – my area of expertise – I believe one of the most interesting and potentially ground-breaking advancements can be found in research on adjustable IOLs. Perfect Lens LLC (Irvine, CA, USA) has developed a femtosecond laser system for IOL power adjustment based on the concept of refractive index shaping (RIS) (1,2). It uses green light (520 nm), and operates with energy levels that are below the threshold for ablation or cuts. IOL power changes are obtained through laser-induced chemical reactions in targeted areas of the optic substance, with increase in hydrophilicity and decrease in refractive index, while the laser builds a RIS lens within the treated area. The technology can be applied to any commercially available hydrophobic or hydrophilic acrylic IOL, as a special IOL material is not necessary. Power adjustment is noninvasive, fast, and can be done under topical anesthesia. Multiple adjustments can be performed, as they change a very thin layer within the IOL optic substance, and they are potentially reversible.

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About the Author

Liliana Werner

Liliana Werner is Professor of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences, and Co-Director of the Intermountain Ocular Research Center, at John A. Moran Eye Center, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT, USA.

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