Near Vision Solutions
Slade and Baker Vision specializes in helping patients “See Young Again” by providing them with a full range of vision without the need for glasses or contact lenses. This can be accomplished with Blended Vision LASIK, the Raindrop Corneal Inlay, or with Refractive Lens Exchange using one of the Advanced Technology lens implants. Which of these procedures is best for you depends on several factors, including your age, the health of your cornea and the natural lens inside the eye, and your lifestyle preferences. An individual consultation is necessary to determine which procedure is best for you.
People with normal vision when they were young could easily shift their focus from near objects to distant objects, seeing clearly at all distances. But around the age of 40 – 45, the lens inside the eye begins to lose its ability to change focus and most people become dependent on reading glasses or bi-focal lenses to see close objects. This condition is called presbyopia.
One of the Near Vision procedures we perform is called Blended Vision. With Blended Vision, one eye is usually treated for clear distance vision while the other eye is treated for clear near vision. The visual cortex of the brain learns to only pay attention to the image that it wants to see in focus and ignore the image that is not in clear focus. Most people who have blended vision are able to see well enough at all distances to do things at any age without corrective lenses. You may be using this now with contact lenses. Most patients do very well with blended vision.
Refractive Lens Exchange
If you are over the age of 40 and interested in correcting your vision, then Refractive Lens Exchange (RLE) surgery may be a great option. As we age, everyone develops presbyopia, making it difficult to see objects up close, and the gradual stiffening and clouding of the lens eventually progresses enough to be considered a cataract. With advanced diagnostic testing, we can now better assess how much light is being scattered in a pre-cataract lens, which can help us determine whether a lens exchange would give better optical clarity than a corneal procedure such as LASIK or the Raindrop inlay. Exchanging the natural lens for a clear artificial lens can improve the overall prescription, range, and focus of vision. The surgical technique is the same as modern cataract surgery, and Slade & Baker Vision has the longest experience with laser cataract surgery as the first to perform laser cataract surgery in the United States. One of the benefits of having a lens exchange is that patients avoid experiencing degradation of their vision while their cataracts develop over time, and they will not need to have cataract surgery in the future.
Ideal RLE Candidates
- People who are presbyopic or have pre-cataract symptoms
- People who are nearsighted, farsighted, and/or have astigmatism
Raindrop® Inlay for Near Vision
If you are between 40-60 years of age, have good distance vision but struggle with near vision enough to need reading glasses or bifocals, then you may be a great candidate for the Raindrop® inlay for near vision. It is a thin, hydrogel inlay made of 80% water that is invisible to the naked eye. It is placed under a small, LASIK-type flap in one eye to slightly change the curvature of the central cornea. The new curvature enhances near vision while only minimally affecting distance vision. After implantation in the FDA approval study, for which Slade & Baker Vision performed the first surgeries, 98% of patients could read a newspaper without glasses afterward, and 88% could read fine print without glasses.(1)
1. Raindrop Near Vision Inlay Prescribing Label – ReVision Optics, Inc.