Intraocular lenses (IOLs) are devices that are used to replace your natural lens in the eye if you have developed cataracts that have caused poor vision. PanOptix Trifocal lenses are a newer form of this lens and allow for three ranges of clearer vision. This type of lens has been in use in over 70 different countries but was just approved by the FDA to use in the United States in 2019. Prior to this approval, medical studies did show that these lenses were effective and safe and about 99% of the trial participants reported that they were also very satisfied with the results. There are different IOL lenses but a monofocal lens is the most common to be used after removing cataracts. However, trifocal lenses are an important addition to the list and you can work with your ophthalmologist to decide which type of IOL is right for your situation.
1. What Are PanOptix Trifocal Lenses?
An IOL is a small artificial lens that replaces damaged natural lenses in your eye. These devices are used to restore vision when cataracts become significant enough that they prevent you from seeing clearly, even when you are using corrective eyewear such as glasses. While many different types of IOLs are monofocal, there are some that are trifocal. Monofocal lenses do not allow for changes in distance vision as your natural lens would. Many people will have cataract surgery to remove just one natural lens at a time so replacing this lens with one that is single distance is not usually a big deal and doesn’t damage the ability to see. However, those who are choosing multifocal IOLs can have near and distance vision in the eye at the same time, which can be a big advantage.
The new option of PanOptix Trifocal lenses allows three vision distances instead of just one or two that you may get with other types of IOLs. These lenses replace natural lenses in the eyes that have been darkened or clouded too much by cataracts. They can also be used for more than just cataracts. They can be used by people who have blurry vision because of an irregularly shaped cornea.
Theses lenses are made from hydrophilic acrylic. They have 26 diffractive rings around the entire devices. Instead of just using other types of IOLs designed to provide both distance and near vision, PanOptix Trifocal lenses give you improved near and intermediate vision, along with even better distance vision.
2. There Are Three Clear Vision Distances
One of the main benefits of PanOptix Trifocal lenses is that you can get better vision. These three ranges of vision include far or distance vision, intermediate vision, and near vision. Intermediate clear vision tasks include things such as shaving, applying your makeup, and working on a computer. Near clear vision tasks include sewing, writing, and reading.
These lenses work to bend light to focus on the retina. Cataracts that form in the natural lenses will actually block light from hitting the entire retina or filter the light in a way that your brain doesn’t process a clear image. Not many people notice cataracts changing vision for the first couple of years and instead the condition then eventually spreads around enough of your lens that your vision is noticeably obscured. Once your vision is obscured enough your ophthalmologist or optometrist will then recommend surgery. Since older adults are the ones that are more likely to undergo cataract surgery, they want better options for improved vision that can support the lifestyle they are used to. These individuals are already used to tasks such as computer use, reading, and driving.
The new PanOptix Trifocal lenses enable better vision results for anyone who is 22 years and older that needs their natural lens replaced. With better sight, this also allows for more independence. These lenses also lower the effects of presbyopia. Presbyopia is the inability to see up close to perform small tasks or read due to the effects of the cornea aging.
Understanding the three clear vision distances is easier when you focus on the different types of lenses that can be used. A monofocal lens will allow for the clearest vision at one distance. It is uniform all the way through and only has one refractive power. These lenses are only going to focus light coming from near or a distance and can’t do both. A multifocal lens has rings circling outward from the center. While there are many different types available, certain kinds have more advantages for distance. When these are implanted in the eye during cataract surgery, the brain and eye adjust to look through the correct part and it depends what you are focusing on. Trifocal IOLs will offer the best vision when compared to multifocal lenses.
3. Benefits of the PanOptix Trifocal Lens
Among other trifocal options, the PanOptix Trifocal lenses are some of the more effective options. These are made with ultraviolet and blue light filtering material that will protect your eyes from damage from screens and sunlight. With PanOptix Trifocal lenses, you get better image quality over other leading trifocals. With an intermediate focal point of 60 centimeters, you get enhanced closer and middle vision when compared to other brands.
One of the main benefits of PanOptix Trifocals lenses is easier reading, without having to also wear reading glasses. With other similar trifocal brands, reading can be harder because of the intermediate vision. However, PanOptix allows for sharper middle and close vision to make reading and up-close tasks much easier.
4. FDA Approval for PanOptix Trifocal Lens and Medical Studies
While the United States just recently got approval for PanOptix Trifocal lenses, other countries have been offering these for years.
In one main clinical trial, 243 patients had this lens or a control lens. Out of the 129 patients that got the PanOptix Trifocal Lenses, 127 received the lens in both eyes. Two of those received the lens in just one eye. Six months after the lenses were used, the average corrected vision for both groups was 20/20. However, in the PanOptix group, the intermediate vision was better and was at 20/25 while the control group was at 20/40. Near vision results for those that got the PanOptix lens were even better. There were no safety concerns reported during the study, showing that these lenses have the best results with minimal risks and side effects.
In a 2017 study, there were a few mild side effects that were reported when a trifocal lens was used to replace the natural lens in someone’s non-dominant eye. These effects were some visual distances, halos around lights, and some visual acuity issues.
5. Are PanOptix Trifocal Lenses the Right Ones for You?
The best way to determine if PanOptix Trifocal lenses are right for you is to work with your ophthalmologist or optometrist. If you are younger and are still working, then you may like the added benefits of three vision distances so you can commute to work and perform your job. If you are older, there are still benefits with this option so you can enjoy retirement and maintain independence. Usually, they will be recommended for patients that work on computers but also want to enjoy other hobbies that need you to have close focus.
Since the device is just newly improved, there can be concerns about the insurance coverage options and the costs. It’s best to work with an eye care provider to know the options in order to make the best decision.
It’s important to note that there are many benefits of these lenses, but they may not be suited for every individual. You should always seek in-person medical treatment. Call Florida Eye Specialists and Cataract Institute in order to see if these lenses are right for you.