Adjustable IOL for Cataract Surgery

August 27, 2018 — by William Goldstein
Tags: Iol Adjustable Iol Laser Cataract Surgery Reading Lens Implants

One of the most crucial steps in laser cataract surgery is the removal of the damaged, natural lens of
the eye and replacing it with an intraocular lens or IOL implant. The IOL mimics the function of
the natural lens of the eye and aid is a vision.
Over the years, surgeons and several companies have been able to develop breakthroughs in IOL
technology. Where once IOLs were designed according to generic calculations, today IOLs can
be customized to suit the visual conditions of individuals.
Technology has aided us in developing IOLs that are as close to an individual’s natural lens as
One of the most recent breakthroughs is the Calhoun light adjustable IOL.

What is the Calhoun light adjustable IOL?

Most IOLs are highly disappointing when it comes to refractive power. The refractive power of
the human eye is responsible for refracting the light that enters the eye and aids in focused
A new IOL called the Calhoun IOL, developed by the company, Calhoun Vision seems to have
an answer to this problem. The IOL is currently in clinical trials and is showing very promising
The Calhoun IOL is essentially an adjustable light lens that allows the power of the IOL to be
adjusted according to an individual';s visual characteristics.
The lens is essentially a foldable silicone lens. The silicone makes the lens biocompatible, and
since it is foldable, the IOL can be implanted through a very small incision, thus reducing the
recovery time post-surgery. The lens is inserted after the completion of laser cataract surgery, once the entire natural lens of the eye has been removed. The difference in the Calhoun lens is that in addition to silicone, the
IOL is made of a number of sub-units of silicone that are photosensitive. These sub-units are
mobile and arranged in the form of a matrix.

How does the Calhoun light adjustable IOL work?

The Calhoun IOL works on the basis of a simple principle of a diffusion gradient. Say a portion
of the light is irradiated with the help of a UV light. Now, the silicone sub-units in the irradiated
portion of the lens gets polymerized while in the non-radiated portion of the lens, the sub-units
remain intact. As a result, there is a difference in concentration of the sub-units, and the silicone
units move from the highly concentrated area to the area with lower concentration. Such
movement mimics the refractive properties of the natural lens and allows the patient to view
objects at different distances with ease.