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WHAT ARE INTACS?

INtacs are a unique method for correcting mild levels of myopia. Because no corneal or eye tissue is removed during INtacs insertion, they may be removed or exchanged at a later date if desired for future monovision, or new technology.

INtacs are small semi-circular medical grade plastic inserts that are placed in the periphery of the cornea in a circumfrential manner. They reshape the center portion of the cornea, allowing it to focus images precisely on the retina.

INtacs are made from PMMA (Polymethylmethacryolate) the same material that eye surgeons have been using successfully for lens implants in the eye since the 1940's. Current uses of PMMA in eye surgery include intraocular lens implants for cataracts, glaucoma implants, and scleral expansion band implants for presbyopia.

INtacs have been approved by the FDA for the treatment of low levels of myopia. They are a non-laser alternative that can help people see better without glasses.

HOW DO INTACS WORK?



KeraVision Intacs™ corneal ring segments for Myopia (formerly known as the KeraVision® Ring) are designed to correct nearsightedness (or myopia) by flattening the curvature of the cornea. Their effect can be illustrated by the "arc shortening theory."

The theory can be illustrated by a rope suspended between two trees. Gravity exerts pressure on the rope. The rope will hang close to the ground between the two trees. When objects are inserted into the strands of the rope near both ends, the rope flattens because its length is shortened. As a result, its arc is shortened and the distance between the ground and the rope is greater.

Just as the rope is connected to the trees, the cornea is connected at two points to the lamellae. Intraocular pressure on the cornea can be compared to gravitational pressure on the rope. By inserting objects between layers of corneal stroma, the cornea's arc is shortened and flattening occurs in the center of the cornea. This arcshortening is what produces the flattening effect in both the rope and the cornea. During a brief surgical procedure, KeraVision Intacs for Myopia are inserted into a tunnel created between layers of stromal tissue. Different Intacs thicknesses are designed for different resultsthe thicker the Intacs, the greater the flattening effect and intended correction. After insertion, KeraVision Intacs are designed to remain permanently in place without maintenace, yet can be removed by a surgeon.

 

Using specially calibrated, precise instruments, INtacs are placed around the periphery of the cornea. This causes a flattening of the central portion of the cornea allowing it to focus images on the retina. Because the central portion of the cornea is not operated on, visual recovery is fast. In fact, during the FDA monitored clinical studies, about 30% of patients who had a INtacs had one line of improvement in their best vision after insertion.


INTACS™ FOR MYOPIA FAQS

Q: What are Intacs?
Q: What are the advantages of Intacs?
Q: What are Intacs made of?
Q: Who is a candidate for Intacs?
Q:What is involved in the Intacs procedure?
Q: How long does it take to recuperate?
Q: How long do Intacs stay in the eye?
Q: What if a patient's vision changes?
Q: What will this procedure cost?
Q: Can Intacs be felt once they are in place?
Q: Can they dry out or get dirty like a contact lens?
Q: Can Intacs be seen by the naked eye?


A: WHATare Intacs?

A. Intacs are a new, nonlaser surgical approach to vision correction specifically designed to correct mild myopia(nearsightedness). They provide an alternative to eyeglasses, contact lenses and surgical procedures that permanently alter the eye by cutting or removing tissue from the central optical zone. When placed in the periphery of the cornea, Intacs are intended to reshape corneal curvature without removing tissue from the optical zone, which is the critical area for clear vision. This subtle reshaping is designed to make nearsighted corneas flatter, thereby correcting vision.

The thickness of Intacs determines the flattening effect on the cornea and the amount of nearsightedness treated. In the U.S., there are three sizes of Intacs to treat people with mild nearsightedness (1.0 to 3.0 diopters, with 1 diopter or less of astigmatism). This is the largest segment of nearsighted people.

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Q. WHAT are the advantages of Intacs?

A. KeraVision® Intacs corneal ring segments are designed to provide many nearsighted people freedom from some of the inconveniences of eyeglasses and contact lenses. In clinical trials, more than half of the patients obtained 20/16 vision or better, which is considered an excellent outcome. Unlike standard surgical treatments, Intacs reshape the cornea without cutting or removing tissue from the central optical zone, the critical area for clear vision.

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Q. WHAT are Intacs made of?

A. Intacs consist of two tiny, clear, ultrathin, precisionengineered crescents made of the same medical polymer(polymethylmethacrylate, or PMMA) that has been safely used in eyes for almost 50 years for contact lenses and the intraocular lenses that cataract patients receive. Intacs are designed for permanent placement in the eye, but they also are removable.

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Q. Who is a candidate for Intacs?

A. Intacs are recommended for people 21 or older with stable vision and who have mild myopia (nearsightedness) with 1 diopter or less of astigmatism. Vision correction options should be discussed with an eye doctor, who can fully evaluate a patient's vision and answer their questions.

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Q. What is involved in the Intacs procedure?

A. Typically, patients are given a mild oral sedative and eye drops to anaesthetize or numb the eye. A tiny opening, less than 2mm, is made near the upper edge of the cornea beneath the eyelid. Intacs are inserted through this opening so that they rest between the layers of tissue in the cornea, outside the central optical zone. This treatment usually takes about 15 minutes and is performed on an outpatient basis.

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Q. How long does it take to recuperate?

A. The majority of patients notice significantly improved vision the first day after surgery. Most people resume normal activities within two or three days.

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Q. How long do Intacs stay in the eye?

A. Intacs are intended to remain permanently in place without maintenance, yet they can be easily removed by a trained ophthalmic surgeon.

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Q. What if a patient's vision changes?

A. Intacs are removable, with refractions returning to preoperative levels by three months, in most cases. Removability is an option in the event patients' vision changes with age or if they desire a newer alternative in the future.

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Q. What will this procedure cost?

A. At Vista Alliance, the cost for INtacs surgery is $5500 for both eyes. This is a fully inclusive fee that includes (among other things): The evaluation, surgery, post-operative care, initial supply of medication, andrevision if required.

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Q. Can Intacs be felt once they are in place?

A. No. Intacs are not felt because they are placed in the cornea beneath the nerve endings.

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Q. Can they dry out or get dirty like a contact lens?

A. No. Intacs are designed to remain permanently in place within the eye without maintenance.

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Q. Can Intacs be seen by the naked eye?

A. Intacs are barely noticeable to other people and their appearance in the eye is similar to a contact lens.

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