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        In November, 2003 the FDA approved the use of the first method of surgically correcting presbyopia. The eyeonics (formerly C and C vision) Crystalens is a posterior chamber lens implant that is used to replace the human lens. Its approval was granted for lens replacement during cataract surgery. The surgery for Crystalens implantation is similiar to cataract surgery and must be done in a sterile operating room. This lens is hinged to take advantage of the eye's musculature changes that occur with natural focus. Click here for more Crystalens info.

       Another method of correction of presbyopia is with Refocus (formerly Presby Corp) presview scleral implants for scleral spacing to potentially reverse presbyopia in the human eye. In younger patients with clear lenses this method provides restoration of near focus in presbyopia with small plastic inserts in the white part of the eye to restore the space needed for focus. Scleral spacing is still under FDA investigation. Phase II clinical trials have started with FDA and New York Eye and Ear Infirmary IRB approval in December 2003 with Dr. Soloway serving as the Medical Director of Refocus, the Medical Monitor for the clinical trials and continuing his roll of principal investigator from the phase I clinical trials. Click here for more Scleral Spacing info.


Presbyopia is the normal process of aging. The natural lens in the human eye continues to add layers like rings on a tree or the layers of an onion as we grow older. This causes the lens to become larger. As the lens grows, it enlarges into the area where the focusing muscle needs to flex when it works. We become unable to focus things up close because of this loss of room around the lens. This usually occurs between the ages of 40 and 50.

Everyone experiences presbyopia, some sooner, some later. Because of this normal process, nearsighted people begin to wear bifocals in their forties, and those who never needed glasses before may require reading glasses. The one advantage to mild myopia is the ability to remove your glasses after age 40 and continue to read (your myopia effectively counteracts your presbyopia).

After having the excimer laser procedure to correct for better distance vision without glasses in each eye, you will lose this ability. You will need reading glasses for small print, like every other normally sighted person between the ages of 40 to 50. The excimer laser has no effect on your focusing muscles. Patients who are experiencing the effects of presbyopia cannot be helped directly by the excimer laser, however, there are new surgical techniques for this condition.

In March 1999, Dr. Soloway was the only doctor granted an exemption by the FDA and the Institutional Review Board at the New York Eye and Ear Infirmary to perform this surgery in the United States during clinical trials. Ask us at the time of your evaluation if you are a candidate for this method of correcting presbyopia, or click on surgical reversal of presbyopia for more information.

In November 2003, the FDA approved the first (and only) implantable lens that can restore far and near focus after cataract surgery. The eyeonics AT-45 Crystalens is able to perform this feat by using microhinges to allow it to be moved forward and back slightly in the eye by the eye muscles that are used for focusing





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