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Alcon ReSTOR Multifocal Lens FAQ

What is a multifocal lens?
What is the benefit of a multifocal lens implant?
Is the multifocal lens similar to the natural lens of the eye?
Are there any alternatives?
Are there any risks or side effects to a multifocal lens implant?
Will I see 20/20 after surgery?
Will I need glasses after surgery?
Is a multifocal lens recommended for every patient?
Why don’t you recommend the lens for patient who has had refractive surgery?
What if I don’t see 20/20 without glasses after surgery?
Why doesn’t Medicare or insurance pay for a multifocal lens?
Can I have multifocal lens later if I decide not to do it now?
Can I be implanted with a multifocal lens in one eye only?
Will I need multifocal lenses in both eyes?
Will it take longer for my eye to recover from surgery?

What is a multifocal lens?

Traditional monofocal lenses, including lens implants, focus light to only one point in space. A multifocal lens has more than one point of focus. A bifocal, which is a type of multifocal, has two points of focus: one at distance and the other at near. It allows you to see both near and far.

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What is the benefit of a multifocal lens implant?

A multifocal lens implant focuses light from a distance and near simultaneously. This feature addresses both distance and near vision and makes the recipient less dependent on glasses or contact lenses.

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Is the multifocal lens similar to the natural lens of the eye?

No. The natural lens of a young person changes shape in order to produce a change in focus. As a person ages, the natural lens becomes more rigid and functions more like a monofocal lens. Lens implants do not change shape. A multifocal lens compensates for the eye’s inability to change shape by allowing the eye to see at distance and near simultaneously through the same optic.

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Are there any alternatives?

The primary alternative to multifocal lens implantation is monofocal lens implantation.

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Are there any risks or side effects to a multifocal lens implant?

Implantation of a multifocal lens is associated with all the risks and side effects of cataract surgery. In addition, certain side effects are more likely with a multifocal lens than with a monofocal lens. There is a 25% chance you will have glare and halos around lights, most noticeably at night. These effects may interfere with your ability to drive comfortably at night.

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Will I see 20/20 after surgery?

We hope so, but cannot guarantee it. Our goal is to achieve the best possible outcome. However, glasses may be required for certain activities

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Will I need glasses after surgery?

If you receive a multifocal lens there is a good chance you won’t need glasses. 80% of patients implanted with the ReSTOR lens in the FDA clinical trial did not need glasses after surgery for distance or near vision. The odds of becoming spectacle-free are better if your corneal astigmatism is low and your eyes are healthy.

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Frequently asked questions about the Alcon ReSTOR Multifocal Lens

No. It is not recommended for patients who were previously implanted with a monofocal lens in one eye, patients with a history of corneal refractive surgery (RK, PRK, LASIK, etc) or eyes with reduced visual potential, such as those with macular degeneration or diabetic retinopathy.

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Why don’t you recommend the lens for patient who has had refractive surgery?

Lens power calculation is not very accurate in eyes that have had corneal refractive surgery. Precise power calculation is essential to good outcomes with a multifocal lens.

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What if I don’t see 20/20 without glasses after surgery?

We will prescribe glasses or contact lenses to optimize your vision.

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Why doesn’t Medicare or insurance pay for a multifocal lens?

While Medicare and insurance will cover the cost of a standard lens implant, they will not pay for the “portion” of a deluxe implant that imparts multifocality.

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Can I have multifocal lens later if I decide not to do it now?

Cataract surgery cannot be redone; multifocal or monofocal must be chosen before surgery.

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Can I be implanted with a multifocal lens in one eye only?

Yes, you can as long as your other eye has a clear natural lens or an early cataract. If your other eye already has an implant, you are not a good candidate for a multifocal lens implant.

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Will I need multifocal lenses in both eyes?

A multifocal lens should be implanted in both eyes ultimately.

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Will it take longer for my eye to recover from surgery?

Recovery from cataract surgery is the same whether you receive a monofocal lens or a multifocal lens.

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