Premium lenses are not a necessary requirement for cataract surgery. However, most patients will have a intraocular lens (IOL) placed inside the eye at the time of cataract surgery. It is easy for patients and doctors to get caught up in “the next new thing”. However, the quality of the standard monofocal intraocular lenses covered by Medicare and private insurers provide excellent vision for millions of patients. There may be particular reasons why you may want or need a special intraocular lens that has costs not covered by Medicare or private insurance, but keep in mind that these need to be individualized decisions. What may be great for your friend or family member, may not be the right choice for you. Some of these lenses have visual side effects that you may not appreciate until after you’ve had surgery. Intraocular lenses to correct astigmatism are generally more successful and better tolerated by a variety of patients than are intraocular lenses to get rid of reading glasses or bifocals. Exchange of some premium lenses for standard monofocal intraocular lenses can sometimes be difficult. Both the specific conditions of your eyes and costs of the options should be considered.
If you have been diagnosed with cataracts and are considering cataract surgery, the options of lenses, and the choice of surgeon, I encourage you to take some time to learn about me and my recommendations for cataract surgery. I’m happy to see you in clinic to work on which options are best for you.