New breakthroughs in lens technology allow patients who have cataract surgery to choose a multi-focal lens instead of a single focus lens that often requires some patients to continue to wear glasses. The new multi-focal lenses, however, can often virtually eliminate the need for glasses.
Still other patients with multi-focal lenses will only need glasses when reading or doing close-up work.
This new multi-focal technology replaces the single-focus IOL’s (intraocular lenses) allowing for all ranges of vision: near, mid-range and distance.Drs. Melvyn Koby, David Karp, Scott Hoffman and Albert Smolyar are now making the multi-focal intraocular lenses available to their patients having cataract surgery.
Further good news is that the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services has announced that they will now allow Medicare beneficiaries to choose these more expensive lenses as long as they pay for the extra cost themselves. Doctors and Medicare patients will have the freedom to select technology to treat cataracts that is consistent with the patient’s lifestyle.
Previously, the government paid most of the price of treatment, including surgery, insertion of a traditional intraocular lens, and one pair of eye glasses or contact lenses. Doctors were not allowed to exceed Medicare’s established price for the procedure or to ask patients to make up the difference for the multifocal lens. Medicare patients couldn’t pay extra for a better lens even if they wanted to. Now the rules have changed.
Cataract surgery is generally performed on an outpatient basis using local or topical anesthesia. It is done when the patient’s daily visual needs require it.
During the procedure, the cloudy lens is removed from the eye. One method of cataract removal uses high frequency sound waves to gently break the cataract into tiny pieces. These pieces are then removed by delicate suction. Then the focusing power of the natural lens is restored by replacing it with a permanent intraocular lens implant.
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