What Happens During a Crystalens Procedure?

What is Crystalens and what happens during a Crystalens procedure? Well, Crystalens is a type of lens implant for your eye. In other words, it replaces your natural eye lens with an artificial eye lens. It is often used to replace lens that have become rigid and/or damaged due to cataracts, age and/or other eye conditions. This lens implant mimics your natural eye lens. In fact, your natural eye muscles control the Crystalens implant so that you can focus on objects close to you and those further away. If you would like to learn more about what happens during a Crystalens procedure – you have come to the right place. This article will provide you with an in-depth explanation of the Crystalens procedure.

Listed below are the various steps involved in the Crystalens procedure:

Crystalens Procedure

Crystalens are often used to replace lens that have become clouded and/or damaged as a result of age, cataracts and other eye conditions. At the beginning of the Crystalens implant surgery, an ophthalmologist places several numbing drops into your eye. He/she then makes a tiny incision along the edge of your cornea, the clear part of your eye that protects your iris, pupil and anterior chamber. The ophthalmologist then washes away your natural eye lens with a specially-formulated eye rinse.

Once your lens has been removed, a Crystalens implants is placed over your eye. This surgery normally takes approximately 20 to 30 minutes to perform. Following the surgery, you may be prescribed a painkiller to relieve any pain and/or discomfort. It is important to note that in most cases, this procedure is painless. For maximum results, it is best to have the surgery performed on both eyes – one eye at a time with a 2-week break in between surgeries.

Recovery Period

Thankfully, you should recover fairly quickly. In fact, you should be able to resume most of your normal activities within a couple of hours after the procedure. However, you should not try to drive or return to work for approximately 72 hours, following the surgery. Contact your physician for further instructions. It is also important to note that your ophthalmologist may request a follow-up visit 24 to 48 hours after the surgery to make sure that your eye is healing properly.

You should notice a positive change in your vision immediately after the surgery. In addition, you may experience some eye redness and sensitivity so it is important that you refrain from straining your eyes. Also, avoid lifting heavy objects because they can put pressure on your eyes. Moreover, for the first few weeks, following the surgery, refrain from wearing eye makeup and swimming. Eye makeup and swimming pool water tend to harbor bacteria that can infect your eyes. Lastly, stay out of the sun or wear protective sunglasses when you go outside (for at least 6 months). Crystalens only partially shields your eyes from UV rays so it is important that you take steps to protect them from sun damage.

Side-Effects and Complications

There are some side-effects and complications associated with Crystalens implant surgery. It is important that you fully understand these possible effects before scheduling the procedure. Although lens replacement surgery is a common procedure and safe for the majority of people, it does carry some risks. Some of the side-effects and complications include: irreversible vision loss, hemorrhaging, temporary or permanent blindness, the loss of your eye, infection, visual impairment, dislocation (i.e. when the Crystalens implant become separated from your eye).

If the Crystalens becomes dislocated, additional surgeries will be required to reattach it. Moreover, chronic health conditions like high blood pressure, autoimmune disorders, chronic infections, blood disorders and diabetes carry higher risks of side-effects and complications. It is important to note that side-effects and complications are rare. In fact, according to the University of Rochester Medical Center (2014), approximately 98% of people who have Crystalens implant surgery have no side-effects or complications.


Crystalens. (2014). The Crystalens procedure. Retrieved from http://www.crystalens.com/en-us/thecrystalensprocedure.aspx

University of Rochester Medical Center. (2014). Crystalens IOL. Retrieved from http://www.urmc.rochester.edu/eye-institute/lasik/procedures/crystalens-iol.cfm