What is RLE and is it right for me?
What is Refractive Lens Exchange Surgery (RLE)?
Refractive Lens Exchange, or RLE, is a surgery that is both an alternative to LASIK surgery and a close- relative of Cataract surgery. The common factor of each of these surgeries is that they are meant to provide vision correction and are offered at our Scottsdale vision correction center.
Refractive Lens Exchange surgery is performed the same way as cataracts surgery. Like in cataract surgery, the natural crystalline lens is removed and replaced with an Intraocular lens implant, or IOL. The only difference is that the natural crystalline lens has not developed or has not fully developed cataracts yet.
The lOL that replaces the natural lens corrects the patient’s vision. This is why you may hear this procedure be called lens replacement surgery. There are many lens options available to correct distance, near and intermediate vision to reduce and sometimes eliminate your dependence on glasses. Advanced technology lenses have also been developed to allow for corrected vision at multiple distances, also known as multifocal lenses, and can even be used to correct eye conditions like astigmatism.
RLE Surgery in Scottsdale
Our surgeons in Scottsdale are some of the most experienced in the Valley. Barnet Dulaney Perkins Eye Center has also been voted the #1 Eye Care Center by Ranking Arizona for the past eight years in a row.
Refractive Lens Exchange surgery is an outpatient procedure, taking only about 10-15 minutes per eye. The recovery takes about 2-7 days to return to normal activities and about 6-12 weeks to experience complete adjustment. Please arrange for someone to drive you home after your procedure at our Scottsdale vision center. Patients will also receive a thorough post-operative appointment. We are also always able and willing to answer any questions or concerns throughout the recovery process.
Most of our Arizona patients say that RLE surgery is a life-changing experience, giving them vision they have not had in years and allowing them to do the things they love without being held back by glasses or contacts.
There are many reasons to get Refractive Lens Exchange surgery, including age and lifestyle. Deciding if RLE Surgery is right for you will require a consultation at our Scottsdale vision center with our doctors about your vision needs and desired results after surgery.
- Age: If you are past the recommended age for LASIK surgery, but have not started to develop cataracts, RLE is an alternative that allows you to get vision correction that will last a lifetime. For most, cataracts don’t develop until much later in life, making RLE a way to obtain vision correction before developing mature cataracts and eliminating the need to ever need cataract surgery.
- Minimizing Dependency on Vision Aids: As the eye ages, most will begin to need reading glasses. This is called presbyopia and is not corrected by traditional LASIK surgery. The advanced technology IOLs available for lens replacement surgery offer both distance and near vision correction to reduce the need for glasses. These lenses are also available to your during cataract surgery.
- Catering to your Lifestyle: For many patients, a reason to get RLE surgery is that having to worry about glasses and contacts gets in the way of being active or enjoying their favorite activities like enjoying the desert landscape or cruising through their Scottsdale neighborhood at night.
- Eliminating the Possibility of Developing Cataracts: Since RLE surgery removes the same lens that a cataract would form in, it eliminates the possibility that that eye would ever develop cataracts.
Hear from our real RLE patients.
Get first-hand accounts from our real RLE patients across the state of Arizona as they talk about the procedure and their experience with us at Barnet Dulaney Perkins Eye Center.