INTACS® Corneal Implants
INTACS are clear corneal rings that provide an alternative to laser vision correction for patients with mild myopia (nearsightedness). Made of a special biocompatible plastic that has been safely used in contact lenses and cataract surgery for nearly 50 years, INTACS are rings developed to provide rapid visual improvement. They’re inserted into the cornea to reshape the surface of the eye and improve vision.
Patients with keratoconus, a progressive eye disease where the cornea thins and starts to bulge into a cone-like shape, can’t achieve functional vision using contact lenses or eyeglasses, but INTACS will reduce or eliminate myopia and astigmatism. As light enters the eye, the cone deflects light and distorts vision. INTACS may eliminate or delay the need for a corneal transplant.
Though INTACS can flatten the cone caused by keratoconus, the implants can’t halt the progression caused by advanced keratoconus.
INTACS are designed for long-term vision correction but can be replaced with different size implants or removed. If your prescription happens to change, you have the option of replacing them. When removed, vision typically returns to the way it was before the implants within three months.
How Do INTACS Work?
To treat nearsightedness, INTACS flatten the cornea to refocus light rays as they enter the eye and improve vision. To treat keratoconus, INTACS flatten the steep part of the cornea so vision distortions are reduced.
The surgery is different depending on what kind of vision correction you need. To treat nearsightedness, INTACS will flatten the cornea so light rays refocus and vision is improved.
Before the surgery, you’ll receive anesthetizing drops in your eye and possibly a mild oral sedative so you’re comfortable throughout the procedure.
Your surgeon will create a tunnel between the layers of the corneal stroma, which is located outside the central optical zone. Your surgeon will then insert one or two of these clear corneal rings into the tunnel.
The procedure lasts for about 15 minutes and is performed on an outpatient basis. It’s important to arrange for someone to take you home after your surgery because your vision won’t be clear.
Typically, patients can see clearly as soon as the first day after surgery, but you should spend the next couple days relaxing so you eye can heal.
The results of the surgery will depend on how poor your vision was to start or the degree of your keratoconus. If you have mild keratoconus, you may not need additional vision correction. But if you have a higher degree of the disease, you may need glasses or contact lenses to improve your vision even further.
In some cases, complications could occur such as eye irritation, blepharitis (a common eyelid inflammation), or abnormal blood vessel growth in the cornea.
If you have myopia or keratoconus, INTACS corneal implants may be the right solution for you. Schedule your consultation today!