You are not alone if you are fed up with battling with glasses and contact lenses. According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), about 2.2 billion people worldwide have visual impairments. Amongst them, you can find most people opting for either LASIK or ICL eye operation to help them see clearly and comfortably.
While both of these operations are efficient in correcting eyesight, their techniques differ, and each has its own set of advantages and disadvantages. This blog is all about ICL vs LASIK!
Essential differences between ICL and LASIK are mentioned in this blog article so you can make an informed decision and select the best treatment option for you. So, let’s begin!
- LASIK uses a laser to reshape the cornea. At the same time, ICL involves implanting a soft, flexible lens behind the iris and in front of the natural lens.
- LASIK is ideal for those with mild to moderate refractive errors and has a fast recovery time, while ICL is better suited for those with thin corneas or severe refractive problems and provides UV protection.
- ICL is more expensive and has a longer recovery time.
- Ultimately, the best option depends on your individual needs and circumstances.
- If you’re considering either LASIK or ICL, it’s crucial to speak with a skilled ophthalmologist to determine which procedure is right for you.
LASIK vs ICL – An Overview
To give you a quick overview of the two procedures, let’s compare ICL and LASIK head-to-head:
|Intra Collamer Lens (ICL) Surgery
|Laser-Assisted In Situ Keratomileusis (LASIK) Surgery
|Implanted behind the iris and in front of the natural lens
|Reshape cornea to correct vision
|Suitable for patients with thin corneas or extreme refractive errors
|Ideal for patients with mild to moderate refractive errors
|A permanent solution, but it can be removed if needed
|A permanent solution that cannot be reversed
|Does not cause dry eyes
|May cause temporary dry eyes
|Provides UV protection for the eye
|No UV protection
|Costlier than LASIK
|Cheaper than ICL
What Is LASIK Surgery?
LASIK is a common refractive surgery for treating nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism. The surgeon uses a laser to reshape the cornea, which is the transparent front section of the eye, to enhance vision during LASIK.
Advantages of LASIK Surgery
LASIK is a fast and painless operation with several advantages. Here are some of them:
- Quick Recovery: Patients have minimal to no discomfort
- High Success Rate: Capable of correcting a wide variety of refractive problems
- No Bandages or Sutures Required: Can be performed on both eyes on the same day
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Drawbacks of LASIK Surgery
While LASIK is a safe and successful procedure, it does have the following disadvantages:
- Temporary Dry Eyes: Not recommended for those with thin corneas or severe refractive problems
- Cannot Be Reversed: If your vision changes over time, you may need to wear glasses or contacts again in the future.
- Does Not Give UV Eye Protection: Even if you’ve had the procedure done, it’s still important to wear sunglasses or other protective eyewear when you’re outdoors.
What is ICL Surgery?
In ICL (Implantable Collamer Lens) surgery, a soft, flexible lens is implanted below the iris and in front of the native lens of the eye. To rectify refractive flaws, the lens works in tandem with the eye’s natural lens.
Advantages of ICL
ICL surgery offers various advantages, including:
- Does Not Cause Dry Eyes: Appropriate for those with thin corneas or severe refractive problems.
- Provides UV Eye Protection: Crucial for prolonged eye health.
- A long-term solution Reversible Solution: No Need for touch-ups every few years like you might with other types of eye surgeries. ICL removal is a straightforward process.
Drawbacks of ICL Surgery
While ICL is a safe and successful procedure, it does have certain disadvantages. Here are some of them:
- More Expensive Than LASIK: While ICL can provide excellent results, it typically comes with a higher price tag than LASIK or other vision correction options.
- May Induce Cataracts: It’s important to discuss this risk with your doctor and weigh it against the benefits of the procedure.
- Longer Recovery Time: Compared to other vision correction procedures, ICL surgery may require a more extended recovery period.
7 Major Differences Between ICL and LASIK
Now that you have an idea of what these surgeries entail, let’s take a closer look at the eight significant differences between ICL and LASIK.
ICL is a reversible surgery. In other words, if you don’t like the results or have any difficulties as a result of the treatment, the lens can be removed and replaced. LASIK, on the other hand, is a permanent procedure. The cornea cannot be reshaped after it has been altered.
ICL has built-in UV protection, so you won’t need to wear sunglasses as often. LASIK, on the other hand, provides no UV protection.
Dry eyes are another typical adverse effect of LASIK that can be unpleasant and even painful. ICL, on the other hand, has no such negative impact.
The endothelium of the cornea can occasionally be injured during ICL surgery. Also, there is an increased risk of infection since the surgeon needs to go inside the eye to implant the lens. So, while ICL may be a good option for certain people, LASIK may be a better option if you want a surface-based procedure.
After ICL, you should be able to resume your routine activities within a few days. LASIK, on the other hand, can take a week or more to recover fully.
LASIK can cause transient night vision difficulties. However, these symptoms usually resolve themselves within a few weeks. ICL has no adverse effects on night vision.
ICL is usually more expensive than LASIK.
ICL vs LASIK: Which Surgery Is Better?
The answer is dependent on your individual demands and circumstances. Both ICL and LASIK are safe and successful refractive surgery procedures.
However, ICL may be a better choice if you have thin corneas or severe refractive problems. If you want a quick and painless operation with immediate results, LASIK may be a better alternative. To determine which procedure is best for you, speak with a skilled ophthalmologist.
Our skilled surgeons and staff are committed to delivering personalized care and competent assistance during the procedure. Don’t let bad vision limit you any longer. Make an appointment with us and take the first step towards clear eyesight.
Aaron Barriga is the online marketing manager for Insight Vision Center. With a knack for understanding medical procedures, and an interest in eye and vision health, Aaron loves to share what he knows and what he learns. He blogs to inform readers about the latest eye care technology and other topics related to eye care, especially LASIK.