It is only normal that you should experience a certain amount of anxiety before undergoing cataract surgery. Even though cataract surgery is one of the most common and most successful surgeries performed in the United States, you may wonder if your vision will really improve as much as your doctor claims it will. You may also wonder which type of intraocular lens (IOL) is best for your vision.
Now, you can see for yourself just how clear your vision can be after cataract surgery. A new hand-held device developed in Spain called the simultaneous vision simulator, or SimVis, will give you a glimpse of your visual capabilities on the other side of surgery. Because you can choose among several types of IOLs, you want to make the best and most informed decision. The SimVis can simulate how the world will look through each type of artificial lens so you can feel confident in your choice.
“Currently, the decision on which intraocular lens is implanted during cataract surgery is typically based on the explanations and experience of the surgeon,” said Carlos Dorronsoro, one of the head researchers. “But it is difficult for patients to imagine the new visual experience provided by some of these lenses, therefore, it is very difficult to make the decision.”
When patients need to decide what type of IOL they want inserted, they must decide whether they want a monofocal lens (which creates sharp vision for far objects but blurred vision for close objects) or a multifocal lens (which focuses near and far objects on the retina, but with lower image quality and contrast). The SimVis uses an optoelectronic turntable lens that can change shape when electric current is applied. The shape of the lens can be switched quickly to simulate the clear distance vision and blurred close vision of a monofocal lens, as well as simulating the loss of image quality and contrast in a multifocal lens.
The researchers are now working on a binocular version of the SimVis that looks like a virtual reality helmet and can simulate different lenses in each eye. After the device passes clinical validations, the binocular SimVis could be available by as soon as next year (Source: Science Daily).