Phakic IOLs

Improving your Quality of LIFE by improving your Quality of VISION


Phakic IOL's Summary

Sometimes laser vision correction is not the best option to provide the best vision. Phakic IOL's are then frequently the best option

Phakic IOL's
Phakic IOL's are implantable contact lenses placed inside the eye during a short surgery in the hospital. They can be placed in front of the iris or coloured part (Artisan IOL) or behind the iris (Visian ICL)
Phakic IOLs (Implantable Contact Lenses)


These lenses are placed inside the eye without the natural lens being removed. One can think of them as an implantable contact lens.

Phakic IOLs are clear implantable lenses that are surgically placed either between the cornea and the iris (the colored portion of your eye) or just behind the iris, without removing your natural lens. Phakic lenses enable light to focus properly on the retina for clearer vision without corrective eyewear.


  • May be performed on Patients who are not good Laser Candidates
  • Reversible procedure


  • Myopia (Short-sightedness)
  • Hypermetropia (Far-sightedness)
  • Astigmatism

Phakic IOL's Explanation

Learn about Visian ICL

Arrange a Consultation

Please be advised that you are not expected to be familiar with all the information below nor are you expected to decide which procedure to have before having consulted with us. Please feel free to book a consultation and get advice on which procedure is best for you and get all the relevent information explained to you.

Phakic IOL's

Phakic IOL's are implantable contact lenses placed inside the eye during a short surgery in the hospital. They can be placed in front of the iris or coloured part (Artisan IOL) or behind the iris (Visian ICL)


1) Staar Visian ICL

The Visian ICL provides excellent vision for short-sightedness, long-sightedness and astigmatism when laser vision correction is not the best solution. The ICL fits in behind the iris / pupil and sits in front of the natural lens. It is completely invisible to the naked eye and almost invisible to the examining ophthalmologist too. This is the most modern phakic IOL.

See more at Visian Info

Visian ICL

Learn more about the Visian ICL

2) Artisan IOL

The Artisan IOL is an iris-clip lens that clips onto the iris. It has been correcting vision problems for decades. This is a procedure whereby an artificial lens is implanted into the eye in front of the pupil. The eye’s own natural lens is left undisturbed. This technique is used in patients who wish to eliminate the need for glasses or contact lenses and whose refractive error is so large that it falls beyond the scope of laser surgery. It is possible to enhance one’s result with laser surgery should a small residual refractive error be present.

An ARTISAN® lens is a “contact lens” that is implanted in the eye. Therefore, you will no longer be dependent on spectacles or contact lenses.

See more at Ophtec

How the Artisan works

The Artisan treatment

The Treatment

With an ARTISAN® lens

The ARTISAN® lens is a small “contact lens” that’s not placed on, but in the eye. The lens is positioned in the anterior chamber in front of the iris. It will stay here for the rest of your life. Only a specially trained surgeon can do the treatment. First you are given a general anaesthetic after which a small incision is made in your cornea. The lens is inserted through this opening in the anterior chamber. When the lens is positioned exactly in front of the pupil it is fixed to the iris with two clips on each side of the lens. After the treatment you will be able to see immediately (blurry initially) but your vision is at its best after about one to three weeks in most cases. The treatment takes ±30 minutes and with the standard care before and after the surgery the total stay at the hospital is about two hours. The second eye is often treated when the wound in the first eye has healed; this would usually be two to three weeks after the first eye.

Artisan procedure explained

Artisan Procedure Explained

How the Artisan IOL works

The Product

The ARTISAN® lens

The lens was developed by Prof Dr Jan G.F Worst, eye surgeon from The Netherlands. He’s the founder of this unique method to attach a lens in the eye with two clips on the Iris. The clips are meant to fixate the lens and they’re attached when the lens is centralized in front of the pupil where it remains permanently. The Iris will not be damaged in any way although a triangular incision is made at the 12h00 position to avoid high pressure from building inside the eye. If necessary the lens can easily be detached to be replaced or removed.

The Material

The ARTISAN® lens is made of Perspex (PMMA), an artificial material that’s completely accepted by the human body. This became clear when pilots of the 2nd World War walked around for several years with pieces of this material in their eyes due to shattered cockpits.



You are a candidate for an ARTISAN® lens when you meet the following conditions:

  • Your refractive error is between: -3 and –23,5 diopters with or without cylinder error +1 and +12 diopter with or without cylinder error.
  • You are between 18 and 60 years of age.
  • You are in good health.
  • You do not have other eye diseases.
  • Your refraction has been stable for at least one year.
  • You are not pregnant or breast feeding.
  • You are convinced you want to undergo this procedure.

If you meet these conditions you are a candidate for the pre-examination. Here you will learn whether your eyes are suitable for the ARTISAN® lenses.


In every medical intervention there is a small risk factor to consider. This also applies to the ARTISAN® lens where there can be complications in spite of the best intentions to offer a flawless treatment. Because we are dealing with a healthy eye, apart from the refraction, it is essential that you consider the risks before making a decision. The risks could be:

  • Infection
  • Temporary elevated eye pressure
  • Dislocated Artisan Lens
    Most of these complications can be treated post-operatively, but this is not always the case. Your quality of vision can get worse. Your consultant can inform you about the risks.

Cases of glare or halo’s in the dark

After an ARTISAN® implantation you might be bothered by glare or halos at night. People who wear glasses or contact lenses are familiar with this phenomenon. It has to do with rays or light that reflect on the rim of the lens. Because the pupil is larger in the dark, these reflections sometimes enter the eye. The majority of people adapt to this after a while and don’t consider it to be a problem.

What to Expect

The Procedure

  • You have a consultation with a consultant and learn all about the implantation.
  • With the aid of a clinical examination it is determined if you are suitable for a lens implantation
  • Special tests are performed (Endothelial Cell Count / IOL Master measurements).
  • You sign a consent form
  • You receive the treatment
  • You return within the following year for a number of check ups

Pre-examination around an ARTISAN® implantation.

To determine whether your eyes are suitable for a lens implantation your eyes will be screened thoroughly. A so called pre-examination is of great importance in order to avoid possible risks so in this way you can take a well thought out decision. It’s important to remove:

  • Soft contact lenses one week prior to the examination
  • Hard lenses two weeks prior to the examination

What can you expect from such a pre-examination?

During this examination you’ll be invited to tell the doctor about the condition of your eyes and your health in general. Then the desired correction will be determined very accurately after which some additional measurements will be performed like: the length of your eye, your pupil diameter and your eye pressure. It is also important to have a “close look” at your eye with the slit lamp in order to carefully characterize possible disorders. Not only superficially but also inside the eye. This test is painless but your eyes can be somewhat irritated afterwards. When all the appropriate information is analyzed the consultant will make the final decision as to whether your eye is suitable for a lens implantation.

The Procedure


A treatment with an ARTISAN® lens will only happen if the pre-examination shows that your eyes are suited for this and if you meet the other conditions. It is a day treatment where we will treat one eye at a time. A nurse will meet you when you arrive. The nurse puts drops in your eyes in order to reduce the pupil size and he/she will explain the procedure with you and help you to prepare for surgery. After you are asleep under general anesthesia, a little cut is made in the sclera / cornea through which the lens is inserted in the anterior chamber. When the lens is right in front of the pupil it is attached to the Iris. A little fold of Iris is pushed into the clips of the lens. In this way the lens will stay in its place. The small incision is sutured and the surgery is over. After the procedure, which lasts about 30 minutes, the eye is covered with an eye patch and you are taken to the recovery room. A nurse again looks after your well being and will inform you of what you should and shouldn’t do until the next day when you come back for the first check up.

The Following Day

The day after the treatment you’re allowed to take off the eye patch yourself. After this you will be asked to put some eye drops in the eye so that the consultant is able to do his check up in a clear eye later that day. You will be able to see with the eye immediately but your vision of course will not be perfect.

Rules After Treatment

You can go about your daily life again if and when you feel able to. One or two days of rest should be sufficient before getting back to your activities. In order to let the eye heal properly and to avoid complications it’s important to follow certain rules for the first few days after the treatment:

– For up to 1 week after the treatment you should sleep with an eye patch, in order to avoid rubbing your eye and to avoid contact with any bedding materials.

  • You should put drops in your eyes for the first three weeks after the surgery to avoid inflammatory reaction.
  • For the first few days after the surgery you should avoid doing things that increase the pressure on your eye.
  • For the first few days after the treatment you will receive tablets and drops to avoid any increased eye pressure.
  • You are not allowed to wear make up the first week after surgery.
  • You are not allowed to go swimming for the first 2 weeks after surgery.

The End Calculation

If your eyes are suitable for a lens implantation and you are convinced to have this treatment then you will be asked to sign a consent form. The declaration will state that you:

  • Give permission to have this treatment and that this is your free will
  • Have been informed sufficiently concerning the treatment
  • Have been informed sufficiently about the possible risks and the advantages and disadvantages of lens implantations
  • After signing this consent you can make an appointment to have the first eye treated.

Post-operative Check-up

During the first year after the treatment some post-operative check-ups will take place. These will be discussed in more detail at your consultation with your surgeon.


From our Facebook Page

A huge thanks to Dr Cummings and all the staff. My daughter had had very limited vision (-14.50) and following an ICL implant her vision is now perfect… Incredible. We are so grateful for the skill and all the kindness we experienced.
Gillian S.


Procedure Costs

*All Lens Implant Surgery Prices On Application

The costs are determined by a number of factors including:

  • the procedure of choice
  • the precise lens recommended by your surgeon
  • other hospital costs

Please contact the Wellington Eye Clinic for more details.

Arrange a Consultation

Trust your eyes to the surgeon who has performed 10,000 or more procedures, not 100. Trust the Wellington Eye Clinic. If you are interested in a life without glasses or contact lenses please feel free to book a consultation with one of our surgeons who will advise what is best for you.