Implantable Contact Lenses (ICL) are made of Collamer, an innovative material that combines collagen and polymer to provide a more natural and biocompatible lens and an incredible quality of vision for patients that are nearsighted. The small lens is inserted into the eye for sharp, clear vision. Vision correction with the ICL is meant to be permanent, but it is also removable.  This means that the procedure is completely reversible if necessary.


Benefits of the Implantable Contact Lens

Extensive research and development preceded the introduction of the Visian ICL now over 20 years ago. It is now being enjoyed by more than 1,000,000 eyes worldwide. The satisfaction rate among patients is extremely high – above 99%. Some of the key benefits of the ICL include:

● Significant vision improvement
● 99% patient satisfaction
● Over 1 million procedures performed worldwide
● Quick results
● Can be removed, if needed
● Offers UV protection
● Undetectable once in place
● Can treat astigmatism and myopia
● May be an option for patients who are not candidates for other vision
correction procedures, like LASIK or PRK
● Does not cause dry eye syndrome, which can be a side effect of laser vision
● Provides excellent night vision

Who is a Good Candidate for Implantable Contact Lens Implants?

ICLs act in the same way that traditional contact lenses do. They are a good option for people with myopia (nearsightedness) and astigmatism. Also thoe that have been told they are not a candidate for laser vision correction, like LASIK or PRK, due to high prescriptions  or thin corneas may still be a candidate for the ICL.

ICL can achieve results as good or better than LASIK or PRK, but unlike LASIK, the ICL is implanted inside the eye.  ICL does not treat hyperopia (farsightedness). Because ICLs are removable, they do not hinder any future eye surgeries (should they be needed).

Ideal candidates for ICL implants:

  • Are between the ages of 21 and 45
  • Have myopia (nearsightedness) with or without astigmatism
  • Are not pregnant or within 6 months post-pregnancy
  • Are not candidates for LASIK (have dry eyes, severe myopia, or a thin cornea)
  • Have a stable prescription (no changes within the last year)
  • Do not have a history of eye disease

If you are a candidate for ICL, our ophthalmologists may ask you to discontinue use of contact lenses for at least 2 weeks prior to your procedure. This allows your eye prescription to be read accurately so that a proper implant is calculated before surgery.

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ICL Surgery


Before your procedure, your surgeon will perform an in-office laser peripheral iridotomy to prevent pressure build-up behind your iris. It is recommended to have a driver on the day of the peripheral iridotomy. Your vision will be a little blurry that afternoon, but you can return to work the next day.  

At the time of the procedure, your eye will be numbed using topical anesthetic drops. Occasionally, an additional mild sedative may be administered to keep you relaxed. A small corneal opening will be made through which the ICL will be inserted. ICLs are very flexible and can be folded, allowing the opening to be very small. The ICL unfolds upon insertion and then is carefully and gently placed behind the iris, where it is not noticeable to others.

The surgical procedure only takes about 10-15 minutes per eye. Patients experience very little discomfort and vision is immediately improved. Unlike traditional contacts, ICLs require no maintenance but can be removed if needed.



The ICL procedure is very quick, but someone will need to drive you home after surgery. A post-operative check is needed the day after surgery and many patients can drive themselves to this appointment. It is recommended that patients have someone available in case they are not comfortable driving yet.

While most patients experience minimal discomfort after surgery, individual cases and healing times vary. Immediately after surgery, eyes may feel sensitive, teary, or blurry for a few hours. Minimal discomfort 1-2 days after surgery is normal.

Patients can minimize discomfort by resting with their eyes closed and using prescription drops that are given by our ophthalmologists. Antibiotics, anti-inflammatory, and occasionally pressure lowering medications will promote healing in the eyes. Most patients see optimal results within a week of surgery, and the eye should be completely healed within one month.


Whether you require laser eye surgery or another procedure, you want the best care when it comes to your vision. To make quality care accessible to everyone, Milan Eye Center offers zero-down financing options with approved credit through Wells Fargo, CareCredit, and Alphaeon. We also accept all FSA/HSA plans.

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