Laser Eye Surgery for Presbyopia

Presbyopia is the natural age-related decline of the eye’s ability to focus at near. For most people, the effects start becoming noticeable at around the age of 45. It is not uncommon for difficulties to manifest at an earlier age. The lens inside the eye is a central nucleus, surrounded by lens fibres, all contained within the lens capsule. In a young eye, the lens is flexible and able to adjust its shape to focus on near objects. The ciliary muscle controls this function.

From birth, lens fibres form around the nucleus. This results in the lens stiffening and becoming less flexible. It is when we begin to notice our eyes don’t focus up close that this is then considered presbyopia.

In the past, vision correction options were limited for people looking for a solution to presbyopia. Laser eye surgery is traditionally employed to address issues associated with distance vision. Such as myopia (short-sightedness), hyperopia (long-sightedness), and astigmatism.

If a patient is, for example, both hyperopic and presbyopic. Traditional methods did not always provide the freedom from glasses or contacts that they may have been hoping for.

Surgical vision correction in presbyopia

Options were previously limited to an arrangement known as monovision. This was a technique using laser eye surgery, such as LASIK or PRK, to correct one eye for distance vision and the other for near vision.

Although this works well for many people, monovision vision correction carries some disadvantages;

  • Compromised depth perception
  • Difficulties with adaptation
  • A blur zone at intermediate distances.

Laser eye surgery for presbyopia patients has now been revolutionised with the advent of Presbyond.

Presbyond Laser Eye Surgery for Presbyopia

Presbyond is like the LASIK laser eye surgery procedure. But, instead of correcting each eye for one focal distance, Presbyond performs ‘laser blended vision’. Whether both for long-distance or one for distance and one for near, as in the case of monovision. Providing a degree of distance and near vision to both eyes. Whilst also accounting for the dominant eye to optimise clarity. This helps to circumvent many of the difficulties of traditional monovision. Since both eyes are used to some degree for viewing distances, this carries less of an impact on depth perception. The blended nature of the vision correction also results in some intermediate vision. Such as for viewing desktop monitors. The concept of blended vision correction is not exclusive to laser eye surgery for presbyopia.

Multifocal contact lens trial

An important part of assessing your suitability for Presbyond is the use of a multifocal contact lens trial. Different focal zones within the contact lens simulate the visual experience you can expect from Presbyond laser eye surgery.

The brain still requires some adaptation around this new experience. As it will now be receiving a different type of visual input from both eyes with the contact lens trial. This helps to determine whether you are able to tolerate this vision.

Treatment is performed under local anaesthesia with a refractive specialist eye surgeon. A femtosecond laser is used to create a thin hinged flap of corneal tissue at the front surface of the eye. This is then set aside to give access to an excimer laser to reshape the underlying layers of the cornea. It is this reshaping process, guided by a pre-calculated computer algorithm, that sculpts the cornea in a specific way. By redirecting light passing through and providing the blended focus for each eye.

Once the cornea has been sculpted, the corneal flap is repositioned and the eye allowed to heal. Patients are given a protective eye shield, medicated eye drops, and post-operative care instructions. The ophthalmologist is likely to perform at least a couple of review examinations to ensure the eye is healing as expected.

After your surgery

Patients who undergo Presbyond laser blended vision treatment often find their vision is significantly improved. Both for distance and near, as soon as one or two days after surgery. Vision continues to improve and stabilise over the following weeks. Resulting in a reduced dependency on glasses and contact lenses for all activities.

Are you experiencing the inconvenient effects of presbyopia? Book your complimentary initial consultation with Eye Laser Specialists.

Calling us 0390 700 910 or arranging an appointment online.

Note: Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. Before proceeding, you should seek a second opinion from a qualified health practitioner.

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About the expert

Dr Anton van Heerden, MBCHB; FRANZCO
Ophthalmologist & Laser Eye Surgeon

Based in Melbourne, but with a reputation that transcends borders, Dr Van Heerden sets the highest bar for laser vision correction surgery in Australia. While his skills and experience are second to none, it is his fun, caring and down to earth nature that truly set’s him apart from the rest. You can sit back and enjoy the journey knowing every detail has been carefully considered.