Artificial Lens Surgery
Refractive lens exchange in essence is a cataract surgery performed on the crystalline lens prior to the onset of bothersome cataract-type symptoms. The crystalline lens is replaced with an artificial lens that is custom fit to the eye to eliminate refractive error and reduce dependence on glasses. This procedure is more involved and slightly less precise than a traditional LASIK or PRK surgery, but it is able to correct far higher degrees of near or far-sightedness, as well as treat presbyopia (need for reading glasses), which LASIK cannot do.
Typically for a clear lens exchange, patients will select a multifocal intraocular lens to be placed so that minimal glasses are required for both distance and reading. Like cataract surgery, the vision is expected to remain stable throughout life.
In short, refractive lens exchange is a good procedure for patients who have moderate-to-severe refractive errors and experienced the onset of presbyopia. Similar to LASIK, the procedure is not covered by insurance.