Toric lens implantation carries risks such as loss of vision; development of debilitating visual symptoms; the need for additional corrective procedures to reposition, replace or remove the implant; and an increase in intraocular pressure. Additional risks include clouding of the cornea, development of a cataract, retinal detachment, and rare complications such as infection, bleeding and severe inflammation that can lead to loss of vision or the eye.
The eye's cornea and natural lens normally focus light on the retina to create an image that is read by the brain. Defects in the ability of the eye to focus this image on the retina are called refractive errors and results in blurry vision. Phakic intraocular lenses are plastic or silicone lenses that an eye surgeon implants into the eye just in front of or just behind the iris to correct refractive errors without removing the patient's original clear crystalline lens. One type, the toric IOL, corrects astigmatism. When successful, IOL implants free the patient from having to wear glasses or contact lenses.
Like any surgical procedure, implanting a phakic lens carries risks and limitations that a patient needs to understand before deciding to undergo the procedure. Alternatives to IOL implants include wearing glasses or contact lenses and other types of refractive surgery such as photorefractive keratectomy and LASIK.