UV-Adjusted IOL Delivers Youthful Vision

Novel replacement lens can be fine-tuned after implantation during cataract surgery.

Christopher Savage has worked full time as a business broker since the late 1980s. The job involves assisting people in buying and selling businesses. The Cleveland native got started on his career path while living in Chicago for 15 years.

Christopher Savage

“I used to start businesses and then sell them, and I realized I was good at it,” shares Christopher, 60. “When I moved to Florida in 1998, I hooked up with Florida Business Exchange and started just selling businesses instead of starting them and then selling them. This way, somebody else does the work of starting the business. I get to come in later and help them sell it.

“Here in Florida, I work mostly with service businesses. But I’ve sold just about any type of business you can think of, from a manufacturing plant to an ice cream shop, from a doughnut shop to a machine shop. All kinds of businesses. I’m a broker for Florida Business Exchange, but I work for myself. My business is called Christopher E. Savage, PA.”

When he’s not working, Christopher enjoys playing dominoes with friends, riding his bike and walking his dogs. He’s also a certified diver.

“Before COVID-19, I used to travel quite a bit and did a lot of diving,” he elaborates.

“I dove all over the Caribbean. But COVID has made it difficult to travel anywhere to dive, so I haven’t done it in a while.”

About a year ago, Christopher began to encounter difficulties with other activities, including working and driving. COVID wasn’t the culprit. It was his vision.

“The vision in my right eye became very blurry, which made it very difficult to read,” he expounds. “Any document that I needed to read, I had to scan into my computer, put it on the screen and blow it up in size, and even then it was still hard to read. Driving at night was affected as well. Oncoming headlights looked like circles, which definitely posed a danger.”

Christopher has a regular eye doctor, but he was so concerned with the issue with his right eye that he chose to see a specialist for this matter. After doing some research, the specialist he chose to see was Craig E. Berger, MD, of Bay Area Eye Institute in Tampa.

Dr. Berger is a board-certified, fellowship-trained ophthalmic surgeon who also spent 15 years as an adjunct assistant professor of ophthalmology at the University of South Florida Eye Institute.

During his initial visit with Dr. Berger, Christopher learned that the cause of his vision issue was cataracts, a clouding of the eye’s lens that develops through a buildup of proteins.

This accumulation prevents light from passing through the lens, which obscures eyesight and can cause an array of symptoms, including blurriness, a sensitivity to light, a reduction in the vibrancy of colors and double vision.

Fine-Tuned Vision

Christopher chose to stay with Dr. Berger because the doctor has extensive skill and experience in performing cataract surgery, which is the only treatment for cataracts, a condition that develops as part of the natural aging process.

“Generally, cataracts become a problem later in life, but they actually start forming around age 40 and progress at different rates in different people,” Dr. Berger enlightens.

Studies show that more than half of all Americans will develop a cataract by age 80. Other factors such as diabetes, sun exposure, smoking and family history can cause the condition to develop at a younger age.

Treatment involves the surgical removal of the natural clouded lens, which is replaced with a synthetic intraocular lens, or IOL. Cataract surgery is generally performed on an outpatient basis on one eye at a time, with a break of a week or two between procedures.

“Today, my vision is 20/15. It’s like the vision of a 12-year-old.” – Christopher

Like contact lenses, IOLs are available in various focusing powers. Standard IOLs correct vision primarily for distance, but patients can have one eye corrected for distance and the other for reading, an option called monovision.

Another option, multifocal IOLs, typically call for the patient to be fit with bifocal lenses that correct distance and either reading or intermediate vision, but there are some advanced trifocal versions that correct distance, reading and intermediate vision.

Before recommending a replacement IOL for Christopher, Dr. Berger described for him all the advantages and disadvantages of the options. The doctor also reviewed Christopher’s lifestyle to find the best match.

“I always consider the patients’ activities, hobbies, the type of work they do and their visual requirements,” Dr. Berger maintains. “Then I perform a complete eye exam looking at the patient’s tear film, retina and optic nerve. I also look for astigmatism, an imperfection in the cornea that leads to blurry vision.

“I recommend IOLs based on all of that information, and I encourage patients to take time to gain a clear understanding of the benefits of each of the intraocular lenses before making a choice. No one lens is ideal for everyone. Lenses come in many sizes, with a variety of features and benefits.”

For Christopher, Dr. Berger recommended the RxSight® Light Adjustable Lens.

“The unique feature of the RxSight lens is that its shape and focusing characteristics can be adjusted after implantation using an office-based ultraviolet light source,” Dr. Berger explains. “The resulting changes create a highly predictable alteration in the curvature of the lens. The new shape matches the patient’s vision prescription determined before surgery.

“The RxSight lens can be adjusted up to three times to fine-tune the patient’s distance, intermediate and reading vision. In most cases, patients who receive the RxSight lens become glasses-free after cataract surgery and the adjustments that follow.”

Because the lens can be affected by the sun’s UV rays, patients selecting the RxSight are typically asked to wear sunglasses outside during the day for a few weeks after surgery.

“I’m Extremely Happy”

The RxSight lens has given Christopher “exceptional” vision.

Dr. Berger performed Christopher’s cataract surgery this past summer. The ophthalmic surgeon operated on the business broker’s right eye first because it was the more severely affected. Christopher noticed an improvement in his vision right away.

“The vision out of my right eye was clear immediately,” he enthuses. “I could read small print, which I couldn’t do before. As for the UV light treatments, the vision in my right eye was locked in after the second treatment, and the vision in my left eye was locked in after the third treatment. Today, my vision is 20/15. It’s like the vision of a 12-year-old. It’s exceptional. It’s unbelievable. I’m extremely happy.”

Christopher isn’t just thrilled with the results of his treatment, he’s also impressed by the work of the ophthalmic surgeon who helped him achieve those results.

“Dr. Berger changed my life,” Christopher raves. “He’s extremely knowledgeable. He’s also very friendly and caring. And his staff is awesome. I recommend Dr. Berger and Bay Area Eye Institute 100 percent.”

© FHCN article by Patti DiPanfilo. Photo by Jordan Pysz. mkb
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    • Bay Area Eye Institute

      Bay Area Eye Institute understands that there are many ophthalmologists and optometrists in the Tampa bay area to choose from. Dr. Berger’s practice focuses on patient satisfaction. His philosophy is to put the patient first, provide phys... Read More

    • Craig E. Berger, MD

      Craig E. Berger, MD, is a board-certified, fellowship-trained ophthalmic surgeon. He earned his undergraduate degree in chemistry from the University of Florida and his Doctor of Medicine degree from the University of South Florida College of M... Read More