RLE / CLE Treatment Process

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The Refractive Lens Exchange RLE / Clear Lens Exchange CLE treatment process will take 20 minutes per eye and each eye is treated individually, one day after the other. The process is as follows:

cle treatment process

  • When arriving at the clinic on the day of surgery our friendly and experienced clinical team will guide you through every step of the way.
  • Anaesthetic drops are used to numb the eye. We don’t use needles.
  • Pupils are dilated using drops.
  • An eyelid guard is used to prevent blinking.
  • A micro incision is made at the edge of the cornea.
  • The phacoemulsification probe is used to break up and remove the natural lens.
  • The tailor-made intraocular lens is placed in the capsule where the lens used to be.
  • There is no need for stitches due to the micro incision being self-sealing.
  • Our specialist nurse will go through the precautions and medications that are needed to aid recovery.
  • The aftercare will begin the next day with a check-up for the treated eye.

On the day of the procedure you are provided with an eye cover or goggles, anti-inflammatory, antibiotic and hydrating drops. You will be advised when to take the drops.

Most patients will experience dryness for a short while after treatment. This can last up to a month and is completely normal as the dryness experienced is part of the healing process of the eye.

RLE / CLE Treatment Process: Recovery

It normally takes 24 to 48 hours for distance vision to settle (some people take longer – this is nothing to be concerned about), and reading vision can take a little longer as it takes some time for the brain to adjust. Once you have undertaken treatment we will need to see you at regular intervals throughout the year to keep track of your visual improvement. These check-ups can be conducted at our AVC clinic or at one of our optometrist network partners from 3 months onwards.

You can usually start driving 3 to 4 days after treatment. However, this will be confirmed at your first post-operative check when your eye is examined and the rate of healing is determined. After treatment, you can return to normal life; however there are restrictions on certain activities. The more physically exertive the activity or if it is high risk, the longer you will have to wait (the longest amount of waiting time is six weeks after treatment).

A full list of any restrictions that may apply will be discussed at your consultation.