Monovision Intraocular Lens Implant (IOL) Correction After Cataract Surgery

Reviewed by:

Paul Koch, MD

Monovision Intraocular Lens Implant (IOL) Correction after Cataract Surgery is one possible alternative that some Cataract patients may wish to explore for correcting a fuller range of distance, close and arm’s length vision. Depending on your lifestyle and the types of daily tasks in your everyday routine activities, having the option of being less dependent or even independent of eyeglasses, reading glasses or bifocals after Cataract Surgery for these activities can be very convenient. Certainly for many patients the implantation of near vision presbyopia correcting lens implants (IOL), such as the AcrySof®ReSTOR® Lens Implant, the Crystalens® Lens Implant or the Tecnis® Multifocal Lens Implant, can be an excellent choice. However, for some patients who may not be medically suitable, optically suitable or who have particular vision correction needs not corrected by these lens implants, another Cataract Surgery vision correction option called Monovision Lens Implants may be the best choice.

About Monovision Intraocular Lens Implants (IOL)

Monovision correction is a technique of vision correction that has been used for many years to correct distance, near and intermediate vision with contact lenses and Laser Vision Correction such as LASIK. It has also been used by Cataract Surgeons to help patients achieve simultaneous correction of distance, intermediate and close vision in selected situations.

Typically in Monovision correction, your dominant eye is corrected for clear distance vision and your non-dominant eye is corrected is corrected for intermediate and/or close vision.


For Cataract Surgery Monovision correction, your Cataract Surgeon will implant either Monofocal Lens Implants (IOL) or Aspheric Lens Implants (IOL) that are carefully calculated based on a series of lifestyle questions and specialized measurements and trials performed in addition to the routine Cataract and Lens Implant measurements taken at your pre-operative measurement visit. These tests are necessary to help the Cataract Surgeon determine your ocular dominance, your sighting preferences, the aberrations in your eyes and your tolerance to blur or “defocus”. By using these measurements it is then possible to determine whether you might be a Monovision correction candidate. It may also be necessary for your Cataract Surgeon to arrange for an optical “trial” of the Monovision correction using a trial frame or even contact lenses right in the office. From this, your Cataract Surgeon will have measurements and a sense from your feedback as to whether this might be a good option for you. When it can be demonstrated that Monovision is well tolerated by patients in the office trial the success rate is in the 80% range as reported in Cataract & Refractive Surgery: Progress III by Kohnen and Koch in 2008. In an older survey of the published literature without any standardized testing or screening the composite success rate of all publications was 73% as reported by Jain, Arora and Azar in  the May 1996 Survey of Ophthalmology. Please note that as with any type of near vision presbyopia correcting lens implants, the extensive additional testing for Monovision Cataract Surgery may involve some fees that may not be covered by typical insurances or even Medicare.

The information that has been provided here is intended to give patients an overview of Cataract Surgery and Monovision Correction. It is possible that your individual experience might be different. None of the information provided here is meant to be a substitute or replace your physician’s consultation nor does it replace the need for you to consult with your surgeon about specific details of Cataract Surgery and Monovision Lens Implants (IOL).

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cataracts, cataract, cataract surgery, cataract patients

AcrySof®ReSTOR® is a registered trademark of Alcon, Inc., ReZoom™ and Technis® are registered trademarks of
Abbott Medical Optics and Crystalens® is a registered trademark of Bausch & Lomb.