Of the new technologies presented at the joint meeting of the American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery (ASCRS) / University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) Jules Stein Institute in Century City, the Tetraflex® was probably the least likely to be remembered.

Lenstec Tetraflex® IOL

This IOL platform, presented by Paul Dougherty, M.D., seemed to have only one benefit over multifocal IOLs: minimal post-operative glare. However, that benefit already exists with the Crystalens® IOL.

This talk actually began with a discussion of the near acuity patients really need to read magazines, newspapers, etc. After a not very convincing explanation about why we really don’t need to see the equivalent of 20/20 up close, Dr. Dougherty presented results that were objectively worse than what any of the presently available IOLs were capable of delivering.

One caveat: the patients in his study preferred the Tetraflex® over the Crystalens® even though the vision from the Crystalens® eye could see smaller letters on the near eye chart. Now, I’ll be the first to admit that our visual requirements in the real world do not directly correlate with what we can see on an eye chart. So, it is possible that the vision patients experience with the Tetraflex is somehow superior to what is measured with the eye chart.

It will be awhile before this IOL is approved for use in the US. Unless studies are able to show a clear benefit of this IOL over the currently available Crystalens®, however, I seriously doubt this lens will become a major player in the IOLs offered by most surgeons.

© 2009 David Richardson, MD

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