Oculase Articles

How long do implantable contact lenses last?

Mr Tariq Ayoub - 21 Feb 2022

Do you need implantable contact lenses? You might wonder: how long do implantable contact lenses last, does the surgery hurt, and how successful is it. 

We answer all these questions and more in our blog. 


What are surgically implanted contact lenses?

An implantable contact lens is a synthetic lens designed to stay in the eye, on top of your natural lens. Though, unlike a standard contact lens, you don’t need to remove or replace it each day. You may also know this as an artificial intraocular lens. 

We use implantable contact lens (ICL) surgery for people who cannot have laser eye surgery. 

This includes people who have:

  • Very thin corneas
  • Corneal transplants
  • Very high prescriptions
  • Dry eyes

We can use ICL surgery to treat myopia (short-sightedness), hyperopia (near-sightedness), and astigmatism. These are all examples of refractive errors. Read our blog to learn more: What can ICL eye surgery be used to treat? 


How long do implantable contact lenses last?

Implantable contact lenses are designed to be permanent, which means they could last for the rest of your life. Unlike a standard contact lens, you do not have to remove them every day. 

If you experience further eye problems later in life, such as developing astigmatism, we can correct this with laser eye surgery 

The implantable contact lens procedure is also reversible if you decide later down the road that you no longer want them. 


The ICL procedure

First, we need to assess your suitability for implantable contact lenses. Once we are happy that you are suitable for this procedure, we will explain the benefits and potential risks in detail. 

We will need to measure your eye, so the implants can be custom-made to fit over your natural lenses comfortably and securely. When we implant the lens, we will place it between your natural crystalline lens and your iris (the coloured part of your eye). 

Our ICL Surgery playlist includes a helpful animation that provides a better understanding of how we perform implantable contact lens surgery. 


How long does it take to recover from ICL surgery?

ICL eye surgery has a short recovery time of a few days. During which your eyes may be a little blurry. Watch our video to learn more about the risks of implantable contact lens surgery.


We can arrange a follow-up appointment to check how everything is going a few weeks after the procedure. We discuss what to expect after ICL surgery further in our blog. Read it now to discover its benefits and what your recovery may look like.


Frequently asked questions:

What is the success rate?

ICL surgery has a high success rate of 98%. Patient satisfaction rates are even higher at 99.9%. It is one of the most successful eye procedures. 

Is it safe?

Research shows that implantable contact lens surgery is a safe, stable, and effective procedure. 

Do implantable contact lenses hurt?

Before we begin the procedure, we will administer eye drops to anaesthetise (numb) your eye, meaning the procedure is painless. 

How long does the procedure take?

It is a short procedure that usually takes from 15 to 30 minutes. This will differ depending on whether you have the procedure in one eye or two. 

Can I have implantable contact lenses in both eyes at the same time?

Yes, we can do both eyes at the same time or separately, as you prefer. 

Is there an age limit?

We would usually surgically implant contact lenses in people under the age of 60, as it is not a recommended surgery for people older than this. 


Why choose Oculase?

At Oculase, our patients are our priority. Our expert ophthalmologists (eye surgeons) offer world-class care from years of dedicated experience. 

We deliver thorough consultations and testing to evaluate your eye health and recommend the best treatment plan for you. Book an appointment with one of our specialists today to discuss whether ICL surgery is right for you. 

Read our patient testimonials to get a better idea of the high-quality treatment we offer our patients.


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About the author

Mr Tariq Ayoub
Mr Tariq Ayoub, Consultant Ophthalmologist

Mr Ayoub has been rated as one of the top eye surgeons in the UK. He is a Consultant Ophthalmic Surgeon in London, based at Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust, where he is also the Lead for the Emergency Department at Western Eye Hospital.

0330 128 1616

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