There is quite a bit of buzz surrounding the recent FDA approval of the AMO Tecnis Symfony intraocular lens implant for cataract surgery patients. The Tecnis Symfony lens implant which was FDA approved on July 15, 2016, is a completely new category of implant that gives an "Extended Depth of Focus" to patients desiring independence from glasses after cataract surgery.
"The striking advantage of this new lens implant in my opinion is giving a new surgical option to patients who desire spectacle independence but have significant astigmatism, macular disease, or other factors which traditionally have made them poor candidates in the past for a multifocal lens," Dr. Tan says. "Those patients who did not want to risk having glare and haloes who want reasonable close up vision after surgery now also have an excellent choice."
There are currently generally three categories of intraocular lens implants available to cataract surgeons: Monofocal implants, Toric astigmatic implants (for astigmatism), and Multifocal lens implants. The addition of the Tecnis Symfony line allows for an increased depth of focus so that distance, intermediate, and some near vision can be obtained without sacrificing loss of contrast sensitivity and adding glare/haloes to vision, which are often encountered by patients who elect to have a Multifocal lens implanted. The way this works is by both treating chromatic aberration (by focusing all the color components in light and their variable refractive properties) and through the use of diffractive optics.
The results of the FDA trial showed that the Tecnis Symfony performed much better for intermediate and near vision. 77 percent had good intermediate distance vision of 20/25 with the Tecnis Symfony lens, compared with 34 percent of those with a monofocal lens. For reading, the Tecnis Symfony patients could read two additionally smaller lines than those with a monofocal lens. Both monofocal and Tecnis Symfony lenses had similarly good distance vision. The results and press release from the FDA are available below: