Clear Lens Exchange: An Under the Radar Vision Correction Option  

Updated on September 29, 2023

The first thing to come to patients’ minds when they think of a procedure that will help them with their eyesight is typically LASIK, a commonly used laser vision correction (LVC) technique. However, for some patients LASIK is not the answer for a variety of reasons, including age, early cataract development, dry eyes, thin corneas, or other health concerns. 

What is Clear Lens Exchange surgery?

The Clear Lens Exchange procedure, also known as refractive lens exchange, is a lens-based surgical procedure that can correct refractive errors like nearsightedness, farsightedness, and presbyopia (age-related farsightedness that leads to reading glasses) and eliminates the need for cataract surgery later in life.

The Clear Lens Exchange procedure follows the same process as cataract surgery – where the natural lens of the eye is removed and replaced with an advanced intraocular lens (IOL) – but with Clear Lens Exchange the lens is replaced before natural aging has the chance to make that natural lens cloudy, aka developing a cataract. While Clear Lens Exchange could be considered a preemptive cataract procedure, the vision correction results are much more immediate. 

CLE is performed on an outpatient basis and takes approximately 30 minutes. Most people experience immediate improvement in vision following the procedure. Patients can resume using their electronic devices almost immediately. It takes about a week to recover and resume normal activities, and a few weeks for full recovery. 

What are the benefits of Clear Lens Exchange?

CLE corrects refractive errors such as nearsightedness or farsightedness and age-related farsightedness. It also corrects astigmatism. Here are some of the benefits of CLE:

  • Increased ability to read books and computer text without needing glasses.
  • Increased independence from corrective eyewear.
  • Eliminates the need for cataract surgery in the future.
  • Short recovery time.

CLE is a great option for patients with high refractive errors and those who cannot wear contact lenses or do not qualify for LASIK.

Am I a good candidate for Clear Lens Exchange?

CLE is a good option for all types of refractive error or patients who do not qualify for other laser vision correction procedures. CLE is a particularly good option for people who have early stages of cataract development or are experiencing presbyopia and want to reduce their dependence on reading glasses. Good candidates for CLE include: 

  • People who can’t have laser vision correction.
  • Candidates experiencing early cataracts.
  • People over the age of 40 who use reading glasses.
  • Patients over the age of 40 with extreme prescriptions or abnormal corneas.

If you or someone you know is interested in CLE, book an appointment with your eye doctor to see if you qualify as a candidate. Your doctor can walk you through different lens options to find the best one to fit your health and wellness goals. Take the next step to correcting your eye vision. 

Kelly Frasier, M.D.

Kelly J. Frasier, MD, joined the surgical team at Kleiman Evangelista Eye Centers in October 2014. He shares Kleiman Evangelista Eye Centers’ passion for enhancing patients’ vision and providing exceptional care by staying on top of the latest technological advances in ophthalmology.

A native of Odessa, Texas, Dr. Frasier graduated from West Texas A&M University and went on to earn his Medical Degree from the UT School of Medicine at San Antonio. He completed his internship at Texas Tech, where he was a member of the AOA Honor Society. Board Certified by the American Board of Ophthalmology, Dr. Frasier is a member of the American Academy of Ophthalmology, Texas Medical Association, and the Tarrant County Medical Association.

Dr. Frasier came to Kleiman Evangelista Eye Centers after eight years of operating his own practice, Frasier Eye Care, in Lubbock, Texas.